Ad-Free Browsing

Through long-term commercial saturation, it has become implicitly understood by the public that advertising has the right to own, occupy and control every inch of available space. The steady normalization of invasive advertising dulls the public’s perception of their surroundings, re-enforcing a general attitude of powerlessness toward creativity and change, thus a cycle develops enabling advertisers to slowly and consistently increase the saturation of advertising with little or no public outcry.

The Anti-Advertising Agency

If you’re tired of all the advertising you see on the web, follow the steps below:

  1. Download and install Firefox if you don’t use it already.
  2. Install Adblock Plus—it’s the most popular extension for Firefox.
  3. Restart Firefox and when prompted, choose the subscription to EasyList—it’s a free subscription to a list of ad patterns maintained by Rick752.
  4. If you use Google—that’s any Google service, e.g search, maps, mail—go and install OptimizeGoogle.
  5. Restart Firefox and open Tools > OptimizeGoogle Options.
  6. Go through the list of Google services in the left column and for each one, check the ‘Remove ads’ option. Click OK when you’re done.
  7. Enjoy ad-free browsing!

Here’s a screencast of the steps above, which also includes before and after examples. Note: In the screencast I use CustomizeGoogle but as far as I can see that extension is no longer being updated – so use OptimizeGoogle instead (linked above).

Finally, if you get bored of all the empty space previously occupied by ads, have a look at the excellent Add-Art project. It uses Adblock Plus, but goes further by actually replacing ads with art. What a great idea! 🙂

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2 Comments

  1. Hans
    Posted 4 December 2008 at 12:07 am | Permalink

    With reference to your recent post (no comment section anymore?), I recommend NoScript if you want to fully protect yourself against intrusive, as well as malicious, website and scripts.

    And it protects you from XSS to boot.

  2. Posted 16 December 2008 at 1:09 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the suggestion Hans. I forgot to enable comments on that post. 🙂

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