Q: What’s the number one thing people want their browser to do?

A: Block ads.

Sometimes it’s worth reminding ourselves of the simple truths about online media and marketing.

Like the fact that, given the choice, a lot of people don’t want banner ads, pop-ups and other sundry promotional interruptions getting in the way of whatever they are dong.

I was reminded of this when Google kindly turned on the ability to add extensions for the Chrome browser on Macs today.

Number one on the list of things I could download to improve my browser was Ad-Block

And down there at the bottom you can see another version. Half a million unique users that don’t see a thing…

Error message marketing

Image: The first screen-shot of Chrome for OS X
Image: The first screen-shot of Chrome for OS X

I love the fact that the first screen shot for the Mac version of Chrome, Google’s browser, is an error message. And the launch date? No word, just an ambition to “have a multi-process browser limping by the end of the quarter.”

Where others would promise launch dates and then wince as they slip, where others would affect an expectation of perfection, message themselves into new levels of over-promise, Google just gets on with it and lets everyone know where it’s at.

Is this word-of-mouth marketing with an error message? I suppose, in a sense it is…