[Noisebridge-discuss] Opting out of Google Advertising

James Sundquist sundquistjames at gmail.com
Fri Mar 1 22:59:11 UTC 2013

Hey Noisebridge.  I recently opted out of Google Advertising and was amazed
by how complex it is.  Here the steps I followed:

Google Privacy links begin here to https://www.google.com/settings/ads/onweb
This is the "Google Ad Preferences Manager" for whatever account you are
currently logged in as.

This will take you to "Ads on the Web"
After you OptOut of this you will not be finished.
Next, select "Ads on Search and Google" or go to
https://www.google.com/settings/u/0/ads/preferences/?hl=en and login

Note you can see Blocked Advertisers, probably none, and must select "Opt
Out" twice.

Now you have finished opting out of receiving ads from Google on this
account, but you'll need to repeat the process for every additional account
you have.  Not to mention, your opt-out expires once you clear your cache.

Once you've opted out via Google, you'll want to install an add-on[3] since
it is impossible to make the opt-out permanent otherwise.  You can opt out
of their partner sites below.

http://www.aboutads.info/choices allows you to opt-out of 117 advertising
companies, including those connected to Microsoft and Google, on the
browser level.
You can see their walkthrough here[1]
Before you do anything you should disable all extensions and close all
tabs/windows, or the the opt-outs will fail.

Scroll to the very bottom of the page and click "Choose all companies".
After opting out, you'll now see a link appear (name varies by browser[2])
for another add-on that you must install on each browser, because once
again there is no way to permanently opt-out after a cache clean.
Once you've installed the "Protect My Privacy" Add-On, don't forget to
re-enable all your other extensions/add-ons for the browser.

You'll have to repeat all the aboudads.info steps with each browser.  These
are a great reason to run privacy add-ons such as Noscript, Ghostery,
Ad-block Plus, Greasemonkey (with the right userscripts).  Please recommend
any I've missed.  Also, this clearly doesn't cover running an unsupported
browser or breaking the add-on from updates or using nightly builds of

[1] http://www.aboutads.info/help#3
[2] Protect My Privacy for Firefox - worked 100%
    Protect My Privacy for Chrome (must also enable it and other extensions
separately for "incognito" mode)
 Protect My Privacy for Internet Explorer (use the "No Add-Ons" shortcut)
and Maxthon
[3] IBA Opt-out (by Google) for Chrome.  See below url in whatever browser
(Firefox, etc).
Some additional info and disclaimers: this is just for Google Privacy, but
obviously it is not exhaustive by any means.  Additional footwork must be
done within your Google applications, browers, extensions/add-ons, etc.
 Also, plenty of advertisers do not abide by the voluntary opt-out program.
 Sandboxing and using VM's can provide additional layers of protection if
you want to take this farther.

Let me know what you think!
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