In April we wrote about a German court upholding the rights to block ads, now a second German court has come out and ruled the same way. German publishers seem to be up in arms and have promised to appeal these rulings.
Venture Beat wrote:
One month after a German court ruled online ad-blocking technology is perfectly fine, a second legal challenge has now arrived at the exact same conclusion.
Back in April, a court in Hamburg ruled that blocking advertisements was legal following a four-month trial on charges brought against Eyeo — the parent company of popular ad-blocking tool Adblock Plus — by German publishers Zeit Online and Handelsblatt. That case has helped set a legal precedent, it seems, because German broadcasters ProSiebenSat.1 and RTL have now lost a similar court battle against Eyeo, reported the Guardian.
A statement issued by a regional court in Munich said that the Adblock Plus software “was not anti-competitive,” as the media companies had claimed, because users had actively chose to install the software. Moreover, the uptake of the software was not sufficient to prevent publishers from finding ad-viewing users from elsewhere, the court said.
Read the full article on Venture Beat
It is interesting that Venture Beat did a story around the first ruling back in April and discussed whether or not ad blocking software was theft. I read all the comments and was surprised that some did in fact think it was theft. The article talked about how some publications block users who use ad blocking software, kind of a point, counter point type deal. Others have moved to native advertising and that trend has only gotten bigger. Some sites use a pay wall and that may increase to more sites over time.
John Oliver from HBO discussed native advertising last year.