Clickbait. You’re probably guilty of falling for it at some point. You’re reading an article online about midterm elections, and as you read the last sentence, a headline at the bottom of the article catches your eye. “They Thought They Were Alone, But The Deputy Didn’t Know A Camera Was Filming.”
What did the deputy do? You click the link.
You’re directed to a page that loads slowly and is completely filled with flashy ads, and a constant requirement to hit a flashy ‘Next’ button for each additional paragraph of the article. If you make it to the end, you’re immediately ambushed by a fresh batch of attention-grabbing content. Before you know it, it’s been 45 minutes.
If you fall into the clickbait rabbit hole, it’s easy to lose hours of focus and productivity.
By definition, clickbait is a pejorative term used for web contact that generates advertising revenue using sensationalist headlines, eye-catching thumbnails, and often exaggerated or inaccurate information to encourage click throughs.
Not only are these ads created to be deliciously enticing, they are often targeted directly at the users themselves, based on cookie tracking and retargeting – making them personalized and even more difficult to ignore.
Tim Wu, author of The Attention Merchants , describes this phenomenon as the casino effect. Wu explains,”It’s this effort of the environment to make you lose control of your sense of time and your attention kind of gets dragged away.” A heavy hidden cost of much of the ‘free’ online content we consume daily.
Luckily, we have a solution.
How to Eliminate Clickbait from Your Online Experience
- Sign into Freedom.to or create an account
- Once on your dashboard, click “Add a blocklist”
- Give your blocklist a name such as “Clickbait”
- Next, add two new domains to the blocklist:
- First, add outbrain.com, then click “add”
- Then, add taboola.com, and again click “add”
- Now it’s time to run a Freedom session
- Select the duration of the block
- Select blocklist “Clickbait”
- Select the devices you want the block to affect
- Start session and enjoy a clickbait-free online experience