Ed Bott says that display ads may be rendered useless thanks to Microsoft:

The more closely I look at the new Tracking Protection feature in Internet Explorer 9, the more astonished I am that it came from one of the world’s largest corporations.

If Internet Explorer 9 becomes widely adopted and if Tracking Protection is widely usedand those are two tricky assumptionsit has the potential to seriously disrupt the online advertising business. Microsoft made this feature widely available last week in the Release Candidate build of IE9 (if you missed it, here’s my review of the IE9 RC). Using the RC, it takes exactly two clicks to download a Tracking Protection List (TPL) and begin blocking third-party cookies, tracking pixels, web beacons, hit counters, analytics scripts, and other tools of the modern web designed to assemble a profile of your movements and activities on the web.

Oh, and it blocks ads, too.

James Joyner reacts:

Right now, some power users already block various ads and scripts to speed up their downloads and avoid the clutter of advertising. Additionally, some companies do the same thing, mostly as a security measure. If blocking of ads and tracking becomes the default mode of surfing the Web, though, the entire business model on which it’s currently built will collapse.

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