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Yahoo Mail Forcing Ads Through Adblock?

Cliff posted more than 7 years ago | from the isn't-javascript-wonderful dept.

Yahoo! 291

egNuKe asks: "Like some people here, I use Firefox and Adblock. I've blocked the ads that Yahoo puts in my inbox, however the next time I opened it, I've found other ads, and blocked them too. This happened for several times, until I figured out that Yahoo must have some script that checks if the ad is displayed and displays another one, if it hasn't. This is no big problem, I just needed to add several rules to Adblock to block the several ad sources they use. Here is the problem: when Adblock is running and effectively stopping Yahoo mail ads, Firefox would freeze (all open windows and tabs) for about 15 seconds. Then the page opens and there is no ads. The script must be on client side, since it's the browser that's freezing and not the network. Turning off Adblock solves the freezing problem. Is there a cure for this?" This is a touch-and-go issue as it basically boils down to the user's priority (not seeing ads) versus the services priority (displaying the ads it needs to allow the user to enjoy a free service). It was only a matter of time before someone thought to try and work around ad-blockers, and all this will eventually lead to is open warfare (competing Javascript or browser code in the browser) on your machine. Instead of working around the workaround, why not consider another service that doesn't inundate you with ads?

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291 comments

Gmail (5, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582410)

I can send you a gmail invite. that'll fix it.

Re:Gmail (3, Insightful)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582610)

An advantage of using Gmail is you don't send out emails offering the chance to win tickets for last years World Cup in your sigfile. (Yes, I told Yahoo about this; No, I didn't get a reply). I see no point in using a Yahoo account when Gmail offers much more whilst still being free.

Re:Gmail (5, Funny)

dthable (163749) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584430)

But Apple says Yahoo mail is the best and they even included it on their new phone. Everyone knows Jobs wouldn't lead us astray.

related issue (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582430)

My friend has this myspace page, and when I visit it in MSN Explorer, it freezes (I am using a Motorola modem). I read somewhere that Microsoft teamed up with CIA to block myspace.

Since Slashdot now offers free tech support, is anyone technically competent to explain this?

GReasemonkey (5, Informative)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582448)

You could run a greasemonkey script to remove the script causing all this.

Re:GReasemonkey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582486)

one might also try adblock + noscript, or perhaps all three in concert.

Re:GReasemonkey (1)

Jherek Carnelian (831679) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582932)

one might also try adblock + noscript, or perhaps all three in concert.

GreaseMonkey and NoScript do not cooperate. I wish they did since I love NoScript and want to get some good greasy love too. But alas, they don't and apparently can't since GreaseMonkey's context is the site itself, so you can't block the scripts at a site and simultaneously grease it up.

Re:GReasemonkey (4, Informative)

Arker (91948) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584356)

I am using just noscript. Blocking scripts from yimg.com gets rid of the ads with no freeze-ups. It also, if memory serves, interfered with some function somewhere in mail, although the basics still seem to work. I normally let their ads run, as they aren't very intrusive. Then again I also use gmail for almost everything, and rarely login on yahoo anymore.

Opera (5, Informative)

TheDawgLives (546565) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582498)

One trick that worked in Opera was to find out which javascript function was creating the adds and overwrite it. Opera allows you to define a user.js file and any functions in it overwrite the functions in any page loaded javascript. I just created a function with an empty body and I was good to go.

Re:Opera (1)

badenglishihave (944178) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583304)

That's incredible, good thinking if you figured that out yourself. Any other useful scripting tips for blocking unwanted junk?

View the ads or find another webmail (4, Insightful)

jfclavette (961511) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582508)

If I had a website relying on ads and a reliable way to do it, I'd terminate accounts of people with an ad blocker right off the bat. You are using a free service in exchange of which they are putting a bunch of advertisement on your screen. By blocking it, you become a free loader, absolutely useless for them as a customer. If you don't like the business model, pay for your webmail.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (4, Insightful)

Raindance (680694) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582664)

If I had a website relying on ads and a reliable way to do it, I'd terminate accounts of people with an ad blocker right off the bat. You are using a free service in exchange of which they are putting a bunch of advertisement on your screen. By blocking it, you become a free loader, absolutely useless for them as a customer. If you don't like the business model, pay for your webmail.

I would disagree for two reasons:

1. That's not true that adblockers are complete freeloaders on the Yahoo network. Attached to every mail you send from Yahoo is an advertisement for Yahoo Mail. That's presumably worth something- very possibly more than the ads you're blocking (especially as the type of customer who blocks ads is not likely to click on them).

2. Yahoo simply can't do this. People would scream bloody murder if their email- their online identity- was terminated. Bad, bad publicity and a quick erosion of trust for very little gain.

Personally? I'd switch to gmail. They've never pulled any shenanigans on me.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (2, Informative)

Zwaxy (447665) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583142)

You can use POP3 with gmail, and then you don't see any ads at all. I don't know if Yahoo supports POP3 or not, but even if it does I guess they still tag an ad on the end of each mail you send.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (4, Interesting)

L7_ (645377) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583598)

when you download your gmail to a pop3 reader, do you get the other stuff in the column that comes with the ads? Like the auto-parsing of any addresses in your email with a link to thier site on maps.google.com, auto-parsing what it sees as DHL, FedEx or UPS tracking numbers with a link to those web tracking services, or parses any dates and descriptions and links directly to adding them to your google calendar, or even better yet linking news site articles that have content that actually is relevant to the discussion?

Thats what gmail does for me, and why I use the web interface.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (2, Insightful)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584168)

That's the secret. Make it better enough and the ads subtle enough and you can rake in the bucks. Give 'em flash and blink and noise and get blocked.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (2, Informative)

Zwaxy (447665) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584926)

I used to use the web interface. It really is a joy to use. Then one day about 6 months ago I found I couldn't log in. It's almost impossible to get any useful information from Google when you experience a problem. For over 2 weeks I couldn't access any of my old email at all. Then as if by magic it started working again.

That was when I stopped trusting 3rd parties to hold my information for me. Now I use POP3. The interface might not be so pretty, but at least I know I can access my mail when I want to.

Of course, I could use the web interface for reading and composing mail and use POP3 just for backing it up to local storage.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (4, Insightful)

Arker (91948) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584422)

Yahoo decided awhile back to remove POP access from free accounts. You now have to pay them for that access. While gmail gives it to you for free, then makes the web interface useful to you so you won't want to...

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (2, Interesting)

nra1871 (836627) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583170)

I personally like Gmail's ads. They add a lot of humor when having a back and forth discussion, coming up with stuff that is completely inappropriate. Often we have more fun discussing why Gmail decides we need to see "The secret coffee cos don't want you to know" more than the actual topic.

Adsense ads more useful and relevant than banners (1)

MaineCoon (12585) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583538)

I've actually found gmails ads' sometimes useful too. I GM a roleplaying game with virtual tabletop software, and some interesting things I had never heard about, but am interested in, show up in the sponsored links section.

Google's adsense is far more useful to users than regular banner ads.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (1)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583672)

Years ago - when I signed up it was "free e-mail for life" - nothing was mentioned about being forced to view ads.

Maybe they should of been more clear with their business model back then.

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (1)

Phillup (317168) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584030)

Years ago - when I signed up it was "free e-mail for life" - nothing was mentioned about being forced to view ads
Maybe if you used the same email client today as you did back then... you would not see the ads.

;-)

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (1)

Myen (734499) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584048)

But that doesn't actually give you revenue, it just reduces expenses.

Instead, just forward the user to a page explaining that ad blocking is not supported and link to instructions on whitelisting the ads in yahoo. Then the user at least knows how to fix it, and has the choice of sticking with you...

Re:View the ads or find another webmail (1)

stevesliva (648202) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584788)

You are using a free service in exchange of which they are putting a bunch of advertisement on your screen. By blocking it, you become a free loader, absolutely useless for them as a customer. If you don't like the business model, pay for your webmail.
How is hiding the ads any different from not clicking on them?

I just don't understand some of you (3, Insightful)

GweeDo (127172) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582524)

I personally do have Adblock installed on my machine here, but I only use turn it on for sites that uses ads in a way that are obtrusive. Think of those lovely sites that uses flash to overlay ads that you have to figure out how to get rid of. Those sites, sure. But think of something like /. here. The ads don't get in the way. But they also let the service continue to be free for me. I won't block /. ads unless they start doing something to get them in my way.

Now, there is a somewhat person reason for this for me too. I am starting up a new gaming company that will depend on ad revenue on the site to survive. If people block it, we will die off. We won't ever put ads in the way, but some people just can't stand to let us make money for a free service to happen.

I just don't understand some of you.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (4, Insightful)

Kelson (129150) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582686)

I won't block /. ads unless they start doing something to get them in my way.

Agreed there. If an ad interferes with reading the site, or blares audio without asking me, I'll block it. I remember one site that had a pair of interesting articles (about website usability, ironically enough) that had so many ads it was almost impossible to read. I blocked all the ads, read the two articles, then never returned to the site.

With most of them, it's just as easy to tune them out.

Oddly, the only ads I can recall clicking on in the last year or so are on a handful of webcomics that I read. I wonder if that says something...

Re:I just don't understand some of you (2, Informative)

novus ordo (843883) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583016)

Adblock Plus has a whitelist so you can support the sites you like while blocking all others.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (1)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583062)

I started blocking here when they had these super-annoying IBM ads. I can't remember exactly but they either crept into the content or flashed or something. Oh yeah, and they munged firefox margins and made the page display all narrow. I dealt with it for a week. No more ads for slashdot. I'm with you, but if I get to my increasingly low annoyance threshold the site gets no more ads.

All ads are obtrusive. (0, Troll)

Virak (897071) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583072)

The whole point of advertising is to scream "OOH! OOH! BUY ME!" louder than the other guy. I don't buy stuff on a whim without any sort of information about it, and I certainly don't trust companies to offer unbiased information on their own products; hence, ads are only a waste of money for them (at least when I view them) and an annoyance for me.

This may seem crazy, but if they want me to buy their product or service, maybe they should spend less money shoving it in my face and more money making it better than the alternatives.

We won't ever put ads in the way, but some people just can't stand to let us make money for a free service to happen.
Yes, because everyone blocking ads is just doing it to prevent you from making money.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (1, Insightful)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583300)

I personally do have Adblock installed on my machine here, but I only use turn it on for sites that uses ads in a way that are obtrusive

The only ads that are not obtrusive are text-based. Google got it right smack in the center of the bullseye with that one.

Banner ads suck. (Animated banner ads, of course, go far beyond sucking, and the just damnation that awaits those who use them is terrible to contemplate.) Simple text links that tell me, "this message brought to you by EarthTouch Shiatsu [earthtouchshiatsu.com] and Catonsville Seido Karate [seidomd.com]" don't bother me at all and are occasionally (very occasionally) even useful.

I am starting up a new gaming company that will depend on ad revenue on the site to survive.

Then I suggest you take Google's hint.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (5, Interesting)

fotbr (855184) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583486)

I don't buy based on ads. I don't do research based on ads. Why should I waste my bandwidth, AND YOURS, loading ads that are not going to result in a sale, or even a click for that matter? Bandwidth costs money. You should be thanking me for blocking ads and saving your business money, since there was no possibility of me clicking on the ad anyway.

And yes, I even block google ads, even though they are the least annoying. I still won't click them, so why bother with them in the first place?

Re:I just don't understand some of you (2, Informative)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584254)

The "reasoning" these ad-people use is that ads you are forced to watch, against your will, will somehow corrupt your free will. That your unconscious mind will be screaming "Ford! Coke! Gap! Etc!" every time you try to think clearly about making a purchase. Maybe it's even true. I find myself wanting to punch the monkey from time to time, and a free iPod seems compelling to me. I haven't seen an internet ad in a long time, either!

So, don't waste your time trying to be reasonable. It's all some kind of marketing voodoo that isn't bound by logic.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (1)

Russellkhan (570824) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583850)

I just don't understand some of you.

To help you understand perhaps a bit more of the ad-blocking mindset, another reason for blocking ads that you didn't mention so might not be aware of is that the major web advertising companies set themselves up to track users movements across the internet. I personally have no desire to give Doubleclick any information about what sites I surf. Even Google, whose ads are less intrusive, gets their ads/scripts blocked since I don't really care to give them that much insight into my browsing patterns.

That said, I don't block all ads. If a site has ads that don't flash at me (and since I use noscript and I turn off gif animations, pretty much none of them do flash at me) and that seem to be hosted on the same site that I'm surfing, I just leave them be.

Re:I just don't understand some of you (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17583870)

Now, there is a somewhat person reason for this for me too. I am starting up a new gaming company that will depend on ad revenue on the site to survive. If people block it, we will die off. We won't ever put ads in the way, but some people just can't stand to let us make money for a free service to happen.

I just don't understand some of you.


Let me try to help you understand. First, consider that not everybody blocks ads. If you run a site that depends on
ad revenue, you will have some people downloading and viewing your ads, but you must accept that not everyone will.
Some of us really dislike ads, and some of us even believe that the web is a one-to-many publishing medium that exists
for people to express themselves with, not for people to try to make a go of business ventures that are so pathetic that
the only way they can survive is if everybody that visits their site views their ads.

Second, the way that some sites display ads is simply unacceptable. When I point my web browser at www.domain.com,
I am expressly downloading content from www.domain.com, and from nowhere else. If that site attempts to trick my
browser into requesting files from any other domain, it is pissing in the wind. I guarantee this behaviour with
any browser I use via a custom proxy, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Keep that in mind if you want to
embed ads in your pages. You had better plan on managing those ads yourself, because some people's browsers are
not going to fetch them from anywhere else.

Finally, you need to come to grips with the fact that some people believe that the web would instantly become a
better place if all sites that depended on ad revenue vanished. Granted, a lot of useful and popular sites would
disappear, but I assure you that equally useful sites would fill their places. There were excellent free search
engines before google, and there would be again.

If you cannot survive with web surfers exercising their ability and right to control what HTTP requests they do and
do not make, then kindly release your domain name as you die.

Don't you mr jones? (1)

crabpeople (720852) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584120)

"I just don't understand some of you"

We dont care if, or are in any way responsible for, your site making money? Is it really that hard to grasp?

Advertising is garbage for the brain and causes therapy. It is responsible for over consumption, driving consumerism and the general unhappyness of the masses. Advertising is a psychological disease that gradually and continually perverts, manipulates and conditions society. It creates an epedemic of distrust. You will have no idea of the effect advertising has on your life untill you rid yourself of it.

I think we're stuck with it (0)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582530)

I have this problem with Hotmail as well. Google's ads are far less noticable, but far more creepy. Google is obviously reading my mail, as there's no possible way they could so consistently offer products directly related to what I'm writing about. But I think we're pretty much stuck with them like radio and TV telethons before them, as long as we want something for nothing.

Re:I think we're stuck with it (1)

orkysoft (93727) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582908)

Google ads are not creepy. It's not like a person is reading your mail, it's just a computer program that finds words in the mail that advertisers think are interesting, and then, based on those words, selects ads to display.

Now take Slashdot, that's creepy. Your posts are actually read by real people, who post replies to it that (usually) are eerily on-topic!

Re:I think we're stuck with it (1)

Dr. Eggman (932300) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583196)

The fundamental creepy feeling stems not from the fact that someone or something is watching you, its that they may do something. There's not a whole lot stopping Google or the Government to interrupt the analysis-ad chain and turn it into data mining operation designed to monitor users. I will say that I trust Google more than Hotmail...and much more than the average /.er *shifty eyes*

Re:I think we're stuck with it (1)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583588)

Does it disturb you that the Gmail system is reading your mail, citizen? You have nothing to fear! Google is your friend. You love the Google and the Google loves you.

Now in a few moments your doorbell will ring. Do not be alarmed. The system merely wishes you to understand the benefits that Google offers. The nice people will not take much of your time. You love the Google, and the Google loves you

Re:I think we're stuck with it (1)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583198)

Google's ads are far less noticable, but far more creepy. Google is obviously reading my mail, as there's no possible way they could so consistently offer products directly related to what I'm writing about./blockquote Well, yeah, this is pretty well-known. I still have a screenshot of ads for divorce lawyers next to a nasty conversation with an ex-girlfriend. I was quite amused, and impressed. But I don't see why you think this is "creepy". Google's not sending your emails to advertisers, and Google employees are not actually reading your mail. Unless you click the ads, nobody has any more information about you than they would have if Google didn't do any analysis.

Let's try that again (1)

Nasarius (593729) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583236)

I really should use that preview button...
Google's ads are far less noticable, but far more creepy. Google is obviously reading my mail, as there's no possible way they could so consistently offer products directly related to what I'm writing about.
Well, yeah, this is pretty well-known. I still have a screenshot of ads for divorce lawyers next to a nasty conversation with an ex-girlfriend. I was quite amused, and impressed. But I don't see why you think this is "creepy". Google's not sending your emails to advertisers, and Google employees are not actually reading your mail. Unless you click the ads, nobody has any more information about you than they would have if Google didn't do any analysis.

Are you perhaps blond ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17584972)

"Unless you click the ads, nobody has any more information about you than they would have if Google didn't do any analysis"

So ? Why is Google than doing that analysis ?

Or do you mean that now Google too has information about you that other persons/coorporations allready have is not bad ?

Like if wronging two persons is not worse as wronging just one ?

Re:I think we're stuck with it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17583294)

as there's no possible way they could so consistently offer products directly related to what I'm writing about.

They're matching text, so it looks sort of relevant, but not really: mail about preparing Project Gutenberg etexts gets served up with ads about where I can *buy* ebooks.. and other stuff is even further off the beam.

Re:I think we're stuck with it (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583310)

> Google's ads are far less noticable, but far more creepy

More creepy than having your typing checked for evidence of spam? They can't understand you, you know. They're just computers.

Yahoo reads your email too (1)

Marcion (876801) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583360)

I used to use Yahoo mail, I'm sure they do something similar. I set up a Yahoo account in England with an English Address and everything. I did not tell Yahoo about any other languages. However, I do use (attempt) to use another language that I am learning, and I got ads in that language for no reason that I could see except for that they parsing the mail.

Google read my email too, but at least they are not fowarding my inbox to the Chinese government ala Yahoo!

Haven't noticed, myself (2, Interesting)

markbt73 (1032962) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582552)

I use Firefox with AdBlock and haven't seen an ad on Yahoo Mail in ages. But I haven't switched to their new layout, either. Maybe that makes a difference (and if so, I'll never switch).

Re:Haven't noticed, myself (1)

dc29A (636871) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582630)

I've been using their new layout, no adverts whatsoever. AdBlock with a good regex filter is awesome.

Dear Slashdot, (4, Insightful)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582560)

I signed up for a service that is paid for by displaying advertisments.
I am trying to avoid my side of the bargin by blocking the ads, however, the service provider seems to have prevented me from doing this easily.
Can anyone help?

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

thrillseeker (518224) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582818)

Dear Mysterious X,
In spite of what you were told, attempts to sell yourself into slavery are considered invalid - enjoy the free room and board, but it's not the Hotel California - you can indeed leave anytime you want - and you don't have to view the ads while you're there.
Your pal in non-slavedom,
Abby

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582966)

OK, the two who modded me troll need to look up sarcasm and irony :)

I don't like ads any more than the next guy, but, if you sign up to a service like yahoo mail, and agree to view ads in exchange for recieving a service, then you should view them.

(Almost) everything these days has a cost, and the adverts are there to pay part (or all) of that cost.

To then complain that the service provider is making it difficult for you to break your side of the contract (for that's what it is, a contract), is beyond audacious.

To use a bad analogy, it's like the guy trying to break into your car knocking on your front door and asking if he can borrow the keys, cause hotwiring the car is too difficult for him. (Bad analogy, because he is asking a third party for help, but it illustrates my point).

If someone is forcing ads down your throat, then fine block them (I do). But if you agree to them, in exchange for something else, just accept them. It's not even as if the ones on yahoo mail are particularly obtrusive (and if it's the privacy side you are worried about, why the hell are you storing your email with a third party anyway?)

Re:Dear Slashdot, (3, Insightful)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583288)

You are painfully loyal to these corporations. They can change the terms of service at any time. They won't hesitate to make the service more annoying and profitable if the mood strikes.

I don't use Yahoo, but the way I've seen it work at other places is like this:
1. Offer useful, non-annoying service
2. Become successful
3. Make service annoying
4. Poor deluded users are stuck with it, or they can change providers (which often sucks or is simply impossible)

I had an account with mail.com many years ago. They had good webmail and lots of neat-o domain names. Slowly they started sucking until now it makes me want to die using their site on IE. Blinding, flashing, musical, interstitial, repetitous hell. That wasn't the deal. They changed the rules. They get blocked.

Yahoo did the same exact thing, I can guarantee it. They got wise to the getting blocked part, and now they're trying to ruin that too. Fuck 'em. I finally moved away from my mail.com account. I got tired of having to whip up a greasemonkey script every few weeks to deal with their latest retardation. It sucked. I've had that email for 10 years or so. I'll probably lose some important stuff in the future such as forgotten registrations, long-lost friends, etc.

We don't owe these bastards anything. If they can change the rules so can we. Eventually some honest company will come along with a sustainable business model instead of this bait-and-switch bullshit. I'm so sick of having something useful and good grow ad-fucked time after time.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583546)

I agree with your order, but not with the reasoning.

Right now, I could set up a webmail service, completely for free, that doesn't suck, with no ads.
I doubt I could afford to keep it going on my own for more than a month though.

Sooner or later, I would have to find some source of funding. One choice is to charge for it. For people who value the principles of open source software and the like, this is not a disireable option. So I have to find another way to support it.

Ads are an easy way to do this.

Eventually, it's likely that the service will be bought out by some faceless/greedy corporation that will start shenanigans.

As for the sustainable business model... You could become a very rich man/woman/neuter if you can create one that requires on selling of ads, no subscriptions, and still breaks even (or even turns a profit).

And you're right about voting with your feet. If you disagree with the TOS of a service, choose another. Though I think at this time you'd be hard pressed to find one which promises what we'd all like. Free Forver.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583700)

I like gmail. They make money faster than they can count it, and their ads don't make me crazy. I'm wary since I've been burnt so many times, but it is possible things will never go to hell since they're making money.

A small sig with a text ad is acceptable. Simple text ads are OK. Once you go to hideous flash or animated banners, you've crossed the line.

I think it's pretty easy to come up with reasonable models. Google has made billions offering non-terrible ads. I don't know why anyone does it the stupid way anymore.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

ichigo 2.0 (900288) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584180)

Sooner or later, I would have to find some source of funding. One choice is to charge for it. For people who value the principles of open source software and the like, this is not a disireable option.

What do principles of open-source software have to do with charging money for a service? Isn't that in fact the very core of most open-source businesses? While I consider myself somewhat of a open-source proponent, I have to admit I really don't see a problem with someone charging for a service. In your example I would not be paying for software, but in fact for bandwidth, hardware, maintenance etc.

Ads I hate however, and have no qualms about blocking all of them.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584306)

This particular paragraph from the GPL sums up what I mean nicely:

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the
GNU General Public License for more details.

(Not that I praticularly like the GPL, I usually release stuff under the BSD licence.)

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

ichigo 2.0 (900288) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584418)

Because OSS has no warranty, you think charging for service is against the spirit of OSS? I'm not sure I understand your logic. Do you mean that you feel it's not right to charge for a service based on software without warranty? AFAIK commercial software also comes without warranty..

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584496)

No, that it is provided in the hope that it may be useful, and that for one who hopes that someone may find something that I provide useful, a subscription model doesn't fit.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (2, Insightful)

Russellkhan (570824) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584258)

Sooner or later, I would have to find some source of funding. One choice is to charge for it. For people who value the principles of open source software and the like, this is not a disireable option. So I have to find another way to support it.

Ads are an easy way to do this.


If I'm understanding you correctly, I disagree with your idea of "the principles of open source". I think that charging for a service is much more in line with open source principles than supporting it with the use of ads.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583382)

If someone is forcing ads down your throat, then fine block them (I do). But if you agree to them, in exchange for something else, just accept them.

I've never made, nor even seen, any agreement about viewing ads in return for service. What site has this in their service agreement? Does it specify how long you have look at each one or something?

Re:Dear Slashdot, (5, Informative)

The Mysterious X (903554) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583434)

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

LordSnooty (853791) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584036)

"You also understand and agree that the Service may include advertisements and that these advertisements are necessary for Yahoo! to provide the Service."
Nowhere do I see the words "you agree to sit there and take in the advertising message" or even "you must download the bits representing the ads". Yes they're necessary, but it's not necessary for me to view them. This silly stuff is unenforceable.

Re:Dear Slashdot, (1)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582896)

*sigh* that's not a troll, mods. That's paraphrasing the original blurb.

The submitter really is griping because Yahoo is taking measures to make sure that their ads (the only source of revenue to support their free mail, at that) are getting displayed. And the complaint that when all the ads are being blocked, the page will start loading, freeze for 15s, and then finish loading? That's probably JavaScript, or whatever they're using to make sure the ads are displayed, running through its myriad adservers for the maximum execution time.

Get your own domain and/or an aliasing service (2)

Kris_J (10111) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582562)

The first thing you need to do, more or less straight away, is find a way to separate your email address from the place your email comes to rest. I have a domain AND an account with Spamgourmet [spamgourmet.com]. One is for fighting spam, but both are so I can hand out addresses that are independant from whatever service I choose to use to actually receive my mail. This allows you to easily leave crappy places that force ads on you or otherwise stuff up your mail. Start advertising your new address now, so that in a year or so when Yahoo pulls some new crap that pisses you off, you have the option of leaving them without any of your friends noticing. I also recommend setting up a bunch of IM accounts, then using an ad-free all-in-one IM client like Miranda IM [miranda-im.org] and move away from email in general.

Why not allow it (5, Informative)

vga_init (589198) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582568)

I hate ads just as much as anyone else. I certainly hate being subject to "driveby" ads where you happen to visit a web page once in your life for no important reason (ie check out a story linked to by Slashdot), and I would stop at nothing to block those bastards. Yahoo, however, is offering you a pretty valuable service (free web mail), and I assume you enjoy the benefits of having it, so why not let them have their ads? Quid pro quo is not too unfair in this case.

If you really want to get the ads off of your Yahoo mail account, pay them. I have a premium account with Yahoo because my ISP partners with them to provide all the web services. I log in--no ads! It's not too shabby.

Re:Why not allow it (2, Funny)

Achromatic1978 (916097) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583756)

Pay? For an internet service? What are you, some kind of capitalist? Subsidize the cost of it being free? What are you, some kind of capitalist?

Yes those servers are free, damnit. Who pays for bandwidth and development time, these days, anyway. Get out of the past.

;)

Adblock or AdblockPlus? (1)

Protonk (599901) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582646)

There is a big difference, as certain rules in Adblock will cause it to freeze or load pages slowly. Adblock plus works a little faster, but has the downside of not being as well coupled with filterset.G. Try switching to AdblockPlus and see if that does anything.

Or....just get gmail?

Re:Adblock or AdblockPlus? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582944)

Filterset.G is now old and busted. Yes, it was a great starting point and Adblock (and adblock plus) owes a lot of it's success to it.

But now it's very old, very outdated. If you're still using it, you're still in the dark ages.

Re:Adblock or AdblockPlus? (1)

Marcion (876801) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583430)

>Filterset.G is now old and busted. Yes, it was a great starting point and Adblock (and adblock plus) owes a lot of it's success to it. But now it's very old, very outdated.

Very is a big word for something that has only been around a few years at most. So what is wrong with Filterset.G? What are these modern alternatives?

>If you're still using it, you're still in the dark ages.

Note that technologies on the whole do not become obsolete, just complemented. I have a computer but that does not mean that I will not own a pen too.

Filterset.G suckage explained (5, Informative)

pestie (141370) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584078)

I used to run Adblock with Filterset.G, but I had a number of problems with this setup:
  • Filterset.G didn't include some rules for major sites, like MySpace.
  • Because of that, I added many of my own blocking rules, which promptly got overwritten every time Filterset.G updated.
  • The guy who created Filterset.G is an egotistical whiner who didn't like his "hard work" being copied without attribution, so he became a prick about his "licensing terms." This has nothing to do with how well Filterset.G works, but annoys me personally.

So I switched to Adblock Plus, which:
  • Allows me to subscribe to a non-Filterset.G rule set, which seems to work a whole lot more effectively than Filterset.G ever did.
  • Allows me to block DOM elements as well as the usual URL patterns, which is incredibly useful for blocking ads on certain sites.
  • Allows me to create my own rules that aren't overwritten when the subscribed rule list updates.

Adblock Plus rocks. There's just no comparison.

Re:Adblock or AdblockPlus? (1)

Russellkhan (570824) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584094)

The alternatives I've switched to are the EasyList and EasyElements subscriptions for Adblock Plus. They can be found at
http://adblockplus.org/en/subscriptions [adblockplus.org] .

I am a former Adblock/filterset.G user and was just trying out these as a basic starting point, expecting to need to upgrade to one of the more advanced subscriptions after awhile but have been quite pleased with how they worked.

BTWhttp://adblockplus.org/en/faq_project#filterset .g

Use the options (5, Informative)

dantal (151318) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582708)

in addblock just click the radio for hide add instead of remove add, the add are still downloaded but you don't see them

blocking ads vs not seeing them... (2, Insightful)

Animaether (411575) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583910)

what if he doesn't want the ad to be downloaded at all? For bandwidth reasons ( hello Belgium, you poor saps :/ ) or just for the usual "they're tracking me!" reasons?

Interesting, considering... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582718)

I just had an ad come up when I clicked on this article. Not a popup, but one of those annoying things that layer across the content. It smacked up right in the middle of the web page and asked me if i wanted to take a survey.

I had a choice of hitting Yes, or I guess letting the ad sit there blocking my viewing the content.

There was no close option.

I don't mind ads, but what is the purpose of annoying me?

Re:Interesting, considering... (1)

fotbr (855184) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583414)

The purpose is to force you to read the ad.

Yes, its annoying. But the geniuses in marketing deparments think that annoying ads correlate to good sales.

I agree with Cliff here (1)

Utopia (149375) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582736)

Move your email to a different provider.

I for example have been using Windows Mail Desktop [live.com] which lets me consolidate email from several emails accounts from a couple of different providers in one single place.

Ads can be turned off in the program.

Re:I agree with Cliff here (1)

SheeEttin (899897) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583678)

You trust Microsoft with your email?!

I don't know what you're smoking, but I'll take some.

you are dumb (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582830)

Let's see. You block something that your dynamic application is expecting a response for, and all of a sudden it's the dynamic application's fault?

What's more likely is that you're blocking hosts that the app is trying to communicate with, and when it can't communicate with it, it's blocking a socket, or trying to parse "404 not found" instead of "[blink]buy shoes[/blink]". Yeaahh... that's Yahoo's fault, riiiight.

--Robert

roller coaster ride for now on (1)

WeeBit (961530) | more than 7 years ago | (#17582836)

Yahoo is one of the largest competitors online. They have a email database and a yahoo groups data base both with ads. They have a lot to loose if the ads are blocked. But this unblocking of ads on their part will only cause a roller coaster ride for users, and for the makers of the ad blocker software. Most block the ads because of a few security reasons. Plus most ads are annoying anyway. It's hard to find a middle ground when most of the places that have ads keep annoying us with popups, and animated banners from hell. Find a less annoying way to display ads, and maybe the public wont block them. Screen whom you allow to sponsor on your websites, and people will trust you more, and your ads. Or don't show them at all, and come up with a better way to make your living online. The ads haven't changed in years, except for more of them. And less trustworthy. Time for a change folks.

Greasemonkey? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17582868)

im not sure how, but cant greasemonkey be used to stop whatever script they use?

Adblock just isn't worth it to me. (1)

awing0 (545366) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583050)

I use the Flashblock and NoScript Firefox extensions to surf the web. I also use Greasemonkey with user scripts to clean up sites like MySpace. I've found the AdBlock extension makes the already slow and crash prone Firefox even more so. Also, I run my own web site, so I don't like blocking other's ads.

I block Flash and JavaScript because it uses my CPU time, and I'd rather have a smoother web experience.

I just ignore advertising anyways. I don't read or pay attention to it. Do the ads on Yahoo really bother you that much? If so, pay for web mail or use a service like Google with text ads.

Re:Adblock just isn't worth it to me. (1)

Russellkhan (570824) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584178)

Why Flashblock? NoScript handles flash these days. And besides, last time I tried it (awhile ago, I'll admit, since it was back when Noscript didn't handle flash on its own) Flashblock required scripting to be enabled on a page in order to work.

Stylish and CSS ad blocking... (1)

knewter (62953) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583126)

My solution in situations like this is to build custom Stylish [mozilla.org] rules for sites like that. Even if they change the id a whole bunch, they're pretty much constrained to a certain number of xhtml structures, and I doubt they'll be changing that a lot. So do something like: #ad_space div>div{display: none;} (replacing the selectors with an actual path to the frustrating elements). There are also lots of scripts for stylish at http://www.userstyles.org/ [userstyles.org]

Thunderbird or (shutter) Outlook (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17583130)

Thunderbird has some extensions that let you pull your email from online clients like Yahoo or Gmail to your local machine. Some people dont like this because they like being able to access old email from anywhere but the up side is no ads ever. I cant comment on Outlook but I would imagine there is some way to set it up so that you can do the same.

You just noticed? (1)

cjmnews (672731) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583190)

They are sending some of the ads through HTTPS which most ad blockers can't handle.
If you have a blocker that handles SSL ads, then let us know. I'd love to use that with Privoxy [privoxy.org].

Only for proxies (2, Informative)

pestie (141370) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584128)

Only ad-blockers that works as proxies have that issue (Privoxy, for example). Firefox extensions and the like handle HTTPS just fine.

For/Next Loop Problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17583380)

Without checking the code, it sounds as though Yahoo is getting stuck in a for/next loop for 15 seconds. It must do something like this:

Begin For loop
        Attempt to load and display image
        If image is displayed, exit loop
End For loop

By blocking the image you force Yahoo to keep attempting to load images until it finally gives up. The loop temporarily locks up Firefox.

The simplest solution is to dump Yahoo and switch to GMail. That or allow ads, and just rely on your brain to filter them out automatically.

Crashing (1)

crossmr (957846) | more than 7 years ago | (#17583916)

I find with Firefox 2.0 yahoo mail causes it to crash constantly. As in usually 3 or 4 times a day. likely ad related as it happens on a refresh or a page change. I don't use adblock though, I use flashblock (and hosts rules to block their particular ad servers).

Get a domain with your own email (1)

aauu (46157) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584166)

Few few bucks a month you can have your own domain with email. You are spending more effort whining about a FREE service and trying to recast it to your liking than the effort is worth unless you are 13 years old. Domains are portable between providers if your provider starts to suck and you can change registrars if your registrar sucks. Your domain can be with you for life. What are you going to do if Yahoo, google, etc. eventually decides that the FREE service is not worth the cost and terminates the FREE email account and storage. Maybe yahoo, etc. is purchased by someone else who is not interested in continuing the FREE service.

Disable Javascript (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17584466)

You should probably be using NoScript anyway, so just don't whitelist Yahoo. Their no-javascript interface is perfectly good.

Watch ads (1)

jamienk (62492) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584482)

I always watch ads. How else will the people who want me to see their ads get me to see their ads? Also, they want me to buy their products, so I do. How else are they supposed to sell me their products unless they make me watch ads that tell me to? Also, they want to cover my town with ads: let them. How else are we going to see ads unless they cover the whole country? Also, they now want to put ads into movies and books -- good for them! How else can they really get mind-share penetration unless they completely bombard us, and trick us into thinking that our favorite actors and characters like their products? Also, they want to lie in their ads. That's OK too! If they don't lie, then how will we really be motivated to buy their products? Also, they want to pass laws that make it illegal to NOT watch their ads. Good for them! Why would anyone not want to watch the ads? It's for our own good!

My oh my, look how low Yahoo will go! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17584794)

Personally, I can remember when Yahoo was a useful site. Of course, then the greedy and evil PHBs took over. Now, I won't go near the place.

Imho, most upper management people are selfish, greedy and criminal, and they should be held accountable for ripping us all off .

Fool them... (1)

gweihir (88907) | more than 7 years ago | (#17584882)

Best would be a proxy that a) downloads the ads, but b) does not display them or displays empty pictures. Shpuld not be too hard to do in a way the service provider cannot detect...
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