Former Google senior manager gets $10m funding to tackle ad blockers

A former Google general manager has launched new software for publishers which is designed to circumvent ad blockers by offering readers a number of subscription options that will give them access to content with advertising.

Ad blockers are increasingly becoming a source of contention for publishers who are losing significant amounts of revenue as a result of web browser extensions. Google lost a reported $6.6 billion in revenue to ad blockers last year alone. Their prominence looks set to increase with Apple now allowing ad blocking on iPhones and mobile phone service carrier plans to implement it across entire networks.

The former general manager of marketplace development at Google, Ben Barokas, created Sourcepoint with the backing of $10m (£6.3m) in series A investment funding. Barokas aims to help eliminate the threat of ad blockers for publishing community but not in the conventional way of blocking the ad blockers or having companies pay to be put on whitelists.

The Sourcepoint co-founder and CEO, Barokas, told Business Insider that the model employs a unique approach to the problem by opening up a “transparent transaction” between content creators and content consumers.

The software will allow publishers to present a message to a web visitor that has an ad blocker installed. One option includes informing the user that the ads help to pay for the content which they are consuming and asking if they would in return for the consumption, allow the ad. The other model which Sourcepoint will provide publishers is being able to allow users to choose their advertising experience, perhaps in the form of three ads for three stories.

The subscription options have been designed to take away the abrasive interaction of subscribing to a websites paywall. The software may also help publishers avoid the pressure of feeling that they have to pay significant sums of money to subscribe to whitelists which Barokas describes as “blackmail”.

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