The natives are getting shoppable

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The fact that iOS9, now installed on more than half of all Apple mobile devices, supports ad-blocking for the first time has kicked up a dust storm of appeals for ethical media consumption and been hailed as the opening of a new front in the battle of Internet giants.

The rapid adoption of ad-blockers on Apple devices, combined with the continued increase elsewhere, surely raises questions about the viability of the revenue streams of media outfits large and small. Both display and programmatic ads — and therefore Google — stand to take a hit. But the third main source of current web advertising spend — “native” — may prove fairly immune. Native advertisements are disguised as content and thereby evade the ad-blockers’ inquisition.

Quietly, amid all this noise, the product team over at the Huffington Post yesterday unveiled a new prototype weapon destined for widespread use in this gathering war. Slotted innocuously below the fold in a humble bit of branded content in the Style section titled “Pants + Shirt = Ensemble: Perfect Outfit Math”, HuffPo rolled out its shiny new toy: images with an embedded “buy” button and shopping cart…

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