Mozilla proposes three golden rules for ad blockers

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Daniel Cooper
October 8th, 2015
Mozilla proposes three golden rules for ad blockers

Users and advertisers are about to get involved in a dust-up over the role of content blockers, with much of the internet caught in the crossfire. Mozilla is hoping to play peacemaker by proposing a set of three golden rules that will create a "healthy, open web." The most notable is probably the idea that the firms providing browser extensions should be "content neutral," only screening out items that the user wants to avoid. That means blocking malware, pernicious tracking software produced by advertisers and bandwidth-heavy video ads. It's also a subtle two-fingered salute to companies like AdBlock Plus, which lets Google, Amazon and Microsoft amongst others get around the block, so long as they pay a fee.

Next up, there's the principle that ad-blocking software should be "open," enabling publishers to alter their tactics and play nicely, rather than being permanently blacklisted. Meanwhile, rule three says that the people, rather than developers, should have final say on what's being blocked and how. Instead, these apps should come with detailed, granular control so individuals can tailor their experience to their needs. Right now, they're just a list of ideas that are being kicked around, with the organization asking for users to chip in with useful suggestions.

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