Eating Ads With a Monster: Introducing a Gamified Ad Blocker

Maximilian Altmeyer, Pascal Lessel, Kathrin Dernbecher, Vladislav Hnatovskiy, Marc Schubhan, Antonio Krüger

In: Extended Abstracts of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. ACM International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI-2019) May 4-9 Glasgow United Kingdom ISBN 978-1-4503-5971-9/19/05 ACM New York 2019.


Often, online ads are annoying. Ad blockers are a way to prevent ads from appearing on a web page. As a result, web service providers lose more than 35 billion dollars per year and freely available content on the web is at risk. Taking both interests of web service providers and users into account, we present a gamified ad blocker that allows users to drag a virtual monster over ads to eat them and make them disappear. For each deactivated ad, users receive ad-free time that they can take whenever they want. We report findings from a pre-study, establishing requirements for the implementation of the ad blocker as well as the results of a usability test of our prototype. As a next step, we will release the extension in the Chrome Web Store for upcoming in-the-wild studies.

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Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence