Well hello there.
This blogalog already says things suck, which they do, and we can make them suck less, which we can. Todays topic is AdBlock Plus. It makes adblock suck less by adding whitelisting so certain sites which are accidentally blocked by their filters can get around it. The other benefit is it doesn’t crash firefox with the new version of flash, which is why its being spread.
Adblock Plus and Filterset.G work together with the provided Filterset.G updater extension to provide me with the latest ad blocking capability. Woot. The list also provides RegEx blocking so I get ads not covered by the system. Woot. AdBlock Plus removes ad divs from the page reorganizing the layout. BIG woot. That made The Register articles readable again without the huge vonage ads in the way.
However, there’s a downside. On RVTraderOnline.com, the ads for the rvs are removed from the page once they load. One big, blank page, for the most part. Adblock plus doesn’t give the user an easy way to fix this (in fact, the relatives geeks install adblock for as an incentive to move to firefox will blame firefox), but forces the user to either add the whitelist entry (which I did) or disable it. There’s a way to report false pos on the filterset forums, but is this any good for granny?
Ok, so we could probably use inline data on cool sites that get affected, such as the PlaneShift Banner Page (the entire rest of the page below the menu gets removed once it finishes loading), but then what about evil sites who catch wind and add that their flash movie ads are cool for me to watch? That won’t work fully. Maybe a trust metric? Nah, the chance my trusted friends would have been to the site and decided it was cool for me (like in Outfoxed) is pretty slim. So, no solution, right?
Amazon may have given us one. Here’s my proposed solution: take donations to pay for these hits (or better yet, allow users who participate to donate their money to another user instead of just forcing gift cert or bank withdrawl), and have mozilla for servers (i read it somewhere on mZ) export a png of how the page looked before the pages requested fixes, and how it looked after, as applied via adblock.
If the only difference is that ads are now shown, then the user would click that ads were added, and be paid for a job well done. This wouldn’t be useful only to adblock, but it’s what I was thinking of while I went to take a wee after noticing the problem again.
Attn Factoryjoe: Yes, this is in essence a microformat. I now hate myself.