Well, 'useful' to you may or may not be 'useful' to others.
I agree that those who directly sell products would still be around. I said exactly as much. But it doesn't make them 'not ads'.
That's great that SoylentNews can survive on donations. It looks like they require $6K/yr? ($3K per 6 months? Although the previous 6/mo was only $2K.. so not sure what it is, long-term). Either way, I'm admittedly very impressed they can consistently make that.
But you're forgetting YouTube (pre-Google - without ads, they wouldn't have been around for Google to buy). Imgur. Reddit. Twitch (pre-whoeverthefuckownsthem now). Similarly, there are several dozen websites related to gaming (that aren't exclusively "journalism") I can rattle off that exist solely on ads. Even some of the oldschool sites I visited in my youth like Stileproject (before it jumped the shark) or SomethingAwful, which are entertainment and not "journalism", would never have lasted long without advertising revenue. Hell, even TPB has ads, because they have costs.
There are several-hundred million active domains of varying success. The internet doesn't exist solely on websites you know about.