now i just browse with cookies enabled, but the "keep until" setting is "i close firefox". now every time i close firefox, all the transient tracking cookies and other bullshit are erased. for sites that i actually want to stay logged into, like hacker news, or that need to store long-term cookies for authentication like banking sites, i use the "cookie monster" add-on and just click its icon in the corner and tell it to allow cookies for the current site and no other 3rd party hosts. my current firefox cookie list is small, and only has cookies for sites that i know about.
1) temporarily allow cookies from some domains;
2) permanently allow cookies from some domains.
Gradually you can build up a whitelist of just only those sites where you will allow cookies, even while blocking their own advertisers/trackers from setting cookies, while keeping everything else off.
blocking by default and only allowing the current domain breaks quite a few sites that refuse to work without an active session cookie. some break subtly and some throw you into a redirection loop. that is why i accept all by default, but firefox marks them as session cookies so they don't survive across browsing sessions, and using cookie monster i whitelist a few domains.
I've also started using Better Pop Up Blocker because either networks are getting smarter or Chrome's crap at blocking popups:
Remember, the plugin got sold a year or two ago to a commercial company selling advertising services.
I rolled back to the 2.4.2 version and no auto-whitelist.
If you are having issues with Ghostery, please post on the support forum at http://www.ghostery.com/feedback.
I've seen this quote around a lot lately, and it makes me very uneasy.
I understand the idea it is expressing, and as a phrase it is attractive because it is short and simple.
The problem is that the sentiment behind it ("advertising corrupts companies to put advertisers instead of users first") just isn't true. Not only have newspapers and TV stations been dealing with this for years, but there are numerous other examples.
For example, Sebastian Vettel is paid by Red Bull. Does that he (or the Red Bull F1 team) prioritizes selling Red Bull above winning races?
Media organisations are interesting - there are numerous cases of newspapers publishing stories that are against the interests of their advertisers.
There are also many cases of media organisations holding back stories that are detrimental to their advertisers. But is this any worse than product companies selling goods that are unreliable because of cost savings made during manufacture? What about a case like BP, where an oil spill directly damaged their customers, but BP acted in the interest of its shareholders instead of its customers.
Saying something like "company culture is the critical factor" sounds like some kind of management-speak way of avoiding the issue. Yet - to me at least - it is the only explanation that matches the behaviours we see in the market.
Free-to-air TV is only "free" because the TV network is selling your eyes to someone else. Radio is only free because they're selling your ears to someone else. Even my own site "fivesecondtest.com" is only free because you help us do user testing which we can then charge other people for.
The point is, if there is money changing hands, and it isn't coming FROM you, then you can be sure someone is paying FOR you.
Given that there is a term for avoiding this (Chinese Wall), many companies go out of their way to make sure this doesn't occur.
I use this: http://someonewhocares.org/hosts/
Quality of life significantly improved.
Tracking companies rely on clean data, they even report on exact numbers coming out of these systems, so instead of people trying to avoid being part of their clean data, it would be far more effective to make their data dirty so they can't trust it (or sell it).
The German Chrome team mentioned this in a blog post a short while back. But unfortunately the announcement was very vague and doesn't have many details. The changes don't seem to have landed in the canary build yet. If I understand the blog post correctly they are in the middle of building the feature.
This is the (German) blog post I'm referring to. http://google-produkt-kompass.blogspot.com/2011/06/chrome-ma...
I don't think Google Translate can be of much help here, because even the German version is very vague about this feature. Also, the post is mainly about other things, they only mention the new cookie prompt in one sentence.
Lovely idea though, but I imagine the author is himself collecting the stats on my browser testing habbits :)
As with all Firefox addons, you can right-click + save-as the xpi file, run "unzip addon-name.xpi" and look at the source.
I guess I can answer my own question by saying it doesn't matter. If browsers did this, websites would be written so that an ad provider's resources are loaded with a querystring that identifies the user. So much for not being aggressively tracked.
It just blocks everything which comes from an external domain.
So in most cases it will also block malware, because malware authors seem to wait to use a 2-stage system.
They let different hacked websites point to one where the malware will be downloaded from.