A Google-powered ad blocker is a very bad idea

Google, according to a Wall Street Journal report, is thinking about including an ad-blocking feature in the next version of its Chrome browser.It may be a handy feature for users. But the closer you look at this news, the worse it gets. Why? Because Google isn’t just any browser maker or app company—it’s among the world’s largest Internet companies. And how does it make the vast majority of its $90 billion in revenue? Advertising.

Why on earth would one of the world’s largest ad companies want to implement an ad-blocking service in its browser? Google’s answer would no doubt be that it wants to get rid of the bad actors within the digital-advertising market, and ensure users have a good experience.

The problem is that Google is hugely conflicted when it comes to fixing this. The browser through which it plans to offer ad blocking has more than 50% of the market, and Google itself owns and operates two of the largest ad networks in the world, DoubleClick and AdSense. Presumably none of those ads would be blocked by this service.

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