|Irony: Firefox Advertisement in the New York Times (2004)|
Again the idealists fail to understand how websites pay for their monthly server and bandwidth charges. For most "free" sites their revenue is generated through advertisements. Other sites use subscription services and the rest eat the cost. The ones eating the cost have another source of revenue usually not Internet based.
Since day one, I've understood the back end reason for banner ads. They are a necessity of free content. Lets be honest any web savvy user generally ignores all ads that they choose. So pushing features such as Adblock is harmful to the Internet, as we know it.
"Adblock is a content filtering plug-in for the Mozilla and Firebird browsers. It is both more robust and more precise than the built-in image blocker." - The Adblock Project
While Adblock is nothing new in terms of ad blocking software, it is significant in that it's current hype and price (free) is making it widely recommended and used as an extension to the Firefox web browser - this is a dangerous trend.
Adblock effectively robs these free sites of their revenue. If Internet Explorer came with a feature such as Adblock, you would effectively wipe out thousands of websites, maybe more. These are the same free sites users of Adblock frequently visit. The irony is how this is self-defeating.
If features such as Adblock become commonplace you will force an unnecessary outcome - one in which free sites deliver their content in a way that only disabling Adblock will display the content. Web sites that depend on advertising as their primary source of revenue should take notice.