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Google, Microsoft, and Amazon are paying to get around Adblock Plus

Google, Microsoft, and Amazon are paying to get around Adblock Plus

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Some of the web's biggest companies have been paying to get around Adblock Plus, according to a new report from Financial Times. Microsoft's Bing search ads and Taboola's "recommended links" box are among the ads that are currently slipping through Adblock Plus's filter, and FT confirms that it's the intentional result of a paid deal between the makers of Adblock and the owners of the ads. According to FT sources, the companies have paid Eyeo (the maker of Adblock Plus) to be added to an official whitelist, which allows them to bypass the plug-in. Google has a similar deal, as has been previously reported.

Eyeo has discussed the whitelist in the past as part of the company's "acceptable ads" program, which is designed to let less aggressive advertising through the filter and encourage companies to tone down their ads. The program is optional for users, but encouraged. "By doing this you support websites that rely on advertising but choose to do it in a non-intrusive way," the Adblock Plus site reads. But while enlisting as part of the program is free for smaller companies, larger companies have been paying hefty fees to participate and bankrolling much of Adblock Plus's development in the process.

2/2 2:19pm ET: Updated to clarify that the partnerships concern Adblock Plus, not the separate software known as AdBlock.