Built-In Advertising is Coming to Firefox

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Built-In Advertising is Coming to Firefox

Mozilla wants to add sponsored, packaged content to Firefox's tiled home screen.

Firefox 27 New Tab Square

Mozilla's Firefox web browser, now in version 27, is in the top three web browsers in any market share breakdown you'll find online. It typically sits at number three, behind Google Chrome and Microsoft's Internet Explorer, with a share hovering around 20 percent, give or take.

So it's kind of a big deal when Mozilla announces a new Directory Tiles program, which will see the default Firefox home tab populated with content advertisements.

"Directory Tiles will instead suggest pre-packaged content for first-time users," said Darren Herman, Mozilla's VP of Content Services. "Some of these tile placements will be from the Mozilla ecosystem, some will be popular websites in a given geographic location, and some will be sponsored content from hand-picked partners to help support Mozilla's pursuit of our mission."

Emphasis added. Firefox will still go to your homepage when opened, but every blank tab opened thereafter will display some sort of sponsored content. It's unclear how these advertisements will affect the blank tabs after tiles are populated with your most visited sites. Right now, my tile screen is populated by Facebook, Bank of America, ESPN, Google, and the like -- will some of these tiles be replaced by ads? Or will the ads be pushed out once you have nine frequently visited sites?

Herman does go on to say that sponsored content, "...will be clearly labeled as such, while still leading to content we think users will enjoy."

Permalink

Wonderful. Now to block automatic updates.

Oh great. Can anyone suggest a new browser, please? I hate chrome, this is the last straw for firefox, and nothing else that I know of supports addons.

Before the mods race to click the warning button, to reach there targets for the month, I would like preface this with "I don't endorse the use of adblock".

How would adblock effect this advertisement bombardment?

I am willing to bet the percentage of users will take a hit, nobody likes ads at the best of times, when they get shotgunned at you, it tends to drive people away.

Adverts always make me feel like a cash cow, "well, a lot of people visit the site, how can we make money from them? MORE ADS!".

It's not like we have to see ads everywhere in all shapes and forms, at just about every moment of the day.

Somethingfake:
Wonderful. Now to block automatic updates.

That's what I did after reading this news xD

It wouldn't bother me if they implimented it solely in that home-tab or what's it called.
Never cared for that. I visit google everytime I open a new tab,
hope they keep that option of messing with the config open.

Oh well Firefox we had a good run. I don't like ads at the best of times so I certainly don't want them built into my browser. I guess it's time to check out Opera.

Somethingfake:
Wonderful. Now to block automatic updates.

Don't worry, there will be an add-on that disables this and just gives you the security updates. :P

How to get rid of your market share 101 .. Not even Microsoft does this?

But surely they must realise that it's going to take the community all but a day or two to come up with an addon that removes those home page ads?

If anything, I'm definitely not above dropping firefox if this goes through; what a shame!

Damn it Firefox!
Stop eating from the Internet Explorer's glue jar!

Nobody likes having ads being shoved down their throat

just went and blocked auto updated in both options (which seems more of a placebo) and in about:config. already have things that prevent tracking, and the whole "we thing our users will enjoy" smacks of data tracking.

Aariana:
Oh great. Can anyone suggest a new browser, please? I hate chrome, this is the last straw for firefox, and nothing else that I know of supports addons.

Try Comodo or Comodo IceDragon which are based off Chromium and Firefox respectively.

That and Chromium web browsers support addon as well, but you have to go through the Google Playstore.

I'd approve if it was only add-ons suggested according to my activities on the browser. Otherwise, it sounds like they need more money and this is one way they can do this. However, I and thousands of other users don't have the cash to spare, and given how things are going, won't be able to for years...

Aariana:
Oh great. Can anyone suggest a new browser, please? I hate chrome, this is the last straw for firefox, and nothing else that I know of supports addons.

Opera is a good one. It is slower than chrome but it is quite independent of all this crap and it can be modified and has lot of addons to go with it.

Edit:
But yeah... Isn't this going bit too far with advertising.
Because that start to feel rather intruding.
Well now I know what browser I will not use at least.

SolveMedia:
"Industrial Revolution"
fitting somehow.

This would actually encourage me to switch back to Internet Explorer, but they seem to have made Explorer 11 incapable of running Flash for some insane reason.

Meh, I don't pay attention to the tiles for the few uses I have for Firefox anyway, so as long as this doesn't hamper performance I don't care. (And I only use Firefox because I like the downloader for it, but otherwise use Chrome.)

Aariana:
Oh great. Can anyone suggest a new browser, please? I hate chrome, this is the last straw for firefox, and nothing else that I know of supports addons.

Opera has addons, last I remember.

I did love Opera, but the speed didn't compare to Chrome, so I never stuck with it.

If the built in ads will be annoying, I can always move to Chrome.

If it doesnt mean i get spammed with more ads after i leave the home tab to visit a website thats usually playing unmutable video ads (The Escapist, for example) then i can live with it.

If it means that theyre letting advertisers pay to bypass their own noScript thing, then fuck it, time to get an inde browser.

[quote="Aariana" post="7.842217.20717711"]Oh great. Can anyone suggest a new browser, please? I hate chrome, this is the last straw for firefox, and nothing else that I know of supports addons.[/quote

Palemoon. It's a faster stripped down version of Firefox designed to look like old Firefox and not have any Firefox's new hangups.

Muahaha. The so-called, self-proclaimed "king" has sold out after a long history of being an already-crappy browser that was overhyped to hell and back by smug teenage know-it-alls on forums because it wasn't IE.

Sucks to be you, losers! I switched to Chrome years ago!

Just use the addon "New Tab Homepage". It overrides Firefoxes default behaviour andsends you straight home where you can be shown adverts on facebook or google.

P.S. As someone who develops for these browsers I still back firefox over the other two main ones. Even with this you can easily turn it off.

Pardon me for a moment. *gets up, and goes to cuss mozilla out on thier feedback form*
Alright. Well. Time to see how chrome is running.

omega 616:
Before the mods race to click the warning button, to reach there targets for the month, I would like preface this with "I don't endorse the use of adblock".

How would adblock effect this advertisement bombardment?

This was my thought as well.

As stated, I would sooner kill my own family before I would endorse the literal internet Adolf Hitler that is Adblock, but isn't the ease of the adblock addon one of the reasons many people use Firefox?

This is pretty shitty, but to be honest it doesn't effect me at all as I have never and will never use the Firefox tiled home screen.

Idiocy, I would rather pay monthly than get bombarded with ads, why do you think I left chrome in the gutter. I feel betrayed I've use Firefox for ages.

Well, I guess I'll go back to Netscape.

Honestly this doesn't bother me, as long as they stay on the new tab page I've no problem with this. I see so few ads on the internet now days that it wouldn't be an issue really.

synobal:
Honestly this doesn't bother me, as long as they stay on the new tab page I've no problem with this. I see so few ads on the internet now days that it wouldn't be an issue really.

It's in the nature of advertisers to spread their crap around. It won't stay on the new tab page.

How to stop this:

visit url "about:config"
set value of "browser.newtab.url" setting to "about:blank".

Poof, no more future adverts. Also, no more annoying new tab page.

.... unless they remove this option because they want money, in which case: Firefox, I'm leaving you.

Which will leave me browserless, since I hate all the alternatives even more. Infact, I already hate Firefox, its just the only browser (more-or-less) that lets you dig into its innards and rip out all the useless crap you don't want.

Adverts have their place in the online ecosystem. Built into the browser itself is not one of them.

Doesn't this only affect you if you leave all the blocks unpinned? So if you pin your favourite most viewed sites to each block then you won't get any adverts at all. I already have them all filled. You can either click the little pin icon on a page that's already listed or drag the little world symbol next to the URL onto a free block on the tabs page.

Arstechnica which is probably more reliable than other sites, consistently puts Firefox above Chrome in usage

image
http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/01/windows-8-x-breaks-10-percent-internet-explorer-11-makes-a-splash/

Chrome pre-loads a lot of pages even if you don't click on them in a way that artificially inflates their usage numbers.

O maestre:
Idiocy, I would rather pay monthly than get bombarded with ads, why do you think I left chrome in the gutter. I feel betrayed I've use Firefox for ages.

I suspect it's because of Chrome that this is happening. All web browsers basically make their money from search engines which pay them to set that search engine as default. Before Chrome existed, Google was the company paying Firefox. After Chrome started Google continued paying Firefox for a while (presumably so as not to break anti-competition regulations). However as Google has become more corporate they've been less willing to pay Firefox for that ad revenue. It makes sense, if they deny Firefox money then Firefox can't compete. So I believe Firefox has been surviving off Yahoo, which clearly has less money to dole out than Google. They're probably investigating these routes because they don't believe that Yahoo will be reliable enough or that Google will offer them much in the way of advertising money anymore

I see people are getting increasingly annoyed with advertising. This pleases me. Advertising in its current form is an abomination. I try to just filter it out and not pay much attention to it, but it gets irritating when ads keep popping up.

I recently stopped using Firefox anyway, it was becoming a resource hog for some reason. It sucks though because I like the addons for it that you can't have on Chrome

Well there will always be addons, even ones not endorsed by Mozilla, to disable this or go straight to the page of your choosing when you open a new tab. I'm fine with this as long as the ads don't have auto-audio, don't take up the bandwidth of the entire internet backbone just to show me a grainy flash video, don't track me, and this ad campaign does let the Moz think they can build banners ads into functional areas of Firefox. If even one of those criteria are not met, it will get the door. I usually have tons of tabs open and use the ones I'm finished with to go on to new sites anyway, so this won't affect me, yet.

I can see that advertizing is how the internet works and why we aren't paying to use every site and Mozilla or Google every few years for a major upgrade to our browsers. But, when advertizing goes from informing potential customers of a product or service's existence and benefits and gently persuading them to try it to force feeding us constant barrages of obvious scams, annoying videos and flash animations that destroy your browser's performance while on the page, and tracking our browsing so to target us withads that MIGHT be specific to our interest(but may even have the prices bumped up to screw someone over who is more likely to buy such a such product), that's when I say fuck it and find a new program or site to use.

I left cable tv behind and hated my job at the movies or even showing up early to a movie because those unskippable commercials gnawed and slashed at my sanity. At least on the interests, you could ignore those banner ads with the dancing gif lady saying "(insert your city here) mom finds the one trick to (insert way to save money or loose weight here)", the ones with "Shoot here to win a PSWii60xbone4U", or even the loathsome "Your PC is infected with a virus click here to {make sure it will be}". It still kinda irks me, though, when a major site devoted to shopping like ebay, who should have enough revenue from sales to pay to stay online, putting banner ads on their pages.

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