Internet is a great place for businesses and for marketing. We all know it. But why? Basically, because the internet makes it a lot easier to find the right audience for any product. Also, everybody is consuming a lot of content, which means that our behaviour makes it even easier for companies to reach us. So, advertisers will look for and find you on the internet. But, can you avoid them? And if so, how?
Yes, you can. That’s the short answer. But you’ll have to take action. And they’ll try to put you back on the ads consuming wagon at every turn.
You should be conscious that most services track you so they can get the right ad in front of you. Every time you accept the cookies of a new site, you should take a good look at which cookies are those. The most basic ones and the reason why most websites need to warn you is because of the social media cookies. That website that you are visiting may not be tracking you but as they use social media widgets and other third parties (and those do track all your activity) they must warn you. But I’ve found that many sites will even specify which services and companies work with them, which might actually be many more than we are used to and will share your data for a wider range of purposes and to far many companies. Unfortunately, there are some of these cases when it is actually not possible to deny accepting those cookies and to navigate the site.
How to remove ads (some at least)?
First of all, start by getting some tools. Aka:
- Adblock (for your favourite browser)
- Use a browser that doesn’t track you and blocks most ads
Then, accept that you’ll have to say no. Every time you say you consent to have ads better suited to your interests, you are accepting ads and trackers.
a gratuitous picture of my cat, depicting privacy 😆
How to get more privacy using google
First, check this(!) It freaks me out to see it. They just have too much information. Imagine you could access that info about any person. Or every person. You could know much more than where they work and live (which is not little).
- Go to https://myaccount.google.com and review every section.
- Go to https://myaccount.google.com/data-and-personalization and pause all the services you don’t really need. I only keep the Youtube history to keep a record of which videos I saw, in case I want to rewatch any of them. Turn off ad personalisation (anyway, it is more fun to see new unrelated ads, and you won’t be seeing many either).
And now for the action that changes it all: go to these sites and turn off all the companies:
Last but not least, stay informed and keep trying to push off the ads. You may even find that you are not seeing ads on Youtube! I rarely see any and I can enjoy Youtube music for free without interruptions (most of the time).
And rest assured, the day you are actually on the internet looking for a product you want or need, you’ll be able to find it without the help of constant ads floating all over the sites.
Now, go surf the amazing web.