Art instead of Ads

Reading the news online can be very annoying. There are so many ads, pop-up windows and banners on the screen that you can hardly focus on the copy. So why not banish the ads and replace them with something more enjoyable? Last week Katie told us about a customizable open source add-on by Firefox: Add-Art replaces advertising with art images. The art is updated every two weeks and features contemporary artists and curators.

Among the more than 100 add-ons available for Firefox, “adblockers” are the most popular. While other versions just block the ads and replace them with blank space, Add-Art aims to present the work of young contemporary artists in place of advertisements.

Here’s the Daily News website before installing Add-Art:

And after installing Add-Art:

I love the idea of substituting annoying or boring ads by contemporary art. However, as you can see, this add-on still needs some polish. Most of us in the studio are having problems installing it. Those who could install it noticed that it doesn’t seem to work on all websites. Sometimes it just blocks the ads and sometimes the ads aren’t blocked at all (notice above). The developers are aware of this problem, and they state on their website: some “ads are not simply images but generated with scripts built into the page. We have some code that replaces many of these script-based ads with art, but not all of them. We’re working on getting the rest.”

Also, I wish that clicking on the art would take you to the artist’s website… or that the art was updated more often than every two weeks… or that you would see more than one image of the currently featured artist on the webpage…

Anyway, I look forward to seeing more art instead of ads!