Recently, after reading about some advertising discussion I decided to allow ads to be served to me at specific sites that I frequent. Because I recognize there is no free lunch.

I originally started blocking because of ads that are "jarring", offensive, clutter the site or hide the content. Flashing ads or animated ads especially get no love from me.

I have left ads on for quite a while on Stack Overflow, but one ad in particular keeps coming up and getting in my way visually. It is for that reason that I have turned Adblock back on. If an ad gets in the way or makes me want to stay away from the site, I would prefer to block rather than leave the community and stop visiting the site.

As a user of Stack Overflow, I want to inform both the Stack Overflow management and community of my actions and ask for advice. This question is not meant as flame bait or as an insult, but hopefully to improve everyone's experience.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to deal with the ad in question other than completely blocking the ads on this site? How do you deal with these ads?

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    – Troggy
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 15:52
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    I am not trying to start a flam war or make anybody mad. I am not even trying to change anything. I am just trying to take part in this community and provide feed back. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 16:01
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    Furthermore, why are you blocking all of the ads on SO instead of the single ad? You pretend to be concerned about it, but you block all their ads?
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 16:01
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    As far as I know, and I have looked, there is no way to allow ads for a site and still disable a specific ad. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 16:03
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    For info, I deleted the old one (28137) - it added nothing that isn't covered here, and the comment war was... unnecessary. To all: please don't start another comment explosion - you are wearing out my [delete] button! Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 16:51
  • @jrob: I'd edit this post a bit to narrow down the details to your specific concerns with the advertisements, why you've re-enabled ad-block, and actually make this into a discussion. We can actually discuss this rather than simply listening to what is coming across as a "rant"...
    – RSolberg
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 17:00
  • @RSolberg Done. Thanks for the advice. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 17:30
  • If you think an ad is VERY bad, why not click on it, but don’t buy anything from them…. Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 21:43

2 Answers 2


Thanks for the feedback.

If there's one ad you don't like, why not just block that particular ad by name? Each ad has a specific filename and URL, as they're just images.

How to block a specific ad image

First, you must have the AdBlock Plus Firefox extension installed.

Right click the offending image and select Adblock Plus: Block image...

Button near the bottom of right-click menu

In the resulting dialog, select the pattern that matches the ad filename. It's the topmost one.

ad block in firefox

Done and done!

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    I wasn't even aware that one could just block single ads. (Of course, I probably know less about this than someone who uses this feature, since I don't use ad-blocking.) But my point is that it may be a simple matter of it either not being available to him, or him simply not knowing about the functionality.
    – beska
    Commented Nov 2, 2009 at 22:32
  • I leave Adblock turned on for all sites by default. You can add an exception for a site that is allowed to show ads. This is what I did for stackoverflow.com. I do not know how to allow most ads on a page, but block a specific ad. I am not even sure Adblock will do that. I belive it is all or none. Commented Nov 3, 2009 at 14:33
  • (See "Use Adblock to allow most ads on a site" at superuser.com/questions/65020/… for some issues with the above.)
    – Arjan
    Commented Nov 4, 2009 at 12:25

From what I recall in the previous, but now deleted thread, it was the Woot advertisements in particular that were causing some pain. If it is the same Woot advertisements that annoy me, then I tend to agree that it is visually getting in the way. I've found a couple of the ads from Woot that I don't particularly care for here.

I'm not sure if my dislike would warrant blocking all advertisements on the site with an adblocker, especially since they are fairly random. Any pain that this causes can be quickly solved with a refresh, I'm not sure it warrants spending too much development time or other time trying to make changes.

However, if folks are actually clicking on these advertisements more than others, then the companies are going to continue down this route as it is working. If folks don't click on them, then they'll continue to make changes...

Advertisement1 http://ads.stackoverflow.com/ads/adResults-stackoverflow.png
Advertisement2 http://ads.stackoverflow.com/ads/stackoverflow-ad1.png

  • I would like to note that those ads don't tell me what "Woot!" is. Commented Nov 3, 2009 at 4:21

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