Awful ads on the front page of

What’s up with these horrible ads? I just now got one in Russian, my IP address is Chicago.

Most of the time they’re right wing clickbait. ‘Should illegal immigrants receive stimulus checks?’ is common.

I’m a charter member, not using any ad blocker.

I went there with my adblocker turned off and I don’t see any ads. However, I use different means to block an ad service called doubleclick, which used to serve up dodgy ads all the time. It’s possible that’s what is being used there. I’m not certain Charter Member means anything outside of the message board. Are ads there usually blocked for you?

Members and Charter Members do not see ads on the message board, but that only applies to the message board. It does not apply to the main page. Everyone sees ads on the main page (unless you have an ad blocker of some sort, obviously).

The folks in charge of the web page don’t hand-pick the ads. They go through an ad broker and that broker determines what you see.

Ads these days are usually targeted. If you are seeing right wing clickbait ads, it’s because the ad broker’s algorithm thinks that you might respond to right wing clickbait ads. Ad brokers usually don’t publish how their algorithm works, but it’s a safe bet that they are using things like your IP address, browser history, search history, and any cookies that might be set on your computer to determine what ads you see.

I usually use the Dope from my phone, which has adblock. I recently tried to access the Dope from my computer, where I don’t use adblock because most sites I go to do not require it. After 30 seconds on the SDMB front page I realized I’d need adblock, so I immediately downloaded it and I’m now good to go.

This is true, but as I’ve said many, many times before - the ad broker yall picked is sketchy AF. There are plenty of better ad brokers out there (cite: every other website I see ads on, where those ads are nowhere near as obnoxious as here). I’m sure a higher quality ad broker pays less per view or click than the sketchy-ass ones we see on the Dope, but maybe more people would use this site without adblocker if your broker wasn’t so scummy.

Just my two cents.

My suspicion is that no one who’s directly involved with the operation of the SD, or the SDMB, at this point (i.e., our moderators), was involved in choosing said ad broker; it was likely chosen by someone at Sun-Times Media. And, FWIW, my experience has been that other local newspaper websites often have similarly scummy ads on their pages.

I’m not involved in the ads here, but I thought we changed ad brokers a while back. I believe the reason for the change was that google was ranking us lower because we were using the scum-of-the-earth type advertisers.

This definitely used to be a valid complaint, but I’m not sure it still is.

You are correct. We moderators have nothing to do with the ads here. We can report problematic ads, but that’s it.