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A Campaign to Block Firefox Users? 1154

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the bad-ideas dept.
rarwes writes "A website is aiming at blocking Firefox users. This because a fraction of the Firefox users installed an Ad Blocker and are therefor 'stealing money' from website owners that use ads. They recommend using IE, Opera or IE tab. From the site: 'Demographics have shown that not only are FireFox users a somewhat small percentage of the internet, they actually are even smaller in terms of online spending, therefore blocking FireFox seems to have only minimal financial drawbacks, whereas ending resource theft has tremendous financial rewards for honest, hard-working website owners and developers.' Be interesting to see where they are getting their numbers from.
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A Campaign to Block Firefox Users?

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  • Then screw them.... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jddeluxe (965655) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:17PM (#20262547)
    ....don't need their stinking website!
    • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:24PM (#20262733)

      From the site: 'Demographics have shown that not only are FireFox users a somewhat small percentage of the internet, they actually are even smaller in terms of online spending, therefore blocking FireFox seems to have only minimal financial drawbacks, whereas ending resource theft has tremendous financial rewards for honest, hard-working website owners and developers.'

      I do almost all of my holiday and gift shopping on-line.

      On the other hand, I seldom ever click on ads on sites. I shop at on-line stores. I find those stores by searching Google for the items I want.

      So, yeah, it probably isn't in your best interest to have me use up your bandwidth to read your opinions on X in the hope that I might click on an ad for Y or Z.

      My time is valuable. What are you offering me as incentive to read your ads? Specifically.
      • by Oddscurity (1035974) * on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:31PM (#20262919)
        And I question their other dubious claim:

        Like free television broadcast content supported financially by advertising, much of the content on the Internet today is distributed free to end-users for an indirect exchange of advertisement revenue. When a user loads an ad-driven copyrighted website, he produces a copy of the work due to the inherent architecture of the Internet. If this user is using Adblock to screen out annoying advertisements, he is creating an unauthorized derivative work analogous to skipping television commercials. By the letter of copyright law, this practice would most likely be seen as an infringing use.
        Except that I'm not redistributing this supposed derivative work, now am I? (This bit was copied for the purposes of critique under the fair use doctrine.)
        • by empaler (130732) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:39PM (#20263123) Journal

          (This bit was copied for the purposes of critique under the fair use doctrine.)
          Thief! Hiding behind legal mumbo-jumbo doesn't change that you thievingly stole their article text!
        • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:39PM (#20263131)

          Except that I'm not redistributing this supposed derivative work, now am I?

          No, you're not.

          And his ... point? ... whatever ... is kind of like saying that the ads are PART of the "work" that he created.

          But the ads change. This is NOT like "product placement" in a movie. I cannot "fuzz out" a can of Mountain Dew (tm) in a movie. But whether I have to walk past an ad for Mountain Dew ON THE WAY INTO THE MOVIE or an ad for Coca Cola (tm) does NOT alter the "work" that is the movie.

          The frame is not the painting.
          • by anton544 (1142525) on Friday August 17, 2007 @03:47PM (#20266629)
            Anyone considered how a browser actually works? When you break it down, a web browser is not much more than and ftp client which a fancy presentation layer. It fetches files, parses them, and performs an action based on the data contained within a file. So what is a web site? Basically an anonymous ftp server. Now when I ftp to a server and download a file, I'm not required to download all of the other files in the same directory am I? A web site just is offering a collection of files. I get to choose which of those I want to retrieve and/or view.

            Now this owner suggests that viewing a page without viewing the ads is stealing. How? He offered to the public a file free of charge (the web page). If I decided to download it I may as I've been given authorization by the web site owner to do such. There is no stipulation that I also must download any other file and there was never any stipulation that I must view any file just because I've downloaded it.

            Now just because firefox (like most browsers) downloads most inclusive content (images, links, flash, etc file) and displays it as a default behavior does not mean that I'm not allowed to change the behavior of the browser running on MY system.


            Now why would firefox useers generate less revenue from clicking on ad banners and such? Is it ABP? No. Who uses Firefox? I'm willing to believe that most FF users consider themselves fairly computer literate (power users or better). Mostly because you are running a *nux OS and/or manually downloaded and installed it themselves. These people aren't likely to fall for whatever ridiculous claim the ad is making (make your member larger, a hot naked woman will fall instantly in love with you, make money without doing a damn thing, etc) and click on the banner.

            "Remember: there are lies, damn lies, and statistics."
            • Aside from the obvious differences between HTTP and FTP which complicate your case....

              I would make the case differently as follows:

              Web severs provide content in a number of formats including HTML, various image formats, and more. While image files, PDF's and other files specify in close detail the final appearance of content, HTML does not. It merely states general intents. The HTML browser is under no legal obligation to present the work using any specific method. For example, consuming the work and presenting it to the user could be done with or without graphics, printed on paged media or displayed in pageless media, or "performed" through a text-to-speech engine found on web browsers for those who either choose not to or cannot view the contents through a standard visual interface. All of these uses are accepted, standards-compliant uses of the content conforming with the content as it is distributed.

              It is therefore difficult to see how changing the presentation of structured information in an HTML document amounts to creating an unauthorized derivative work. Unlike skipping ads on a television show, an HTML document does *not* specify a medium of presentation nor would one be required to present it in a medium supporting the required advertisements (images in pop-ads would be skipped by screen readers anyway-- does this mean that screen readers are contributory infringers and such sites should start suing blind visitors?).

              I would however note that the content purveyors have the right to distribute the content how they see fit. It may be stupid and counterproductive to ban Firefox, but so is the Microsoft Free Fridays Apache module and nobody suggests that this cannot be installed on web servers. If figure that the trend away from requireing IE on sites offered to the public is a response to customer demand, and that fighting this demand is generally foolish anyway.

              If the aim is to block technologies which skip the ads, I wonder if they choose to block lynx, audio-based web browsers, etc. and whether the sites are Section 508 complaint. Picking on Firefox will do nothing but get the sites a bad reputation.
        • by COMON$ (806135) * on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:43PM (#20263191) Journal
          By the letter of copyright law, this practice would most likely be seen as an infringing use.

          Seems like a lot of speculation to me. As for the small fraction of the internet being firefox users, I can vouch for the fact that everyone I know that use firfox do a considerable amount of shopping online, as for the IE people...most of them stick to Ebay. But that is just my personal groups.

          However on a different note seen here (old article 2004 sorry) http://news.com.com/Firefox+users+ignore+online+ad s,+report+says/2100-1024_3-5479800.html [com.com]

          Yes Firefox users click on ads less...it isnt because they use firefox or ad blocker, it is because in my experience firefox users arent click happy, how many of you out there have spent hours removing viruses and spyware and malware because of a click happy IE user.

          Many many many projects out there make plenty of cash without advertisements what is the big deal with this site?

          I am fine with the site blocking firefox, they simply wont get my business or the business of any of the corporations purchase for, this amounts to a couple hundred grand a year, but what do I know, I am only one lowly firefox user.

          • by secPM_MS (1081961) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:59PM (#20265835)
            We have another of the RIAA-class advertising madman here. There is nowhere that I signed any contract to watch adds on TV, listen to adds on radio, or pay attention to adds on my browser. The broadcaster or web site made an agreement to display the adds with the advertiser, for which they were paid, in the expectation that some faction of the viewers would watch the adds and that some (much) smaller fraction of those watchers would have their shopping behavior influenced by the add. And contrary to what that fool thinks, IE is quite capable of blocking much of the advertising issues -- I run IE7 in enhanced security configuration - no Java, Javascript, Flash, etc. If I need to go to a website and use Javascript, I use FireFox with the no-script plugin -- and I do not grant running permission to add servers. And if I think that I am going to hostile site, I use opera with everything disabled, including images - in essence I am using Opera to render plaintext HTML on the grounds that it is probably kept more current than Lynx.

            I do expect that they will try to force advertising by integrating content with the advertising in active snap-ins, such as Flash. To the extent they do that, they drop off my radar -- I will never see them nor their associated products.

          • I'm a Firefox user. I use adblock. I use adblock because I never click on ads anyway. This would be true whether or not I used adblock, or whether or not I used Firefox. I still wouldn't click on an ad. The only ads I would click on are, say, Google ads that come up in response to a search, in which case the ad might be what I was searching for in the first place.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by markov_chain (202465)

          much of the content on the Internet today is distributed free to end-users for an indirect exchange of advertisement revenue.
          So does advertising really work? Do you know anyone who actually bought something through a banner ad, either directly or through subliminal suggestion? When I want to buy X, I either google it or walk into a store and pick out something reasonable.
        • by LithiumX (717017) on Friday August 17, 2007 @01:00PM (#20263545)
          It would help to use proper citation methods, such as author and source. :)

          When websites use simple banners or in-content ads, I never have any real problem with it. The exception to that is when the ad itself is far slower than the website calling it - then it chaps my hide.

          However, popups drive me nuts. It's annoying, it's extraordinarily rude to their users, and it only serves to amplify the ruthlessness of advertisers - who are starting to demand popups in order to gain advertising revenue. When site advertisements begin to reach that point, it approaches the level of spam.

          Regardless, it's the option of the person creating the website. If they want to block users who block popups, that's their right - though there is always a cost, in this case the loss of a stimulating audience that more often than not is either too young to have money to spend, or tend to have quite a bit of expendable cash (since it's usually the intelligent and resourceful who have both the good jobs and the popup blockers). If the goal of the site is to make money (something only cyberhippies seem to dislike), then by all means protect your profits. But if the population violating those ads is truly statistically insignificant, then why care (unless they're eating significant bandwidth)?

          If I were in his position, I'd base my assertion purely on popup blockers hiding themselves - which becomes a bit more of a hostile act, no matter how many people (like me) love it. It's purely a circumvention tool, and not one that falls under fair-use since they haven't paid for squat.

          Then again, I'd love to be part of any (non-radical) campaign to apply public pressure to some of the more... exuberant... advertisers - not to end web advertising (I enthusiastically embrace capitalism), but to keep it under some sort of realistic control.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by COMON$ (806135) *
            However, popups drive me nuts. It's annoying, it's extraordinarily rude to their users, and it only serves to amplify the ruthlessness of advertisers

            exactly, if I find a site with a java popup, it is strike one and I get peeved(weather.com is notorious for this ad), if I get a site where some music or auditory ad comes up it is strike 2 and I will never purchase the product being advertized), if the ad is still there next time I come to the site I will avoid the site as long as I am able.

      • by thanatos_x (1086171) on Friday August 17, 2007 @01:22PM (#20263981)
        You evil, evil person. Do you have any idea the effect you're having on the american economy by not viewing the '510,000$ mortgage for $1491' ads? Or what about the 'Punch the Monkey and get a PS3' Not embracing these ideals that we can get something for almost nothing is completely un-American.

        Bottom line? Be patriotic! Use IE 6! Punch the monkey! Take out a loan you can't afford!
      • "Their" claims (Score:5, Informative)

        by gaijin99 (143693) on Friday August 17, 2007 @01:35PM (#20264249) Journal
        Actually its not "their" claims, but "his" claims, the whole thing is just one crazy person. Bear in mind that the, um, individual, behind this is a complete loony toon of the extreme right wing religious nut variety. Seriously, check out his other stuff at jacklewis.net, unfortunately you can't read his insane ratings with Firefox, which is a shame because they're quite amusing.

        Given his nuthood I'd assume that he *thinks* that Firefox users are less likely to buy things online, and that somehow in the broken fragments of his mind that becomes transmuted into "demographs show that...." Pleanty of other nutbags do the same thing, why shouldn't he?
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by afidel (530433)
          unfortunately you can't read his insane ratings with Firefox, which is a shame because they're quite amusing.

          Sure you can, adblock plus user agent switcher = 0wnd. Btw, THAT is why I like Firefox, it gives me the user control over my net experience =)
    • Yawn. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Kadin2048 (468275) * <slashdot DOT kadin AT xoxy DOT net> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:24PM (#20262743) Homepage Journal
      I guess nobody's showed them AdBlock for Opera [mtsix.com] (or even Opera's built-in "content blocker" [mtsix.com], admittedly not quite as good as the real thing since it lacks regexps, though), or Ad Muncher [admuncher.com] for IE.

      Maybe when they find out about those, they'll do the world a favor and just block everybody from their site?

      Also ... does anyone think this may just be a troll / hoax? I've learned never to question the stupidity of people, particularly people on the Internet, but this seems like it's just a bit of a stretch. It kind of reminds me of an Adequacy.org post.

      The blocking that they seem to be advocating that others use is pretty standard "HTTP_USER_AGENT" querying using a PHP script, so it's not like it would be hard to get around. (Incidentally, I've always felt that the USER_AGENT header was something of a bad idea; maybe it's time to kill it, or at least disable replying to it by default?)

      What I'm slightly more interested in is how they're blocking the main page. It's not the same as the script that they're pushing; the page actually loads (you can view the source in FF), but it seems to take advantage of some rendering quirk in IE to produce a blank screen when rendered on Firefox. That actually strikes me as a little more subtle, although it's still dumb.
      • Generalizations (Score:3, Insightful)

        by benhocking (724439)

        I guess nobody's showed them AdBlock for Opera (or even Opera's built-in "content blocker", admittedly not quite as good as the real thing since it lacks regexps, though), or Ad Muncher for IE.
        Yes, but is the typical IE user ... sophisticated enough to use Ad Muncher, or rather to even know it exists? (I'll make no such comment about Opera.)
    • by jimstapleton (999106) on Friday August 17, 2007 @01:00PM (#20263565) Journal
      This firefox user does a lot of online shopping.

      Maybe they should deal with the soruce rather than the symptom.

      In my case, I don't block ads unless they hit one of four criteria:

      1) The play sound
      2) They show images that I consider NSFW - i.e. naked people, etc.
      3) The drain the resource of my system, with 1GB of memory and over 2Ghz of CPU
      4) They have offensive text (suggesting I'm an idiot for not using/buying from them, etc)

      So, if I'm blocking your advertisers, you need to find competant advertisers, rather than block me.
    • by WebCowboy (196209) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:00PM (#20264721)
      One of the comments on the "block Firefox" page was:

      If Internet Explorer came with a feature such as Adblock, you would effectively wipe out thousands of websites, maybe more.

      To which I'd reply:

      * Ad blockers are widely available for IE and many proxy servers as well (which block ads to ALL browsers--our corporate proxy blocks all sorts of content, including nearly all adservers). Yet all these adservers and crappy ad-laden websites continue to exist...unfortunately.

      * There are "Thousands of websites" (I'd say MILLIONS actually) that SHOULD be wiped out because their net contribution to the 'net is negative. If ad-blockers give consumers the ability to decide which sites those are then they perform an important public service.

      I'd also offer this argument: pushing excessive ads to my computer is theft of my processor time and bandwidth. I pay for my computer and for the monthly internet access so I can use them for what I wish. I am a reasonable person and expect that a lot of content is ad-supported and would find a reasonable amount of advertising to be acceptable. I am used to commercials consuming about 30 percent of TV programming time, and TV has survived on that for a long time. However, in recent times I have found that many sites literally devote MORE THAN HALF of their real-estate to advertising.

      The advertising is getting far too distracting as well: I regularly encounter pages with multiple flash and/or video-clip ads, and ads that play sound without asking or warning. Advertisers go out of their way to create workarounds to pop-up blockers and use AJAX, Java and Flash technology to make ads that dance all over your screen, obscure the real content and generally annoy the user as much as possible.

      The rights of corporate advertisers must be balanced with the rights of individual consumers, and, sorry to say Mr. Ad Exec, individual rights trump those of corporations. If you wound back a bit and limited your ads to 1/3 screen real-estate or relied on more considerate techniques like interstitial ads that played their message and politely got out of the way so the real content can be enjoyed, then the popularity of ad-blocking would be reduced substantially.

      By the way, would you like to know why your precious ad servers are blocked at our corporate proxy, listed right alongside things like myspace and horse porn? It is because they started generating so much traffic on our corporate WAN that the ads actually had a noticeable impact on overall intranet performance. That's right...big, responsible corporations are committing "mass theft" because they are tired of their bandwidth being stolen by aggressive advertisers!
    • Same old, same old (Score:4, Interesting)

      by MoxFulder (159829) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:36PM (#20265387) Homepage
      Political solutions to technical problems... as pathetic and ineffectual as ever :-) What a complete non-starter.

      If this "grassroots" Firefox-blocking effort takes off, we'll soon have a Firefox extension to spoof the IE UserAgent on any of the sites that blocks Firefox. Oh wait!!! It already exists [mozilla.org], and I'll bet with a little work it could be automated to spoof based on a database of anti-Firefox sites. Of course, all the savvy Firefox users will use this to avoid the block, and only our hapless grandmothers--who don't use Adblock anyway--will be stuck wondering why the Internet doesn't work. And absolutely NOTHING will have been accomplished.

      Our interconnected world is increasingly resistant to petty, arbitrary restrictions. Just witness the rise of region-free DVD players, modchips, and third-party ink cartridges... and the ridiculous, heavy-handed responses of the **AA, the game companies, and the printer manufacturers.

  • by HeavensBlade23 (946140) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:18PM (#20262565)
    Anyone savvy enough to block ads is probably savvy enough to have their browser present its user-agent as Internet Explorer if necessary.
    • by Shagg (99693) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:23PM (#20262707)
      Any website that thinks running Ad Blocker is "stealing" and "resource theft" is probably not worth visiting in the first place. Sounds to me like their only purpose is ad revenue.
      • by computational super (740265) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:09PM (#20264903)
        Any website that thinks running Ad Blocker is "stealing" and "resource theft" is probably not worth visiting in the first place.

        Actually, by not visiting the site, you're not visiting the ads either, and therefore still stealing. I suggest you turn yourself in now.

      • by Hoi Polloi (522990) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:34PM (#20265351) Journal
        If Firefox users are a small part of the browser population (according to them) and only some of them block ads, then doesn't it stand to reason that they would be a small burden to a website? I don't see how blocking them has any sort of "tremendous financial rewards".

        Since the website seems to be slashdotted I'd say they'd be better off blocking people coming from Slashdot.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Lumpy (12016)
      How about those of us that have a office wide install of privoxy running. No ad's get through to anyone inside the company or to any of the open accesspoints we have for customers.

      Every client we get that surfs here asks us, "How can we block ad's at my business" we give them the info and they seem to get their IT to do the same.

      Blocking Ad's reduces bandwidth use at a company on a very large scale.
    • by twitter (104583) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:36PM (#20263041) Homepage Journal

      This is almost always a mistake:

      Anyone savvy enough to block ads is probably savvy enough to have their browser present its user-agent as Internet Explorer if necessary.

      Necessary is the keyword, and no site dumb enough to do this is necessary. The site authors are misinformed if they think Firefox users are not affluent decision makers with significant if not majority of on line purchasing power. They might get more click through from the IE crowd, but advertising is mostly about brand awareness and click through is a misleading metric. A business that would exclude one in twenty of it's customers for having the wrong brand of anything is insane, and Firefox has way more than that kind of market share. Only a few M$ partners are going to do this and they will be punished with lower market share and revenue. Their advertisers will have their brands further besmirched by association with the lowest of the low and dishonest business practices.

      It's better to punish the offending site by going elsewhere. When you change your user agent, you tell the world that it's OK to do dumb stuff like this.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:45PM (#20263229)
      As the owner of a large european Porn network/site we cannot confirm these numbers. Actually according to our sales, it's the other way around, FF users are more likely to buy (porn) as they're often more experienced users with faster machines and used to buy stuff online.

      If anything, they should block users with dialup connections and Windows 9x, as they purchase less than average.

      Thats our experience in the porn-business.
  • by Gordonjcp (186804) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:18PM (#20262573) Homepage
    Particularly, don't use ads that jitter about by a couple of pixels, or flash bright contrasting colours. Not only do they not make me want to buy from you, they make me want to avoid *ever* buying from you.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Verteiron (224042)
      Right on. I block ads only if they annoy me. My personal annoying criteria includes the two things you mentioned, as well as text-covering flash ads. Those warrant an instant block, and I will usually leave any site that uses them immediately. Any ad with sound is instantly blocked. Any ad that says I just won something is instantly blocked. Any ad that tries to look like part of my GUI (and usually fails laughably) is blocked. Ads that tell me to "punch the monkey", "swat the bug" or in any other way encou
  • by mypalmike (454265) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:18PM (#20262575) Homepage
    Be interesting to see where they are getting their numbers from.

    I'm not actually that interested in looking up their arses.
  • Some nerve (Score:5, Insightful)

    by crashfrog (126007) <crashfrog@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:18PM (#20262579) Homepage
    You can send me the ad; I don't understand why I'm under an obligation to look at it or why you have the right to demand that my computer display it.
    • by AoT (107216) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:21PM (#20262641) Homepage Journal
      It's like how the newspaper companies force you to read the classifieds.
    • justified (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DreadSpoon (653424)
      Because you're going to HIS site. He gets paid to support said site by your browsing displaying the ads, which is tracked by image requests to the ad server. The ad blocker extensions usually ignore the ads entirely, so the browser doesn't generate any hits for the ad, and the site owner loses money.

      He wouldn't have a problem if the ad blocker would still generate a hit but use CSS to make the image hidden on the browser. Of course, the ad companies themselves would then have a huge problem with that, si
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by fruitbane (454488)
        When I watch TV I'm not obligated to sit and watch the commercials. I can get up and do something else. I can even, heaven forbid, click the remote and go to another channel for a few minutes to avoid those ads. Furthermore, the way web page technology originated and was designed, there is no rule, spoken or unspoken, that I have to view your web page the way you intend me to. If you want it to look the same way all the time you need to be using Flash or displaying PDFs, not HTML and basic web technologies.
      • Re:justified (Score:5, Insightful)

        by jkerman (74317) on Friday August 17, 2007 @01:09PM (#20263749)
        Its not my fault your business model doesnt work.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Morgon (27979)
      Because you're requesting information from their website!

      As a website owner, I know exactly where these people are coming from (though I still recommend people use FF over IE). I've frequently had to explain the difference between the website hits my reporting tools tell me and the actual ad hits my advertisers see (or don't see, in this case)

      I agree that there's "good" advertising and "bad" advertising. I'm very conscious about what types of ads display on my site. Text ads usually have fairly free roam, b
      • Re:Some nerve (Score:4, Interesting)

        by TheRaven64 (641858) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:55PM (#20263425) Journal

        I don't understand the big deal with ad blocking. Just block sites that abuse their right to advertise by running 'spaz-ads' or other intrusive campaigns, allow other people to provide the services you came there to use.
        That's exactly what I do. I don't run an ad blocker, but I do have a custom stylesheet. If someone is using irritating advertising techniques (my pet peeve is the ones that turn random words in an article into ads), then the advertising domain is permanently blocked, and any link that points to the site that was showing the ads gets a red warning after it. Unless I really want to see the content on the page, I will avoid clicking on those links, and so not even see the site's nonintrusive adverts.
  • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:18PM (#20262587) Homepage Journal
    I hit a lot of websites and I've never been redirected to this page. Does anybody actually use it, or is it something someone tossed up just to generate flames (AKA a troll)?
  • can't view (Score:5, Funny)

    by excelsior_gr (969383) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:19PM (#20262595)
    I tried to look at the website but I can't. Any ideas?
    Oh, wait...
  • Hm... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tgatliff (311583) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:20PM (#20262615)
    So is this the point where we starting hearing that blocking ads is just like running out of the store with a pair of blue jeans? I mean really...

    At what point do businesses start realize they they are providers of information and not the gate keepers for information...
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Lumpy (12016)
      Actually it's worse, it's not only like running out the store iwth a pair of jeans it's also dropping 6-7 caps in the arse of the old fart at the door and painting your gang sign across the glass as well.

      blocking ad's is WORSE than downloading music, Tv shows or software.

      Blocking ad's is MURDER!
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Chris Burke (6130)
      So is this the point where we starting hearing that blocking ads is just like running out of the store with a pair of blue jeans? I mean really...

      Yes, absolutely. Already we have TV execs and MPAA representatives saying that watching TV -- broadcast or cable -- without watching the ads is theft. Like if you hit the mute button to talk with your girlfriend, or get up to use the bathroom, you might as well have gone into Jack Valenti's house and grabbed a vase off his mantle. The mentality is already there
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Stanistani (808333)
        >you might as well have gone into Jack Valenti's house and grabbed a vase off his mantle...

        So we're stealing from the dead, too? OMG, that vase might have contained his ashes!
  • WTF (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The MAZZTer (911996) <megazzt@@@gmail...com> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:22PM (#20262663) Homepage

    Ok... let's break this down...

    1. If I use Adblock, this implies that I specifically installed it because I do not want to look at ads, so I block them.
    2. It follows that if Adblock was not available, I would ignore ads and not click on them. If they are particularly irritating, I would complain to the webmaster, so Adblock actually does them a favor.
    3. Also, since I know enough to find and install Adblock, I can also find and install ad blockers for other browsers.
    4. It also follows that since I can install Adblock, I also may know about other extensions such as User Agent Switcher, which can be used to easily bypass most browser checks. The rest can be bypassed by using Adblock to block whatever JavaScript file is checking for browser-specific behavior. Yay for irony!
    5. Furthermore, if I see a website which discriminates against me based on browser use, I am likely to go elsewhere where I can be treated more fairly.
  • Text of page (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ravenscall (12240) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:22PM (#20262685)
    You've reached this page because the site you were trying to visit now blocks the FireFox browser.

    The Mozilla Foundation and its Commercial arm, the Mozilla Corporation, has allowed and endorsed Ad Block Plus, a plug-in that blocks advertisement on web sites and also prevents site owners from blocking people using it. Software that blocks all advertisement is an infringement of the rights of web site owners and developers. Numerous web sites exist in order to provide quality content in exchange for displaying ads. Accessing the content while blocking the ads, therefore would be no less than stealing. Millions of hard working people are being robbed of their time and effort by this type of software. Many site owners therefore install scripts that prevent people using ad blocking software from accessing their site. That is their right as the site owner to insist that the use of their resources accompanies the presence of the ads.

    While blanket ad blocking in general is still theft, the real problem is Ad Block Plus's unwillingness to allow individual site owners the freedom to block people using their plug-in. Blocking FireFox is the only alternative. Demographics have shown that not only are FireFox users a somewhat small percentage of the internet, they actually are even smaller in terms of online spending, therefore blocking FireFox seems to have only minimal financial drawbacks, whereas ending resource theft has tremendous financial rewards for honest, hard-working website owners and developers..

    Since the makers of Ad Block Plus as well as the filter subscriptions that accompany it refuse to allow website owners control over their own intellectual property, and since FireFox actively endorses Ad Block Plus, the sites linking to this page are now blocking FireFox until the resource theft is stopped.

    Netscape users can simply set their browser to IE mode to continue to enjoy the site that sent you here. FireFox users can use Internet Explorer, Opera or Netscape (in IE mode) to access it. FireFox users also have the option of using the IE Tab plug-in which uses the IE rendering engine to display pages, but also disables the Ad Block Plus plug-in.

    If you are offended by the Mozilla Corporation's endorsement of dishonesty please contact the Mozilla Foundation and ask them to stop empowering internet theft.

    Other comments on ad blocking...

    PopularTechnology.net--Why Adblock is bad for the "free" Internet

            Adblock effectively robs these free sites of their revenue. If Internet Explorer came with a feature such as Adblock, you would effectively wipe out thousands of websites, maybe more. These are the same free sites users of Adblock frequently visit. The irony is how this is self-defeating.

    Information Technology and the Law--Firefox Adblock a Contributory Infringer?

            Judge Posner, elucidating the holdings of WGN v. United Video (1982) among others, reasoned in Aimster that:

                    "[Commercial-skipping] amounted to creating an unauthorized derivative work, namely a commercial-free copy that would reduce the copyright owner's income from his original program, since "free" television programs are financed by the purchase of commercials by advertisers."

            Like free television broadcast content supported financially by advertising, much of the content on the Internet today is distributed free to end-users for an indirect exchange of advertisement revenue. When a user loads an ad-driven copyrighted website, he produces a copy of the work due to the inherent architecture of the Internet. If this user is using Adblock to screen out annoying advertisements, he is creating an unauthorized derivative work analogous to skipping television commercials. By the letter of copyright law, this practice would most likely be seen as an infringing use.
  • by OmegaBlac (752432) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:28PM (#20262835)
    They must not know that Opera has an ad blocking feature built-in, and like Firefox, IE has ad blocking add-ons also. Will they also block text browsers such as Links since I can't see there image/flash crap ads also? Why single out Firefox/adblock? I guess any site that only depends on ads to earn revenue and is willing engage in blocking a certain segment of web users, must be devoid of any interesting content and not worth my time anyways.
  • by lofoforabr (751004) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:33PM (#20262947) Homepage
    Look at the header of that page:

    <meta name="GENERATOR" content="Microsoft FrontPage 4.0">
    <meta name="ProgId" content="FrontPage.Editor.Document">

    I guess they just can't make decent HTML that work on every browser, and blame firefox for their stupidity, after all, things that work good and nice in IE display crappy in Firefox. Instead of learning to do proper HTML, they just want to block firefox so everyone will see their crappy html right.
  • why block ads anyway (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fastest fascist (1086001) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:33PM (#20262963)
    Who needs adblockers anyway? My brain quite successfully filters out all banner ads. I just skip right past them, at most I recall there was a rectangular area on the page I ignored. The ads that pop-up over the content, requiring you to manually close them to continue reading are a bit more annoying, but I find I'm getting pretty good at clicking the close buttons without even seeing what the ad is for.

    You see ads if you want to see ads. On the internet, anyway. On TV (not that I watch nowadays), radio (not that I listen to it nowadays) and outdoors (although I try to avoid the centrum nowadays) I find them more annoying.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by vorpal22 (114901)
      I'm jealous of your brain. While I can successfully filter out static ads (e.g. I never notice adverts in magazines or newspapers), these days many web-based ads are animated GIFs or Flash animation, and at least for me, are much more difficult to overlook. The motion and colour changes constantly distract me from the page's content, forcing me to repeatedly have to refocus and thus making me take much longer to make it through an article.

      If the web had stuck to non-pop up, non-pop under static ads, I proba
  • by cyfer2000 (548592) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:33PM (#20262977) Journal
    The annoying things will be washed away while the really useful things will flourish. Welcome to the web Ad 2.0.
  • by linuxwrangler (582055) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:35PM (#20263017)
    whois whyfirefoxisblocked.com...
    Registrant:
          Danny Carlton
          19724 E Pine St
          Suite #149
          Catoosa, Oklahoma 75015
          United States

    See also, dannycarlton.com/net/org.

    Living in Cantoosa must leave you with lot of time to ponder the big questions and it seems like Danny has plenty of opinions. His blog (which does not, by the way, block FireFox) includes his opinions on everything from homeshooling to "Jesus Camp" to pet food names like "baby-poop mustard" (to distinguish the fancy kind from plain yellow) and "booger bread" (9-grain style).

    All we have here is an insignificant Internet rant. Nothing original there.
  • by Fry-kun (619632) on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:35PM (#20263029)
    I consider my smells copyrighted and wearing a gas mask while being in my proximity is an infringement of my rights, as the smells are blocked. Please understand that this extreme measure is necessary, since the unique cacophony of smells usually causes nearby people to give me money to leave their vicinity - but those who would wear a gas mask aren't forced to do so. It's bad for business.
  • by mellonhead (137423) <slashdot.swbell@net> on Friday August 17, 2007 @12:38PM (#20263109) Homepage Journal
    "...they actually are even smaller in terms of online spending, therefore blocking FireFox seems to have only minimal financial drawbacks..."

    "...whereas ending resource theft has tremendous financial rewards..."
  • by OrangeTide (124937) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:09PM (#20264901) Homepage Journal
    I manage to fund a website without intrusive ads. A colo'd server is not really that expensive. If you want to pull in revenue you could try selling a useful product or service. For example if you run a free forum website, sell "premium" membership.

    Ads that are poorly targeted to my demographic COSTS YOU MONEY. You waste bandwidth trying to send me information about things I won't buy. I would argue well targeted advertising is what is important to the well being of the internet, not all ads. Ad blockers stop the throw-everything-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks sort of advertisements.

    I'm sorry if it's so much work to get customers, but the key to having customers that spend money is establishing a relationship with customers and with potential customers. Just pasting fliers all around town or shoving 4 or 5 pop-unders under my browse window is not going to establish a relationship.

    TV and Radio have advertisements and commercial skipping is protected mostly because running a broadcast station is quite expensive. Putting a server on the net is only as expensive as the number of hits you get (bandwidth/load), it scales very linearly. If you can't figure out how to turn hits into revenue, stopping ad blocker is only going to keep you from wasting bandwidth on those minority of users. It won't actually fix your broken business model.

    The Internet is a very competitive free market, you must adapt to survive!
  • um no (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bitspotter (455598) on Friday August 17, 2007 @02:36PM (#20265403) Journal
    Why would I want to block perfectly good paying customers who don't have ad block installed, just because they're using the same browser as some who do?

    I don't know what you're selling, but you must not be selling much of it if the bandwidth costs for not serving blocked ads (er... yeah, how's that work, exactly?) outweighs your sales revenue, or those of your ad customers.

    Never mind the ludicrousness of this from the user perspective; this doesn't even make sense from a business perspective.

    Are there any ad blockers for MSIE? Maybe he can block that too - on this site. We won't miss you, and yes, we'll keep making money, unlike you.

    Sheesh, learn to do business.
  • by kwiqsilver (585008) on Friday August 17, 2007 @03:07PM (#20265987)
    Ten to one says he fast forwards his Tivo through commercial.

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