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Pop-ups of the street

§ New media industry

It’s been noted for some time that the days of the pop-up ad are numbered. Big publishers such as AOL are no longer showing pop-ups (although AOL still runs pop-ups on other people’s sites) and Google, the biggest publisher of all, has never run pop-ups (why would they with the apparent success of AdSense?). Backing this up is an abundance of pop-up blocking software including all modern browsers, AOL’s recent offering and, recently, Internet Explorer.

Good news to Web site visitors, but pop-ups aren’t going away. They are leaving virtual space and manifesting themselves on our streets in blue and yellow and green bibs. Fours times a day I’m dodging “Have you got a moment for…” on rush hour pavements and station concourses.

“Sorry” followed by a mumbled excuse soon reduced to “No, sorry” [clicking x]. I’m now at a simple “No” [alt-F4] and very soon will be a rude blank [pop-up blocking]. Except it’s not pop-up blocking because they are still there, in the way, annoying the hell out of me. Call me a curmudgeon but as worthy as Cancer Research and the Children’s Society and whoever’s-turn-it-is-today may be, being hassled for my bank details four times a day, every day for a year is too much.