Google and Facebook dominate the digital advertising industry; the two companies reportedly accounted for 89 percent of all digital ad revenue growth in 2016. And antitrust experts and media industry leaders are concerned about any move — like next year’s ad blocker release first reported by the Wall Street Journal — that would give the tech conglomerates even more market power.
“I don’t love that Google is kind of imposing a solution through Chrome,” said David Chavern, leader of the News Media Alliance, an industry association for print and digital news organizations. “It’s sort of saying ‘Here, publishers, this the deal. Take it or leave it.’”
Google Chrome is already the most-used web browser in the U.S., with a 44.5 percent market share. According to Google, the ad blocker will be turned on by default, screening content and flagging advertisements that don’t conform to standards laid out by the industry trade group Coalition for Better Ads. (Google and Facebook are members of the CBA along with many other media companies and trade associations.)