So long, popups

I switched to Chimera some time ago, notably because of its ability to block those annoying unsollicited popups that are the visual equivalent to browsing as spam is to email. Netscape has just released version 7.01 of its browser which includes the same feature. Netscape's DevEdge has more information on how this works and how you can control it for your own site. Needless to say, this ability will prove to be very popular (if only it was that simple to get rid of spam), until marketers find a workaround.

Although it was obvious to me that this popup barrage would easily make its way through any browser that is not tied to a revenue model, I thought Netscape wouldn't add it to its flagship browser because it would kill its main cash cow (the browser side lives mainly on ad revenues from its portal and affiliates) and would infuriate its own paying customers (the ones who want you to click on those popups). But they found a trick...

Netscape 7.01 gives you two options to control popups: you can either allow them and add domains to an exception list (which are then blocked) OR suppress them all except for a list of domains from which they are allowed. Chimera does the same. The trick is that Netscape 7.01 comes with a predefined list of domains that are, unsurprinsingly, carefully selected (screen capture). So if you don't modify this predefined list, you'll be safe from annoying popups on MSN, but ironically not on netscape.com.

Now that's a smart trick, make advertisers pay twice: once for the ad, once for the right of not being blocked upfront. And thanks to Netscape for making our life better outside the AOL web space!

1 Comment

Just a side note to say that you have _complete_ control over the web domains on which pop-ups are blocked. There is indeed an initial list of domains where pop-ups will not be blocked (including, but not limited to, AOLTW web properties). But you may add or remove domains in this list.

In some cases (depending of the Netscape 7.01 distribution/language you use), the list may be empty.

mensuelles Archives

Recent Entries

  • Steve Jobs

    "Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because...

  • Your privacy on MOTOBLUR by Motorola

    After the Nokia Ovi Store carelessness, it's now Motorola who's allowing strangers to get access to your private information on their MOTOBLUR portal. Exactly like...

  • How to resume a broken ADC download

    (I'm documenting this trick for myself to remember, but it can be useful for others…) Apple, on its Apple Developer Connection site, has a bad...

  • WTF is this ‘myEventWatcherDiv’ doing in my web?

    All of a sudden I started to find the following line in most of the web pages I was browsing, including ones I made where...

  • Your privacy on Nokia Ovi Store

    My friend Adam Greenfield recently complained about the over-engineering culture at Nokia: I was given an NFC phone, and told to tap it against the...