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Currently, if you have ads enabled on any Stack site that offers ads, the topbar ads are loaded in after the site itself is loaded. Instead of reserving sufficient space for that when the site is loaded, everything on the site just moves downwards as the ad loads in.

It would be significantly less obnoxious and significantly more user friendly if you reserved the space for the ad before loading it in, right when the site itself loads, so things like flag or edit buttons or vote buttons don't suddenly jump downwards as the ad loads in.

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    The problem is that the ad doesn't always show, so you can't really reserve that space, unless that is also done conditionally, server-side. You can't always reserve that space, that'd be obnoxious. (Imo, more obnoxious than having an ad load in there a split-second after the layout is loaded). – Cerbrus Jan 17 '17 at 9:09
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    @Cerbrus I'd argue having some white space sometimes is better then a jumping page, and it'd be only for people who have enabled topbar ads in the preferences page and people who don't have the "reduced ads" privilege – Magisch Jan 17 '17 at 9:11
  • @tripleee Mine is a feature request, the other one is a bug report. I'm focusing on why it's a good idea to have this for general usability (for all users I'd argue such a solution is more palatable and less annoyance inducing) while the other one is about the context of flagging spam. – Magisch Jan 17 '17 at 9:17
  • Yes, this is annoying when flagging from Smokey (which is probably why you asked this :P). – Mithical Jan 17 '17 at 9:18
  • It's a bug, and my reasoning is independent of the scope of the example use case which I included for context. – tripleee Jan 17 '17 at 9:19
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I have a couple of concerns regarding this FR:

For users that have ads enabled, the top bar ad isn't always loaded.
This means you can't unconditionally reserve the space for the ad.

Content getting shifted as a result of a image loading can be explained.
Content getting shifted because nothing is loading is harder to explain.

Should this get implemented,

  • The space should only be reserved if an ad is going to be loaded into it.
  • This reservation should probably be done through a (conditionally applied) CSS class, so the space is reserved when the page first renders.
  • Said CSS class should be set server-side, so it doesn't rely on JS loading (Which could still result in a jump).

Basically: +1 for the FR, but only if implemented properly.

| improve this answer | |
  • I'd say getting it implemented improperly (with a static piece of whitespace when no ad is served) would be a lot better than nothing. – tripleee Jan 17 '17 at 10:10
  • The whole point is that content isnt shifted, so there's nothing except extra whitespace on the page when there isn't ad. – Mani Gandham Feb 22 '17 at 1:13

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