Monday, January 25, 2010

How to Stop Internet Ads

I predate the popularity explosion of the World Wide Web.  Back in the day, I was a regular BBSer, logging on regularly for my daily fix of Legend of the Red Dragon.  I remember when the internet was used only for its intended purpose: porn.  I think that advertising has just about surpassed porn on the internet. 

Pop-ups, flash ads, and dozens of bandwidth hogging graphical ads on every single page.  How can people stand it, particularly with dialup?  Internet use is faster and less cluttered without them, and it is relatively easy to do.  How to you stop internet ads?  I've been doing it for years, so it isn't until I use so someone elses computer that I'm reminded how irritating it is.  Here's how:

Download, install, and use Mozilla Firefox.  More reliable, faster, customizable, more secure, and not forced on you by the evil empire.  I love tabs!!  I love Session Manager too. 

Customize Firefox with add-ons.  There are lots.  For de-advertising the internet, the important ones are:
Adblock Plus: Automatically blocks ads in two ways.  First is a filter subscription - a giant list on known ad sites that are prevented from loading.  Second is manually - some ads sneak through, some idiot uses annoying animated gifs, whatever.  Right clicking on the offending image will allow you to block it forever.  I recently updated to a newer version of adblock, so my stats were reset, but it had blocked well over half a million ads for me!
Flashblock:  Only loads flash animations if you want them to.  All flash animations on the page are replaced by an icon.  If you want to see the animation (often a video), click on the icon.  You can also rightclick to 'whitelist' your favourite/trusted sites.

Enjoy.  You've just stopped 99% of the internet ads you're likely to come across.  You're not wasting the bandwidth you pay for on crap you don't want to see.


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