Google Ads and Google Chrome

Google last week announced that they were going to enable AD Blocking as standard as part of Google Chrome. This is to try and clean up the Internet and make advertisements adhere to the new standards that have been set. Google’s Statement Building a better web for everyone is their statement and has information on the standards there too.

Now Google of late when Ads have been concerned has made quite a storm with their changes to the requirements for your YouTube channel to be monetizing, Total Reach was a channel that got cut. While this wasn’t a surprise and I hadn’t been that active with the channel in the last few months it led me to wonder why they were doing this. The reason is the amount of money in the pot is getting smaller or the number of people taking out of the pot is getting more and they want to protect their big money channels.

This makes perfect business sense but the announcement was saying how they are doing it to make sure that advertisements run on high quality videos, or non fake producers. This is what I didn’t like about the changes because it saying that content that smaller producers that put just as much time into their content but doesn’t have the following other people have videos aren’t good enough. You don’t bite the hand that feeds you though right?

That in mind I decided that I need to start putting more content together so I came to this blog to find out they had pulled support for their plugin to help you put ads easily into your site. While I have the no how to manually put the Google Adsense into my site, it just shows how Google aren’t supporting the little guy like they tend to try and do. With that I’ve pulled all ads from this site being well under the threshold I am going to be leaving the revenue I had made in limbo, as to be honest Total Reach the blog and YouTube channel has only ever made one threshold in 8 years or thereabouts.

Ad Blocking as default in Google Chrome is it a good idea?

I do like the concept and I do like the direction that it’s going in. That said I hope that Google do use it only to block adverts that don’t meet standards and doesn’t turn into away of blocking the competition. Moving forward however I’ve removed my ad blocker and now surfing with only what Chrome blocks and have found that there is a wide range of ads still getting through but they aren’t as intrusive as I remember them but I have used adblock plus or UBlock Origin for many years.

How do you feel about Google’s changes to YouTube Monetization and Chrome having a built in Adblock?

Joy Movie Review

Joy is a 2015 movie that has recently hit Netflix in the UK.  Joy is a biographical comedy that was directed by David O. Russell with Jennifer Lawrence starring in the lead role as Joy.  Didn’t know what to expect from this movie and although well acted from multiple members of the cast the movie’s pace just didn’t seem right.

Joy after doing some research was loosely based on self-made millionaire and  Joy Mangano and although the movie does have an air of being based on a true story the lack of setting the scene and details in some respects, were missing mainly the years that things happened.  That being said it was well structured for a fictional story because it was set out from Joy’s childhood and well explained, but that inability to understand what era this all took place in for a biographical picture just wasn’t great.

While being a very slow paced the desperation wasn’t quite there.  It felt as if she was going to win all the way through because all the hurdles she faced, there was no hardship for.  There was obviously huge hurdles in the story but as soon as Joy faced them, there was a near enough instant solution and with the pace of the movie, there could have been more of a build-up giving time to understand how dire the situation is for Joy.

Overall Joy is a movie that can be recommended if you like Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper because they owned their roles but expect quite a slow and erratic at times plot line.  Joy, however, will also appeal to anyone that believes in The Big American Dream.

Joy at best gets 5/10 for me because although great performances and based on a true story, just feel it could have been better paced and a bit more detail put into the story.  Giving the audience time to really appreciate the struggles the character was going through especially once she had gone into business.

How did you find Joy?

FIre and Fury – Michael Wolf Review

Fire and Fury by Michael Wolff is a non-fiction book that is focused on the first 18 months of Donald Trump’s Presidency.  The book takes on quite a few different points of view and opinions on how the White House under Trump has been run and can be at times quite insightful.  The reason for picking this book up was mainly because of the storm that surrounded it.  The intrigue was there to find out The President didn’t like about the book and to try and understand more about the man whether it is right or not.

First Edition Cover Fire and Fury
First Edition Cover of FIre and Fury by Michael Wolff

Fire and Fury starts from the election campaign and with the notation that:


“President Trump never really wanted to to be President he was just there for the fame a glory and that none of his team really thought he could win the race.”

As events unfold Michael brings in different views of the events and how and why Trump has made the decisions he has and the reasoning perhaps for his behaviour.  The book was narrative as if you were having a conversation with Michael about the events, and the interviews that he had, had with his sources without actually asking the questions.

The book has a nice flow to it, and at some places even feels like fiction.  While this could because the book leads you to wonder why the characters in question have a place in such roles.  However, the analysis of each individual feels really well done.  For all the negative that Michael brings up about the falls within in the Trump administration, it is backed up by theory and examples of why it is happening.

Having read this book as an Audiobook, it was interesting as the narration was done really well and I found myself able to move the speed up 1.5x and then found it even easier to get through without feeling like I was missing something or listening to a chipmunk.

Fire and Fury by Michael was an interest perceptive on the Trump administration. Along with being well structured and thought out.  I would highly recommend this book to anyone that has an intrigue or interest of the man that is Donald Trump or even politics.  Although I wouldn’t take this book as fact because it had moments of feeling like fiction but at the same time it seemed to be based on perspective and as such insightful.


Audio-book Thoughts

While out with friends we were discussing Audiobooks as I had been recently been using Podcasts as a way to chill before bed.  The problem being that for some reason I hadn’t been able to sleep properly, but to be honest that isn’t a huge deal as this isn’t uncommon for me to go through stages of not being able to get my full 8 hours even if I do need them.

However what I was finding this time around by listening to Podcasts, I was able to put a sleep timer on the player and it was a good way for me to chill out and what I was actually doing was setting an alarm so that I knew it would be time to stop what I was doing and get ready for bed and get listening to a podcast.  I do like crime relative podcasts and although they were working and I was able to learn while listening and it was allowing me also get myself into a routine and helping my sleep patterns.

So while discussing this with friends, and the topics that the podcasts while interesting they were starting to get heavy and it wasn’t quite what I wanted.  So while we were discussing this we talked about Audible and titles that my friend had listened to and although Sci-Fi related I wasn’t sure The Dresden Files.  I am not a huge fan of Wizards and stuff like that but this book was also a crime based book so I thought why not and signed up for my free audible book and got listening.

A set of Headphones plugged into a plain blue book
Book with Headphones

This was one of the best moves I have made, listening to fiction at night really was helping.  It was having the same effect of podcasts but not being as heavy as real crime and it took me about a week to complete the first book in the series.  This led me to cancel my subscription and reactive it and by doing that I ended up getting another credit to get the second book.  I also got through that within about a week and a half.  Having had a busy few weeks of late has had my routines not quite being there so things have slowed up thankfully because dealing with only having a book a month is not enough at the moment with books that are only 11 hours long.  That does seem strange when you put this in writing because 11 hours does seem quite a long time when you think about it.

In conclusion, I am really glad to have taken the time to give Audiobooks ago and although people will say its not really reading or it’s not the same as reading the book.  I would say there is an obvious difference but at the same time, it’s still the same story. As such I do plan on trying to write book reviews where possible.  I may need to re-listen to the book before writing them however because it’s been ages since I’ve written a book review and as such I want to read some guides to do them justice.

Have you tried Audiobooks however you found them?  Let me know and if you have any recommendations feel free to let me know in the comments below.

The Shallows Review

Wanting to get back into reviews after a particularly hard day at the office shall we say I picked up my phone and decided to randomly stop on a movie that was on the many on demand services that I use. Recently added to NOW TV is The Shallows.

While probably not the best genre at the time for both my physical and mental state. Anyone that knows me knows I jump at everything and this was a movie that was guaranteed to make me jump. I put it on anyway NOW TV had it at 3 stars so I wasn’t expecting much from it.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by this movie, the way in which they used the threat of shark and the performance of Blake Lively was brilliant. The synopsis of the movie is a medical student has gone soul-searching after the death of her mother, and has found it in surfing but she gets attacked by a Shark and on a remote beach and has to fight for survival.

Now most movies like this, concentrate on the Shark and show off all its teeth, but this one was different. Yes you do see the teeth and it is an imposing figure of fear when you do see the animal leave the water but I felt that they didn’t over use it, they relied on the threat more than its physical presence. The major thing that came from this, was half way through it left me wondering whether this was a true story or not?

After the movie however I did a quick Google and found that it wasn’t based on any true story, and a long list of reasons’ why people weren’t happy about the movie from a Science perspective. As some of the movie and the way shark was acting has not scientific evidence. However that said if they movie has you wondering whether it’s based on a true story or not then it must be doing something right?

In conclusion if your stuck for something to watch over this festive period and have a NOW TV/Sky Cinema in the UK I would recommend checking this movie out. It’s a suspense jump scare type horror, but has the right balance and left me question whether it was a true story or not?

Until Dawn Review

Until Dawn is a QT based game, which is highly story driven. If you guys haven’t guessed by some of the other reviews I’ve done, I really enjoy this style of game. Telltale is one of my favourite publishers and I am quite surprised I haven’t picked up this game before.

Until Dawn focuses around a group of teenagers that go to a Lodge on a Ski range where something strange is going on. It is a horror based story with quite a few jump scares but the story is really well told with some good twists and turns. Other scenes can be telegraphed and you can see coming but that just adds to the suspense.

Gameplay wise it has some interesting controls, which add to the emission. There is an option to have the controller in motion mode although through the run through I went to classic. There were still places in the game you had to hold the controller dead still not to move. While adding to emission sometimes it was hard to hold it still enough not to move your character and I do want to do another playthrough to see whether I can improve on that. The other part of the gameplay that is encouraging for a replay, is that all the really important decisions you make it pops up with Butterfly Effect Updated. Such a simple addition and Telltale do say at the beginning of their games, that your decisions affect the story but after that, there doesn’t remind you.

Overall I really enjoyed this game and can highly recommend it if you’re into horror and a high story is driven games. The flaws in this game can be its graphics even though amazing in some scenes others can be blocky. It has replay value after doing some research as well because you can save everyone in the game and that butterfly effect.