Ad Block Scores Victory Over German Publishers In Court

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A court in Germany has ruled that users have the right to use the ad block plugin which blocks advertisements on a user’s browser. German newspapers had taken AdBlock Plus to court claiming that the browser plugin was an anti-competitive product that threatened their businesses. However, ruled in favor of the company, saying that software that saves you from watching annoying ads like the Airtel Unliminet ad.

Ad Plus argued that its role is defending an obvious consumer right: giving people the ability to control their own screens by letting them block annoying ads and protect their privacy. An argument the court upheld in its ruling.  The Newspaper publishers also raised questions with regards to AdBlock Plus’ whitelisting service where  Adblock Plus allows some of the advertising not considered annoying to be viewed. The service has been called a racket with one website having been asked to pay 30% of the extra revenues it would have made by having ads on its platform unblocked.

In a rejoinder, Ad Block plus highlights that its service has proved popular with many users, with AdBlock Plus having been downloaded nearly 400 million times. It also notes that it does not charge fees to smaller businesses and blogs, and allows users to block its white-listed ads if desired. The German newspapers are already gearing up for an appeal.