Highlight Ads on Google and Reddit by fading them in Chrome

NoDisguisedAdsAnymore is a new extension for the Google Chrome web browser that changes the design of ads on Google and Reddit to make it easier to distinguish content from advertisement.

Google has a set of rules for websites and webmasters that use the company’s Adsense program; one of the rules forbids that content is formatted to mimic ads.

Publishers may not implement Google ads in a manner that disguises the ads in any way. This includes formatting neighboring content to look similar to the ads.

Google on the other hand changed the display of advertisement on the company’s search engine significantly in the past decade. Advertisement on Google search and organic results look very similar in 2019. The only distinguishing factor is a small “ad” reference placed on the second row of ads in the results.

The lack of differences between ads and organic results increases clicks on ads certainly and the only question is by how much.

The Chrome extension NoDisguisedAdsAnymore changes the formatting of ads on Google search results pages and on Reddit to help users avoid these adverts.

The following screenshot shows a result on Google after installation of the extension.

google hide ads

The ads are still there but they are faded out on the results page. Some Google users may be surprised by the sheer number of ads on Google search results page.

The extension works on Reddit as well and will do the same to fade out ads on the site that look just like regular posts.

The extension offers no use for Chrome users who use content blockers as advertisements are not shown in Chrome if a content blocker like uBlock Origin is used.

Users who don’t mind ads but want a clearer distinction between advertisement and content may like the Chrome extension on the other hand. It may also be useful for educational purposes to highlight the ever increasing use of ads on Google properties.

Closing Words

NoDisguisedAdsAnymore is a specialized extension for Google Chrome that fades ads on Google and Reddit. The extension should work in other Chromium-based browsers as well but I did not test that.

Experienced Internet users may not need the extension to distinguish content from ads. Users who just use the Internet on the other hand may find this beneficial.

Now You: What is your take on the extension? Good idea or superfluous?

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