Before anything else, let me tell you the number of active users of Adblock Plus browser extension: 13,733,878 Firefox users and 4,112,372 Chrome users use it. Adblock Plus is the #1 browser extension in Mozilla’s AMO, which proves that the annoying ads are a big problem on the internet.
We have also reported about few Chrome extensions inserting ads on web pages without users’ consent. Now, Google Chrome team has allowed extension developers to monetize their extensions and apps distributed through the Chrome Web Store by inserting ads on third-party websites. Chrome team has informed developers regarding this along with certain guidelines:
Ads Monetization for Extensions: We are updating our ad policies to allow extensions to monetize through ads. Please ensure your extensions are in compliance by reviewing our extension ads policy guidelines.
Ads are considered part of your app for purposes of content review and compliance with developer terms. Therefore, we would like to remind you that all of the above content policies apply. Ads which are inconsistent with the app’s content rating are also in violation of our developer terms. Please take care to use advertising which does not violate Chrome Web Store Developer Terms.
- Ads Context and Attribution:
- Ads must be presented in context with your app or clearly state which app they are bundled with. Ads must also be easily removable by either adjusting the settings or uninstalling the app(s) altogether. Ads may not simulate or impersonate system notifications or warnings.
- Ad Walls:
- Forcing the user to click on ads or submit personal information for advertising purposes in order to fully use an app provides a poor user experience and is prohibited.
- Interfering with Third-party Ads and Websites:
- Ads associated with your app may not interfere with any ads on a third-party website or application. You may show ads alongside a third-party website only if all of the following criteria are met:
- This behavior is clearly disclosed to the user.
- There is clear attribution of the ads’ source wherever those ads appear.
- The ads do not interfere with any native ads or functionality of the website.
Developers can already “sell” their apps through the Chrome Web Store, and this new feature will add a new way to monetize their work specially for the free apps and extensions. This move will attract developers to create more useful extensions and apps. Moreover, Google team will review all such extensions before releasing for public use.
Mozilla does not allow add-ons to inject ads and other tracking code on third-party websites, but developers can ask users to donate before installing the add-ons.