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Consumers are abandoning content that takes too long to load or is too long, according to a new Adobe Consumer Content Survey.

Expand chart
Reproduced from the 2018 Adobe Consumer Content Survey; Chart: Axios Visuals

Why it matters: Consumption habits are being shaped by web platforms with expert engineering that are designed to maintain consumer attention and eyeballs. Less sophisticated consumer experiences, like slow websites or crappy apps, are being abandoned or intentionally avoided by consumers.

Some of the bigger players in technology are working to weed out some of the bad experiences from the internet to make the overall web experiences better for everyone.

  • Google will roll out its long-awaited ad blocker in its Chrome web browser next week, which will filter out low-quality ads based on third-party standards.
  • Flipboard said earlier this year that it will reward publishers with better experiences by giving them more visibility on its platform.
  • Apple's Safari browser has begun blocking autoplay videos, and it includes a feature that stops ad retargeting based on user web history.
  • The EU passed a sweeping data reform package that will go into effect next year that will make it harder for ad tech companies to collect data to target consumers with intrusive ads.
  • Google and Facebook have also tried to speed up load times of articles with features like Google AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) and Instant Articles.

Some ad tech companies that base their businesses around ad retargeting, as well as other technologies that are sometimes deemed as intrusive, are seeing their businesses take a hit.

  • Criteo, once the holy grail of advertising retargeting, has seen its stock tumble over the past year and said it expects Apple's new Safari ad-blocker to cut its revenue by roughly 22%.

Consumers have long indicated that they are fed up with bad web experiences by installing ad blockers and spending more time with platforms, instead of standalone websites.

  • Americans spend seven times more of their mobile time using apps rather than the web. Google and Facebook own eight of the top 10 most-used mobile apps in the U.S., per comScore.
  • Nearly one third of internet users in the U.S. are expected to use ad blockers this year, according to estimates by eMarketer.

Go deeper

6 hours ago - Health

Fauci: Omicron variant will "inevitably" be found in U.S.

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, cautioned on Sunday that the COVID-19 Omicron variant will "inevitably" be found in the United States.

Driving the news: Fauci, Biden's chief medical adviser, told ABC's George Stephanopoulos on "This Week" that U.S. officials will meet with colleagues from South Africa later on Sunday to try to determine the severity of the cases, as countries scramble to learn more about the variant.

Updated 8 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Dems fear supply-chain blame

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

As supply-chain kinks drive up prices and disrupt holiday shopping, Democrats are scrambling to show action and deflect blame.

Why it matters: With their party controlling both the White House and Capitol, vulnerable Democrats worry supply-chain snafus will hurt them in next year's midterms.

8 hours ago - World

Scoop: Germany urges Congress not to sanction Putin’s pipeline

Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

The German government has urged members of Congress not to sanction the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, arguing that doing so will "weaken" U.S. credibility and "ultimately damage transatlantic unity," according to documents obtained by Axios.

Why it matters: At a time when roughly 100,000 Russian troops are massing at its border, Ukraine views Nord Stream 2 as an existential threat to its security. The pipeline would circumvent Ukrainian transit infrastructure and deliver Russian gas directly to Germany, eliminating one of the last deterrents Ukraine has against an invasion.

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