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FTC Shuts Down 'Pop-Up Trapping' Sites

timothy posted more than 12 years ago | from the and-good-riddance dept.

The Internet 442

Masem writes: "The FTC today ordered the shutdown of 5,500 sites owned by John Zuccarini, all of them the so-called 'typo' sites that common mis-entered URLs for popular sites (such as Annakurnikova.com); when the user visits these sites, their back button behavior in most popular browsers is modified as to open multiple pop-ups featuring ads for adult entertainment and gambling sites when pressed, and uses other technology to basically 'trap' the browser until the entire application has to be closed. While some sites are still operating, the FTC is going to take this matter to court, which may decide exactly how much control a web site can take over the end browser using JavaScript and ActiveX. CNet has the full story." Le Marteau contributes a link to the same story at the Washington Post.

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442 comments

Thank God! (4, Funny)

SpanishInquisition (127269) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375450)

I can know go back to browsing porn at work without the fear of getting caught.

Re:Thank God! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375471)

You can still get the porn you enjoy from here [goatse.cx] . Fuck off, SI, you trollbusting asshole.

- The AC Avenger

I like to take it up the ass!

Re:Thank God! (0)

SpanishInquisition (127269) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375481)

s/know/now/

(Use the Preview Button! Check those URLs! Don't forget the http://!)

Re:Thank God! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375490)

Oh, by the way, I claim your fp, and all other first posts, as my own.

- The AC Avenger

I like to take it up the ass!

Re:Thank God! (4, Funny)

tbmaddux (145207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375579)

You don't even have to worry if you are "caught" visiting porno sites. Just claim that you were "trapped!" From the original article: "The scheme is especially harmful to children or employees who may put their jobs at risk when they inadvertently call up pornographic or gambling-related material, the FTC said." (bold emphasis added)

But seriously, I for one am glad the federal government is on top of this case. Just think of all the shoppers out there who were innocently looking to buy cupcakes online [ftc.gov] and got drawn into this insidious web of browser betrayal.

Now, could they do something about my problem? Every time I buy a new car, the trunk turns out to be mysteriously stuffed with black 30-gallon trash bags full of child pornography, gambling tokens, and a substantial fraction of body parts that somebody must be missing...

What I'm wondering is (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375620)

...when was the last time a First Post got modded up twice?

The FTC, not the FCC ... (3, Redundant)

taniwha (70410) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375452)

'nuf said

Re:The FTC, not the FCC ... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375493)

nothing like READING THE ARTICLES, hey guys?

About Damn time (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375453)

I dont know about everyone else, but i see this a a major milestone in the campaign to get rid of spam!

hmmm.... (2, Funny)

jonfromspace (179394) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375455)

What about all the Porn sites that do this... I sure could use the FCC's help there :)

Well, it is a start I guess...

Re:hmmm.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375528)

I am an anonymous coward.

Re:hmmm.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375548)

I am an anonymous crawfish.

Re:hmmm.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375626)

I am an eponymous crawdad.

frosty piss (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375457)

fuck pops ups!

Have you kicked a Muslim today? (-1)

CmdrTaco on (468152) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375458)

Seriously, keep away from them. They smell too.

Uh huh... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375462)

What gets me is not that someone registered those names and cybersquatted (I'm all for that), but that this kind of annoyance (popup Spam) is actually clicked through and these Casinos, fake/genuine Viagra, etc. sites make any money at all.

Are you the one clicking on them?

Blah blah blah... "IE sucks cuz I can turn off popups in Moz..."

whoa....not at the top of my list (2, Interesting)

ruebarb (114845) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375463)

Finally, a practical use for the FCC...Thank God. This is one of the few times where a little government intervention wouldn't hurt.

Try explaining to your boss why the firewall detected all these adult site alerts when all you were trying to do was look for Dana Bourgouis guitars...

Or your wife/girlfriend for that matter.

RB

Re:whoa....not at the top of my list (1, Redundant)

TBone (5692) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375510)

Bah, the only reason my wife gets mad at me for looking at porn is when I don't share and show her some of the wierd crap that shows up in those popups :)

Re:whoa....not at the top of my list (2)

frknfrk (127417) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375593)

i doubt my wife will be figuring out how to read the firewall logs any time soon.

not that she's incapable, but as far as she cares, the server room is 'the place where if i go in, the internet stops working!'.

-sam

Wow! (4, Interesting)

Red Aardvark House (523181) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375472)

And I thought X-10 was bad!

This type of advertising only frustrates users and creates animosity between advertiser and potential customer. This is an obvious and sometimes extreme nuisance, having to shut down your broweser at times!

Alienating your audience is not a good business practice.

Re:Wow! (5, Insightful)

edhall (10025) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375553)

The guy was only exploiting a system that pays money based on "impressions" or "exposures." He set up traps that generated as many ad exposures as possible, but it made no difference to him whether the ads made a possitive impression on anyone.

This is why most of the ads were for porn, since he needed advertisers who didn't check what the presentation of their ads would look like or the nature of the site itself. Outside of porn, few advertisers are that lax any more. I'm sure that, given a choice, even porn advertisers would want a "friendlier" presentation than this guy gave them. But they don't care enough to even check. In the mean time, this guy was raking in a hundred or more ad exposures per victim.

-Ed

Re:Wow! (4, Insightful)

dragons_flight (515217) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375644)

According to this US News report [usnews.com] , X10.com had the 14th highest traffic of any domain in the month of august. Pretty impressive for a site that sells something almost no one wants.

Has anyone else noticed that their special deals are always about to expire in the next day or two, and yet the offer itself doesn't change for weeks on end. Maybe someone should get them on deceptive advertising?

How cool can it be? (0, Offtopic)

staticdragon (95211) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375476)

Seems like a good idea that has the ability to become something really big. Being able to power your PDA, mp3 player, etc all without any batteries does seem kinda cool. A few questions though. Wonder if the 'battery' would be cold to the touch? Would it be appliable to the skin, or under the skin? How far up can this be scaled? I saw the plans for the 3.0v version, how about 9.5?

Re:How cool can it be? (0, Troll)

MadAhab (40080) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375523)

Offtopic? Give me a fucking break. Slashdot has always had some bug that causes posts to end up on the wrong article now and then.

Re:How cool can it be? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375613)

Your error is that you view the moderation system as a way of 'rewarding' people by giving them mod points and karma.

That is only a side effect. The main purpose of moderation is to improve the content of the site.

FTC, not FCC (2, Redundant)

GrenDel Fuego (2558) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375477)

This was the federal trade commission, not the Federal Communication Commission.

I was curious when they became involved with net traffic.

Re:FTC, not FCC (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375503)

nothing like READING THE ARTICLES, hey guys?

another step towards the ruin of the web. (3, Insightful)

Cheetahfeathers (93473) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375478)

As much as I hate popups like that, government regulation of such is even worse. Also, what can they do about overseas sites? Are they going to try and put it under the same controls as overseas TV broadcasts?

The proper way to fix this is to fix the browsers so they don't allow this to happen.

FCC, stay the hell out of the net.

Re:another step towards the ruin of the web. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375513)

I agree. Believe me, I would love to see the end of all this control that web sites can have, but I don't think the government should be the ones who have the say. Software does a good job at being able to stop this. Don't like all those pop-up ads? Disable JavaScript (on a per-site basis for example). It should be up to the user what can and can't be done on thier machine, not the government.

Re:another step towards the ruin of the web. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375550)

Doesn't Mozilla have a nice feature to disable
the document.open() method in javascript? You
are definitely right, this needs to be fixed in code, not in the lawbooks. When will governments learn that this little box changes alot faster than all those shelves of paper lawbooks? But then again, people run windows and think it's ok, it's no wonder people go with our government and think it's ok.

Re:another step towards the ruin of the web. (1)

cyb3r0ptx (106843) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375591)

"Doesn't Mozilla have a nice feature to disable the document.open() method in javascript?"

Yes, which is why Mozilla has become my browser of choice. I use it not for the pr0n sites (surprisingly) but the majority of 'legitimate' sites that believe that annoying their users w/ pop-ups is a good idea.

The feature that you speak of can be found HERE [google.com] . You might also want to take a look at the Configurable Security Policies [mozilla.org] for Mozilla. These features are nice, but the only drawback is that there isn't a good GUI to add/remove sites from your blocklist.

Mod parent UP (1)

The Panther! (448321) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375580)

I was going to post this, but you beat me to it, and in fewer words.

Re:another step towards the ruin of the web. (1)

BlueTurnip (314915) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375602)

Bravo! A voice of reason.

Once again people seem to be looking to the government to solve problems they can solve themselves, by using an appropriate browser and learning how to configure it!

By lazily handing this problem over to the government and allowing them to "solve" it, we are setting more precedents which erode our First Amendment rights. Honestly, do we really want the government telling us how we can and can't write JavaScript programs?

Re:another step towards the ruin of the web. (1)

frknfrk (127417) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375614)

you know, that's a good point. it's funny that we cry and bitch and moan because instead of letting us fight technology (CSS) with technology (DeCSS), the government passes a law.

here, because the end result is SPAM or annoying pop-ups, suddenly we start cheering, instead of demanding that we be allowed to police ourselves when it comes to technology? the great answer is corporations shouldn't have protection against technology, but our mail inboxes and browser windows should?

btw, it was the FTC, not the FCC (redundant, i know, i've seen it pointed out a few times already).

-sam

Trapping Sites (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375485)

"Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in."

FTC not FCC (1, Redundant)

billscarwasher (73764) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375486)

The title should be FTC, not FCC. BIG difference...

Re:FTC not FCC (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375516)

nothing like READING THE ARTICLES, hey guys?

hey, he is trying... (5, Funny)

Karmageddon (186836) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375488)

The district court has ordered Zuccarini to take his sites offline, the FTC said, while the case continues. But as of early Monday afternoon, at least one site registered to Zuccarini, Annakurnikova.com, was still functional.

Hey, give the guy a break, he's trying. He closes down most of his sites, but whenever he hits the "back" button they all start up again. Those damn javascript-based admin tools...

Neverending popup... (4, Funny)

FortKnox (169099) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375489)

Hope this will include the "Neverending popup", where you point to a site that popups a copy of itself, which popups a copy of itself, which popups a copy of itself...

I think the troll link "comp-u-geek.com" (DON'T GO THERE!) does that...

Re:Neverending popup... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375504)

Neverending popups make me want to meet their authors in dark alleys and hurt them in unusual ways.

Re:Neverending popup... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375590)

.net, not .com. Actually, the site's been down for a while, so we just have to link to the goatse guy, via geeknotes if we're bored.

Re:Neverending popup... (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375606)

Heh.. comp-u-geek is a legitimate website. But I'm sure they'll appreciate ./ effect. Though I doubt we're the target audience for home lessons of Outlook Express.

Oops (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375616)

Oops, ./ should have been /. Hopefully we were in the root directory to start with so it doesn't make a difference.

Umm... (-1, Redundant)

Tolchz (19162) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375492)

It's FTC not FCC

Re:Umm... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375542)

nothing like READING THE ARTICLES, hey guys?

but sites still exist (2, Insightful)

nilstar (412094) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375494)

what about all the non-typo sites that exist? Well, how about using the no-popup feature of mozilla/netscape 6.x and dump the ie browser!

good! I've always hated Zuccinni (4, Insightful)

Telek (410366) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375495)

er, I mean Zuccarini.

But seriously. There's a fine line between .. no scratch that, there's a night and day difference between registering typo sites and displaying a pile of non-porn ads, and registering those sites and trapping the user in a net where they can't get out and displaying pornography to them for the sole intent of making a buck. especially when said users could be children or people who find pornography offensive.

I've seen a few sites who grab a typo site and just use it to promote their own (not indecent) site, but also provide a link on their site to the site that "you might have wanted" instead. I think that's fair enough, no big harm there, but to intentionally trap people. Wow. I never thought I'd be praising government intervention on the internet...

Re:good! I've always hated Zuccinni (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375634)

I've seen a few sites who grab a typo site and just use it to promote their own (not indecent) site, but also provide a link on their site to the site that "you might have wanted" instead. I think that's fair enough, no big harm there, but to intentionally trap people. Wow. I never thought I'd be praising government intervention on the internet...

Funny you mention typos and the governement. There is an interesting article [whitehouse.com] just about that on the whitehouse site.

Cheers,

--fred

Does all this really work though? (5, Interesting)

GreyyGuy (91753) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375496)

One thing that surprised me is that this slime ball has been sued for this before and lost 57 cases tied to 200 domain names and been fined $800,000 to $1,000,000. And he's still doing it. The only reason he would still be doing this is if it is profitable, above and beyond court costs and fines.

Who is falling for all this and patronizing the sites that trap you like this?

Re:Does all this really work though? (1)

HerrNewton (39310) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375563)

he's probably making his money on impressions, not clicks.

Another reason (1)

bjsvec (19546) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375571)

He is probably not paying the fines.

If I got a $800,000 fine I wouldn't be able to pay it.. so what happens then?

Re:Another reason (1)

BlowCat (216402) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375638)

Perhaps you declare bankruptcy and live 7 (or 10?) years without credit cards.

Not a big deal unless you are running a business.

IANAL. YMMV.

Re:Does all this really work though? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375636)

I dunno about the rest of you, but every time I see an ad advertising for "Free Live Nude Chicks", or "Beautiful Women Want to Have Sex with You NOW!", I'm there in a heartbest!

Accountability (0, Flamebait)

sosedada (97525) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375501)

This is a wickedly ingenious trick.

To get caught by this you have to do 2 stupid things:
1) type the wrong url
2) Have JavaScript / ActiveX enabled

I'm not sure, but running Windows probably makes you a lot more susceptible. That would make 3 stupid things.

Is it so wrong to capitalize on that?

Re:Accountability (1)

Snootch (453246) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375556)

I'm not sure, but running Windows probably makes you a lot more susceptible.

I sincerely hope you're joking. All you need is a Javascript-enable browser! Making capital out of stupid people is what Microsoft seems to be famous for. I wouldn't want that kinda press myself...

Re:Accountability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375565)

Yeah, and I hid a bear trap in a mud puddle next to the road. People would have to be stupid enough to a) walk along the side of the road, and b) step in a mud puddle, before they could get trapped and have to saw their own leg off. What's so wrong with that? </sarcasm>

Re:Accountability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375592)

I am astonished that this was modded interesting.

Joy!!! Let the courts decide!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375502)

Cause they've already proven themselves to be master arbiters of technical policy.

They should suck hot grits out my petrefied penis.

Update: (0, Troll)

linux4life (525779) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375505)

I'm not sure if he was taken in for questioning or if he was actually arrested for this. I didn't know that this was an actual arrestable offence, but there's an image [about] of him being (what looks like) actually arrested on Linux Today.

WARNING! GOATSECX LINK! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375549)

nt

Re:Update: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375558)

Don't Click the parent link

It's a goatse.cx troll.

Fix this At Browser (5, Insightful)

Rashkae (59673) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375509)

Even though I'm sure we all had good intentions (if not complete thoughlessness) when all these cool features were added to JavaScript. But really, isn't it time that this gets fixed at the Browser end? I cannot think of *any* good reason for browsers to allow JavaScript to modify how buttons like Back and Close opperate without confirmation by the user. (it would also be trivial to apply a reasonable limit, like say 3, to pop-up windows). Microsoft and Netscape should both be *really* embarrassed that this issue is being addressed by the governent and potential legislation before they've even had a chance to suggest ways of fixing the situation.

Re:Fix this At Browser (1)

weez75 (34298) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375533)

I think we should go with the multiple-document interface. I know it's a pain, but be able to launch 4 or five sites within the same application window instead of launch entirely new browsers. Then within the application have a setting that limits the number of branched or spawned sites. That would make me happy and still allow me to use the javascript features.

Re:Fix this At Browser (1)

Si (9816) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375570)

Which, of course, is what opera [opera.com] does.

Re:Fix this At Browser (1)

weez75 (34298) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375643)

Exactly, just as older verions of Mozilla and Mosaic did...

Re:Fix this At Browser (5, Insightful)

JoeShmoe (90109) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375575)

I think it is especially embarassing that Microsoft/Netscape cannot grandularize the ActiveX or JavaScript functionality. Your choices are "Run All" or "Run None". There needs to be a way to differetiate between normal redirection (which is often used by legit sites)or pop ups (which is of course used in advertising) and those malicious elements such as "On Back" or "On Close" or "Maximize Full Screen with no buttons anywhere". I cannot stand it when I have a button in my taskbar that refuses to respond to a right-click Close command. That kind of control interferes with my GUI and should not be tolerated.

- JoeShmoe

Why does the govt. have to regulate this? (2)

StaticLimit (26017) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375518)

This is a client-side browser issue. If we had a competative browser market, someone might find it useful to "innovate" a feature into the browser to disable popups, or cue up the popups and let the user decide whether to let them fire.

Was it Konquerer that put a similar feature into their browser? If so, big huge kudos to them.

Regardless, I don't see Microsoft champing at the bit to reduce end-user annoyance over this, and I'm surprised, because I can't imagine how the IE team can browse the web without getting fed up with that crap and saying "fsck (or maybe chkdsk) it! I'm going to "innovate" a way to stop this!".

- StaticLimit

Seriously... (2)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375521)

this shouldnt' fall under the jurisdiction of the fcc?
I thought the FCC was there to regulate certain things... like radio, and television (as it's broadcast, and involves many public concessions to work, right-of-way, etc).

How can they dicatate what a website can do? Sheesh.

5500 Sites! Curious. (3)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375524)

Wheres he hosting all these sites?
Where is he buying his domains from?
What OS is he using?

Sounds like alot of work for popup sites, he must be making damn good money after lawsuits.

Since When (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375529)

Since when did the FCC have the Legal right to regulate Internet Content?

Some might argue (2)

jd (1658) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375531)

That this is Bad and Wrong, that the Free Market should decide, and freedom should be for all. Well, aside from the fact that those people can bugger off, you could argue this two ways:
  • The "Free Market" wasn't free, that it had been kidnapped by a pack of Ogres, and that if it hadn't been liberated by the FTC, it would have been turned into Market Burgers.
  • The "Free Market" =DID= decide. It told the FTC that it was the watchdog, and should bloody well watch!


Bitching aside, this decision is a Good Thing. It forces people who deliberately break something to think again. This might not be terribly popular, but who cares. This decision will do more to stop terrorism on the Internet than all the marketroid sponsored carp ever will. It will genuinely have a positive impact on how the Internet is seen and used. And that may be the best thing that has happened in a VERY long time.

FCC going about it the wrong way? (1)

compugeek007 (464717) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375540)

My feelings are mixed on this one. I don't like the FCC monitoring web sites like this - what is next? Banner Ads? Non-trapping pop ups? As much as I hate the infinite windows, what if (although far-fetched) there were "trapping" ads for the Boy Scouts, or some Christen group? Would the FCC REALLY care about this? My worries are this precedent may be used further down the line to censor web content in some way.

IMO the FCC should make a standard for browsers (read Internet Exploder) to not allow this function to operate on their browsers. This may also serve the double purpose by limiting the security holes Microsoft can put on your machine through unneeded bells and whistles on IE.

--cgeek--

kweh? (0, Redundant)

gunner800 (142959) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375541)

While some sites are still operating, the FCC is going to take this matter to court, which may decide exactly how much control a web site can take over the end browser using JavaScript and ActiveX.


Isn't the more pressing question exactly how much control the FCC can take over a private / corporate web site?

Can't do it. Free Speech. Won't hold up. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375543)

Sorry. Unconstitutional. Americans win again.

so... (-1, Troll)

davey23sol (462701) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375545)

who is going to send the FTC a tip about Goatse.cx??

(Weren't they the guys that put up the link that opened up 20k windows that breaks the OS??)

I'm happy, but... (5, Insightful)

DaSyonic (238637) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375546)

I can't say this is good. Noone likes those popup ads that lock you in, and do other unethical things. However, I dont think it's good for the government, or anyone, to say it's illegal/disallowed.

Namely, You are connecting to THEIR machine.
Mail server administrators block spam because they are using their resources, why can't these people claim the same? After all, you're using THEIR resources, shouldnt they have the right to send any data on a connection that YOU initiated? (Though I realize you might not have intentionally made that connection; they can be sneaky, but the point remains.)

I just don't like regulation, If it's bad and wrong, it's the clients job to work with the received data. But noone's blaming Microsoft, Netscape, Mozilla, or Konq (and you really can't blame the last 2, they're implementing things to take care of this junk).

Target a solution, rather than the cause and punishment.
That's just my view.

Re:I'm happy, but... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375608)

Nah, this is like false advertiseing, or violation of trademark, on a massive scale. The FBI isn't going after just popup sites, or just typo sites, but sites that can effectively damage the reputation of the sites they 'copy'. And try to make money off it at the same time. We are not sacrificing any freedom here, this is just about getting an a$$hole off the net.

FTC has changed it's name (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375552)

the FTC is now known as the Free Trade Commision

Ashcroft's take? (3, Offtopic)

Sorklin (88002) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375555)

I wonder if this would be considered as terrorism in Ashcroft's proposed law?

mozilla.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375557)

I made this suggestion here before in discussions on mozilla, and this looks like a good place to do it again....

In Mozilla, why not have policy files dictating what JavaScript and other scripting languages are permitted to do on what pages? For example, ESPN.com and CNN.com use JavaScript ethically and correctly. But other sites abuse JavaScript (like those this Zaccurini owns and the X10 camera ads). Have some kind of policytool configure the browser to say that ESPN and other legit sites allow javascript while others dont. Or allow only some types of javascript to work on a page and block the rest.

Implement such a tool in mozilla because its open source and we oss people have that kind of power.

Why more government involvment? (1)

cyb3r0ptx (106843) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375560)

I agree that these sites are annoying and have no good purpose, but is government involvement really the answer?

Re:Why more government involvment? (1)

WildBeast (189336) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375598)

I agree with your agreement. I don't like it but I don't want government intervention. I can take care of myself, government should stop telling people what to do.

Re:Why more government involvment? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375633)

agreed. less government! go find some terrorists and leave the rest of us alone.

Netscape does it too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375582)

Netscape does it similarly with a re-direct if you hit the 'search' or 'Netscape' buttons in Netscape.

Crappy ASS broken slashcode (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375583)

Slashdot sucks major ass. This fucking code is ridiculous. Why must it always be broken? Always booting me to the front page...

Of course THIS works...

Slashdot requires you to wait 20 seconds between hitting 'reply' and submitting a comment.

It's been 19 seconds since you hit 'reply'!

If you this error seems to be incorrect, please provide the following in your report to Source Forge:

Browser type
User ID/Nickname or AC
What steps caused this error
Whether or not you know your ISP to be using a proxy or some sort of service that gives you an IP that others are using simultaneously.
How many posts to this form you successfully submitted during the day
* Please choose 'formkeys' for the category!
Thank you.

Net Darwinism (1)

Uttles (324447) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375585)

Is this really so bad? You have to a) run IE, b) have javascript security at it's lowest, and c) type in an incorrect URL in order for this "trap" to work... do we really want these people running around on the net anyway?

(humor)

Fark Scoops Slashdot? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375588)

http://www.fark.com/cgi/fark/comments.pl?IDLink=52 186

As long as they allow scripting... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375594)

So people use scripting for imaginative ways that nobody had expected. Then people start complaining. Hello!!!! New and unexpected uses are what scripting are all about. To be programmable means that things will be asked that you hadn't anticipated. (Otherwise, there is no need to program them.) Therefore you have to expect abuses when you introduce such a technology. Scripting engines do not belong in browsers, mail clients, news clients, and so on. It was plain irresponsibility for Microsoft, Netscape, and the others to do this to their products. Years ago I saw the coming security nightmare that we live in today. It arose from the "browser wars" between IE and Netscape. This functionality wasn't about making websites better, it was about trying to have a gimmick feature that the other didn't have. This gold-plating not only lead to shoddy implementations, but bloated browsers, bloated websites, and immeasureable amounts of wasted bandwidth.

Now that Netscape is dead, the problems unfortunately remain. Browsers shouldn't have scripting embedded in them, period. If you like scripting, then you have to expect and put up with this crap. There's no way to legislate people to stop doing things like this.

The only way to stop them is to disable scripting on your browser. The more flexibility a program has, the less secure it is. Scripting adds almost no value to websites, and is now just a tool of marketers, used more against you than for you. They track you with it. They take over your web experience with it. They keep tabs on what you're doing... and sometimes even take over your machine when flaws are discovered and exploited. I have serious problems with other people running their code on my machine, and therefore disable all scripting.

Consequantly, I don't every seem to have any problems with pop-up windows, pop-under windows, "trapped" browsers, infinite-loop "back" buttons, etc.

Turn off scripting. Encourage websites to stop using it. The web is full of more than enough bloated crap already. While you're at it, get rid of flash, and all the rest of the plugins.

This might slow the push for filtering? (3, Interesting)

ClarkEvans (102211) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375600)

My aunt is furious about when her 6 year old child accidently does a typo and porn sites pop up everywhere. Perhaps if this stops, it will lessen the demand for filtering software. Filtering software, IMHO, is very bad; definately the worse of two evils. At least shutting down a web site could possibly have a court process attached to it...

I'm mixed (0)

vulgarDPS (525551) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375604)

I like the idea of being able to surf porn without fjear of locking up the shitty windows machine they make me use at work to connect to the exchange server. But where will the line be drawn when this hits congress. And if a bill is passed this will enforce the idea that they can control or mandate something they really know nothing about. Frankly I would rather keep the government out of it and have pop-up windows that screw me over. This seems like something small and good they can do but in the long run I think it'll hurt us.

And this makes money? (2, Interesting)

bigdavex (155746) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375605)

I find it pretty amazing that some people, after having their browser assaulted with annoying pop-ups, go on to actually buy things from these merchants. I guess spammers and phone salesman make money too, but I find this equally strange. I would hope this sort of thing would fix itself through consumer pressure.

Someone's got to raise the question... (0)

Millennium (2451) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375609)

Does this make mallinking to goatse.cx a crime? Might be something for all those trolls to think about before trying that again...

good! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375617)

i wish they would shutdown any sites than modify the browser functions without the user's permission.

if they want to make the back button open popups, fine, but they should be required to warn the user. "Entering this site will make you're back button open 50 of our popup banners. Continue? [Yes] [No]."

evil intrusive code. (1)

motherhead (344331) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375618)

I for one couldn't be more delighted. Having to ditch the browser because you stumbled into a shitty web porn glue trap is about as intrusive and evil as code gets without being viral.

hmmm... then again i wonder how all this bodes for microsoft... Smart Links indeed...

It's about time... (1)

huckda (398277) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375622)

This as well as the 'close' pop-up crap should finally be banned...
as for the FCC dictating standards and then trying to uphold them as far as Browsers are concerned and the 'control' factors...

I'm not sure which I'm more comfortable with...

alt-f4

or more Federal Control

Exterminate All Arabs. Destroy Islam. Kill Muslims (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2375623)

The dead's horrific screams cry out or vengeance:
  1. Kill all Muslims.
  2. Kill all Mohammedans.
  3. Kill all Arabs.
  4. Kill all Towel Heads.
  5. Kill all Camel Jockeys.
  6. Kill all Dune Coons.
  7. Kill all Islam.
  8. Nuke their countries to hell.
  9. Nuke them again.
  10. Death to Islam.

I piss on Mecca. I wipe my ass with the Koran. I spit upon Mohammed.

The FTC regulates trade (5, Informative)

tester13 (186772) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375628)

This is a great thing. The FTC protects people from fraud and other illegal business practices. That is what they are doing in this instance. The FCC regulates the airwaves, television, and so forth.

The government isn't "getting involved in the internet" in any new creative way. They are just protecting consumers (us) from fraudulent illegal business practices

Next time get the FCC FTC thing correct before you post, it completely changes the context of the article.

disabling intrusive scripts (2)

corvi42 (235814) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375635)

I can get a warning when I enter or leave an ssl session if I want it.

I can get a warning when I accept cookies if I want it.

I can even get a warning when I submit a form if I want it.

All of these are fairly trivial run-of-the-mill type web actions, but something as annoying & intrusive as creating pop-ups and altering my browsers history list cannot be disabled. When oh when are we going to see the ability to disable pop-ups & other intrusive/obnoxious script actions like this?

unauthorised javascript (5, Informative)

rpeppe (198035) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375642)

this issue is interesting: a colleague at work was today
looking for a bug in some Javascript (we maintain
our own web browser), and after delving down
through the deliberately obfuscated javascript
code, it became obvious what it was trying to do:


it went through all links in the document, attaching
a javascript "front-end" to each link that did an http GET request
informing the remote site what had been clicked on,
before actually following the link. the technique
used seemed fairly dodgy (the request was purporting
to be for a non-displayed image), but it's interesting
to see what a fairly reputable site is prepared
to do in order to get as much information off you as possible (without your knowledge).


how reasonable is that? i don't like it, but is that sort
of subterfuge the kind of thing we'd like to stop too?


[PS. apologies if this appears twice - it looked like /.
had rejected the previous ones; and then the whole
server seemed to crash: what was going on there then?]

From the article.... (1)

carlos_benj (140796) | more than 12 years ago | (#2375645)

Zuccarini did not immediately respond to calls for comment.

Heck no! He's too busy trying to shut down 5,500 sites......
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