October 18, 2021

Use HoloLens as Adblocker Is a Terrible Idea




Report came from Wired News that a group of students from PennApps hackathon are toying the idea to use head mounted devices as a adblocker, called “Brand Killer”. I am not impressed. Indeed, I think it is a bad and potentially dangerous idea. It is excusable because they are students. What bothers me is the Wired article uses an encouraging tune. It makes you feel it is some achievements or some good idea we should embrace even support. I beg to differ.

I know there is such thing called adblocker, which when installed into a web browser would block ads from websites. This is a equally bad idea. Allow me to explain.

Advertising started as long as the inception of the public media, even before that. Since the start of the television, advertising has been part of modern life. The flourish of the Interest comes with the same level of growth in Internet advertising. Some ads are fine, some are even interesting, a few are even memorable, however, most of them are annoying. Overall ads have been negative in most of our minds. But it doesn’t matter, ads has long became part of the modern culture. Nobody likes ads, even though it can be good some times, just like we don’t like politicians in general, even though there are good politicians whom we don’t hate.

Just like many other things in the world, ads exist for a reason, a good reason indeed. The entire TV industry is financed by ads.

Without ads, you would have to pay a big chunk of your salary to have 300 channels on your TV, or just watch PBS all day every day.

Without ads, the New York Times, WSJ would cost you 3 times more than you pay now. Okey, you don’t read them.

But without ads, the Internet would be left with only the government websites, which are paid by tax payers, the corporate websites, which you don’t bother to visit unless you want to do business with them.

Without ads, you have to go to your rich neighbor’s house to watch the Super Bowl, like the old days.

Without ads, the Oscar would be hosted by Mr. Rogers from Mr. Rogers Neighborhood, instead of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

Without ads, the Olympic games would be gone forever. They are already in trouble finding a host city, if you want to kill it, the adblocker can certainly help.

People don’t realize when you watch TV for any one second, someone paid for you. It’s either you pay or they pay, nothing is really free.

The app is called “Brand Killer”, quite a name. I believe it will do what they want. It is OK to kill the brands, and they probably will make a lot of money killing the brands, but are we OK that the Internet go back 20 years, many of favorite websites get killed forever?

I think for the good people who loves the Internet, and television, and any media that we enjoy, adblockers should die, so should the idea of “Brand Killer”. If they have to, please don’t use it with HoloLens, please.


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  • Rusher93

    AH but there Lays the Issue I dont mind Ads either but they are Everywhere like u said . Intrusive. some even adult nature and Pop ups Omg the pop ups ads are one thing but the Pop ups… I would allow ads all day But They are over kill. My crappy computer I looked it up it was eating up all my CPU… all of it.. It lagged b4 i blocked.. My computer is usable now seeing how the ads dont eat up CPU power.. Test it for your sellf.. You will notice a decent drop.. It eats up Power, even Makes Flash Crash more often.. Since i block now My flash rarely crashes now . WHen they learn moderation and not eat up all my CPU and data.. Ill use ads all day long

    • Sean Leith

      Points taken. If it won’t change the industry in a big way, it’s totally valid, but I am just not so sure.