Google still on track to limit ad-blockers in Chrome - gHacks Tech News

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Google still on track to limit ad-blockers in Chrome

Google is still on track to limit the effectiveness of ad-blocker extensions in the company's Chrome web browser by making changes to APIs available to Chrome extensions.

The company revealed plans to publish a new manifest for extensions, called Extension Manifest V3, that defines the core functionality of browser extensions for the Chrome browser.

One of the planned changes impacts content blockers. Without going into details: Google plans to remove an API that is used by content blockers currently to filter content on the Internet. There will be a replacement for the current API that content blockers may use instead to continue blocking web content but it will limit the number of filters that content blockers may load at any given time.

Google plans to limit the number of rules that an extension can specify to 30,000 entries, and the number of dynamic rules to 5000 entries. EasyList alone, a list of blocking filters used by many content blockers, has over 75,000 rules currently. The change will impact the effectiveness of ad-blockers on Chrome unless extension developers find a way to compress the list, find ways around the limit, or bring it down to the 30,000 mark using other ways.

Google has stated in the past that the values are not set in stone and that it may raise the values before the new Manifest lands. Chrome engineers added support for dynamic rules recently and Google has stated that webRequest API blocking capabilities will remain available to Enterprise customers but not for non-Enterprise customers.

Closing Words

ublock chrome

Manifest V3 is available as a draft and it is possible that Google is going to increase the values of the filtering options to values that match what content blocking extensions require.

Google's argument that the limiting happens because of performance impacts of filter lists that are too large seems like a pretextual argument to limit content blockers on the platform.

Raymond Hill, the developer of the content blocking extensions uBlock Origin and uMatrix, suggests that Google is now in a position to limit the effectiveness of content blocking extensions on Chrome. The company is well aware of the fact that content blocking is hurting its revenue; the rise of Chrome put Google in a position to do something about it. Chrome is the dominating browser on today's Internet both on the desktop and on mobile.

It is clear that Google cannot just block content blockers entirely as it would lead to a mass exodus of users to other platforms. Instead, it puts out another argument for the change that makes it seem as if content blockers cause performance issues because of the sheer number of filters that they use.

Limiting the effectiveness of content blockers makes them less desirable for Chrome users. While some may migrate to other browsers, others might not mind that some ads are displayed.

Firefox is probably the prime candidate for Chrome users as it supports extensions on the desktop and on mobile. All major content blocking extensions are available for Firefox as well. Other potential options include the Chromium-based browsers Brave and Opera which both block ads by default, Microsoft's upcoming Chromium-based Edge version, and any other browser that does not impose these limits.

The built-in adblocker that Google launched in Chrome in 2018 blocks only advertisement on sites that use display techniques that violate certain desktop and mobile experiences.

Update: Google provided the following statement:

"Chrome supports the use and development of ad blockers. We’re actively working with the developer community to get feedback and iterate on the design of a privacy-preserving content filtering system that limits the amount of sensitive browser data shared with third parties."

Now You: Would you switch to another browser if Google does not change its plans? (via 9to5 Google)

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Google still on track to limit ad-blockers in Chrome
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Google still on track to limit ad-blockers in Chrome
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Google is still on track to limit the effectiveness of ad-blocker extensions in the company's Chrome web browser by making changes to APIs available to Chrome extensions.
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Comments

  1. Mehdi S said on May 30, 2019 at 9:30 am
    Reply

    Ad guard software blocking ads system wide. Paid/free
    Ad guard DNS blocking ads router wide/system wide :) Free

    Works great. Totally worth the price. Sometimes on sales via ghacks.

    1. Peterc said on May 30, 2019 at 5:52 pm
      Reply

      @Mehdi S:

      I *want* to be able to selectively run ads (at least non-tracking ads) on sites that I *choose* to support. Do systemic solutions like AdGuard make this possible? Content producers have to eat, and blanket ad-blocking strongly pressures them to resort to native advertising, where opinions, reviews, and recommendations are dictated by undisclosed behind-the-scenes payments.

      1. ULBoom said on May 30, 2019 at 6:56 pm
        Reply

        Yes, they do. I use AdGuard, have been for years and it works well. You can either create a rule to whitelist a site or just click on the toolbar icon and turn it off for the site you’re on.

    2. Ale said on May 30, 2019 at 11:51 pm
      Reply

      Pi-hole is a waste of time and energy, it doesn’t block any YouTube ads. Adguard is the way to go if Google really ruins Chromium. I just tested Adguard trial and it blocks ads system wide and hides the blank spots where the ads were.

    3. Gabriel said on May 31, 2019 at 2:59 am
      Reply

      Adguard DNS works fine unless the ads are served from the same domain. In that case, you’d need the paid software.

  2. Doug Lee said on May 30, 2019 at 9:44 am
    Reply

    “Chrome engineers added support for dynamic rules recently and Google has stated that webRequest API blocking capabilities will remain available to Enterprise customers but not for non-Enterprise customers.”

    “It is clear that Google cannot just block content blockers entirely as it would lead to a mass exodus of users to other platforms. Instead, it puts out another argument for the change that makes it seem as if content blockers cause performance issues because of the sheer number of filters that they use.”

    Why not call out this blatant contradiction from Google in your article?

    1. Emanon said on May 30, 2019 at 4:59 pm
      Reply

      They do cause performance issues though, a list of around 300 domains would be enough to block most ADs.

      Most of the domains on EasyList are not even active (they been down for years).

      Personally I use Adguard, so none of this will affect me whatsoever. Not to mention when Google finally pushes this, I’ll be using Microsoft Edge anyway.

      1. John Fenderson said on May 30, 2019 at 8:20 pm
        Reply

        @Emanon: “They do cause performance issues though”

        Yes, but users who want to accept the performance tradeoff to get increased security should be able to do so.

      2. greg said on May 31, 2019 at 12:16 am
        Reply

        @Emanon re: performance issues. Raymond Hill (the developer of uBlock Origin) has spoken to this issue. blockers that are well written (like uBlock Origin) do NOT cause performance issues anymore than running AES encryption does.

        It all depends which blocker you use.

        if I can’t install uMatrix and uBlock Origin, I will leave the web-browser. So I will have to find a replacement to Chrome. I currently hate quite a bit about Firefox though.

      3. Ali said on June 1, 2019 at 5:13 pm
        Reply

        Firefox became far better in web standards, performance and speed.
        also if you had problem with RAM usage you can uncheck “Use recommended performance settings” in settings and lower number of content processors (I seted it to 2)

      4. OzMerry said on June 3, 2019 at 9:37 am
        Reply

        Yes, until this happens.

        https://www.ghacks.net/2019/05/17/going-forward-multi-process-cant-be-turned-off-anymore-in-firefox/#comment-4412241

        It’s not clear, though, whether the option for users to change the number or processes will go as well. Fingers crossed.

      5. Anonymous said on May 31, 2019 at 4:33 am
        Reply

        “I’ll be using Microsoft Edge anyway.”

        Why? I mean rather than a Chromium browser without any spyware (if you don’t want to use Firefox).

      6. walterswhites said on June 7, 2019 at 11:35 am
        Reply

        But adblockers do cause performance issues. They drastically improve performance 99% of the time and they are an amazing antivirus firewall.

  3. Neko said on May 30, 2019 at 9:50 am
    Reply

    It looks like this will be “goodbye” to chrome …

  4. hugo said on May 30, 2019 at 9:51 am
    Reply

    …………..pfff….bye bye chrome, there are plenty good alternatives mentioned above, like Brave for example

    1. TelV said on May 30, 2019 at 12:51 pm
      Reply

      @ hugo,

      Brave merely blocks ads from third party sources and replaces them with its own: https://www.computerworld.com/article/3333806/brave-browser-previews-ad-replacement-feature-in-latest-dev-build.html

      1. Hugo said on May 30, 2019 at 1:11 pm
        Reply

        Well you can install Nano Adblocker and defender on top of that because as mentioned above “..and any other browser that does not impose these limits.”

      2. Mike W. said on May 30, 2019 at 1:31 pm
        Reply

        @TelV

        That’s only if you opt-in to Brave Rewards (which Brave definitely pushes). By default Brave blocks ads and trackers.

      3. TelV said on May 31, 2019 at 3:18 pm
        Reply

        @Mike W.,

        It appears to me from the following thread on Github that Opt-in in the default setting which needs to be disabled (and which could be missed during the installation process): https://github.com/brave/brave-browser/issues/1475

        There’s also a thread on Brave’s community page amounting to the same thing: https://community.brave.com/t/q-remove-brave-rewards/34515/10

      4. Sebas said on May 31, 2019 at 6:04 pm
        Reply

        That has been solved as as I know. You can disable it in the settings menu.

  5. Taron said on May 30, 2019 at 10:12 am
    Reply

    I wonder if Opera, Vivaldi, ChrEdge, and Brave will be affected at some point too. If the limitations are implemented in Chromium instead of just the new “Google(TM) Chrome(TM) for Consumers”, then this would affect all other Chromium-based browsers as well.

    The only alternatives left would be Gecko-based browsers (Firefox and forks), Falkon (Blink engine but not Chromium-based I believe) and Webkit-based browsers (e.g. Safari or Otter).

    However, with Chromium-based browsers at like 80%+ market share and no proper adblocking abilities, surely major website owners will want users to use Chrome and will make their websites incompatible or slower for other browsers to kill adblocking once and for all.

    1. Mike W. said on May 30, 2019 at 1:36 pm
      Reply

      Brave devs have publicly said this will not impact them/if it does they will go in and change it to make sure Brave Shields continue working. I can’t say the same for Opera or Vivaldi, which seem much less interested in making any changes to Chromium and prefer to take vanilla Chromium and pile on their own features on top of it. I could see them being impacted by this/just doing whatever Google does.

      ChrEdge is interesting because Microsoft clearly has the team and the interest to go in and change Chromium. That said, a big selling point of Edge was that it would work with Chrome extensions so….

    2. ormaaj said on July 7, 2019 at 2:45 am
      Reply

      OS / distro packages will probably patch chromium builds. That’s always a last line of defense when upstream refuses to play nice. It just makes the package harder to maintain. No such safeguard for Windows usually. Maybe some chocolatey packages recieve some customization but I think they usually (or always) just distribute stock upstream builds even for open-source projects, even if there are egregous easily patchable misfeatures.

  6. Graham said on May 30, 2019 at 10:20 am
    Reply

    Crap like this is the reason why I never used Chrome. It’s been a honey trap since day one.

    1. Skyjester said on July 8, 2019 at 5:02 pm
      Reply

      This. The original and primary motivation for Chrome was to eliminate the option in other browsers to block third-party cookies.

      The sooner our federal government wakes up the less of this ridiculousness the world will continue to suffer from Google.

  7. Yuliya said on May 30, 2019 at 10:25 am
    Reply

    It’s either this or the telemetry ridden browser which mozilla still creates… Yeah, I’ll keep using Chromium and maybe rely on the hosts file alone. Anything but firefox, it’s got the plague for well over a year now.

    1. Iron Heart said on May 30, 2019 at 11:20 am
      Reply

      Ungoogled Chromium, Iridium would be good options if you need Chromium.

      Bromite or Kiwi browser on Android.

    2. T J said on May 30, 2019 at 11:47 am
      Reply

      @ Yuliya

      “It’s either this or the telemetry ridden browser which mozilla still creates”

      I’ve noticed that whenever Firefox has a problem, you are the first to make multiple, disparaging,
      remarks about Mozilla.
      As you appear to be a Chrome fan, no matter what Google does is bad as far as you are concerned.
      Do you use Firefox. If so, why do you not use the prefs.js file to block telemetry together with the built in settings which stop Firefox “phoning home”. If you do not use Firefox, stop posting Troll comments about the browser !

      Finally, it appears that you are not worried/bothered that Google harvests ALL your personal data and has been penalised for this in the EU.

      1. Iron Heart said on May 30, 2019 at 2:10 pm
        Reply

        @T J

        Firefox phones home by default. Mozilla was also involved in other breaches of privacy, most notably the Cliqz experiment that happened to transmit your entire browsing history(!) to a third party. Yet Mozilla touts itself as privacy-respecting, which is verifiably false.

        You can disable that crap using about:config, yet of course Mozilla is aware of the fact that most are unaware and just don’t know how to disable telemetry.

        Firefox isn’t that much into privacy anymore. Ungoogled Chromium, Iridium, Waterfox, or Pale Moon are much better in that regard. And Tor of course, although that’s impractical in some cases.

      2. Yuliya said on May 30, 2019 at 7:40 pm
        Reply

        T J, is that config file above browser’s own available configurations, about:config including? Because I had everything telemetry disabled, and yet I received – WITHOUT CONSENT, OR ANY WARNING – the two spyware extensions, namely “telemetry-coverage-bug1487578@mozilla.org.xpi” and “fxmonitor@mozilla.org.xpi”: “https://www.ghacks.net/2018/09/21/mozilla-wants-to-estimate-firefoxs-telemetry-off-population/”
        Don’t even try to defend this, I’ve heard it numerous times from different people. No. Disabling telemetry should disable telemetry. Period.
        I don’t like Chromium. It is a terrible browser compared to how, in my opinion, a browser should be like (Opera v12 is what I consider a good browser; mozilla’s idea of a good browser never appealed to me, at least not from v3 onwards – I never got to use Netscape and browsers from that era). And I like Google even less. They are literally going to sell you on the first bidder. But mozilla does the same – the only difference is that Google lets you know they will do it; mozilla falsely brags about carrying their user’s privacy, which is a complete lie, probably one of the biggest lies and misconceptions attributed to a software company in this day.
        I don’t use firefox anymore for personal needs. Unfortunately, due to my work, I still must keep a (portable) firefox around. On the bright side I can do everything with it locally, as long as its malware processes are running my PC does not need to be connected to the WWW in any way.
        I’m still waiting to see what happens with SeaMonkey. That’s the closest thing to my idea of a good browser, but its development is very, very slow.
        Lastly, to clarify your first statement, I will always let everyone know what kind of disgusting company mozilla is, regardless of whether I do or do not use their browser anymore – and by the looks of it soon they will fall into complete irrelevance so I can stop keeping their junk on my PC. It’s called freedom of speech.

    3. Ascrod said on May 30, 2019 at 12:25 pm
      Reply

      Do you think Chrome has any less telemetry than Firefox?

    4. ULBoom said on May 30, 2019 at 6:53 pm
      Reply

      That was useful.

      Hell hath no fury…

    5. Tess said on May 30, 2019 at 6:54 pm
      Reply

      Why telemetry is bad?

      1. Yuliya said on May 30, 2019 at 8:08 pm
        Reply

        You could argue it is not necessary. And the situation becomes even worse when it is forced on the user, something which mozilla does.

      2. Moloch said on May 31, 2019 at 1:37 pm
        Reply

        Its not forced when you can easily turn it off. I was a long time user of Waterfox but recently switched to the latest Firefox, not only its faster to browse, several of my addons work correctly again and i dont have to revert to older versions anymore. I made the theme look exactly like the one i was using on Waterfox too (FT Deepdark). Plenty of userchrome tweaks too to adjust the look of the Firefox to your liking.

      3. Iron Heart said on May 31, 2019 at 2:21 pm
        Reply

        @Moloch

        Waterfox has a 68.0 release now. Just saying.

      4. Yuliya said on May 31, 2019 at 9:30 pm
        Reply

        Moloch, it is forced, you did not read my comment above?
        “https://www.ghacks.net/2019/05/30/google-still-on-track-to-limit-ad-blockers-in-chrome/#comment-4413511”

      5. John Fenderson said on May 30, 2019 at 8:22 pm
        Reply

        @Tess:

        I wouldn’t say telemetry itself is bad. I’d say forced telemetry is bad. Users should not be forced to leak data they don’t want to leak.

  8. Lindsay said on May 30, 2019 at 10:26 am
    Reply

    It boggles my mind that people still willingly use this browser

  9. Matt said on May 30, 2019 at 10:48 am
    Reply

    I has always though Firefox adoption of Chrome’s web extension is a terrible decision. Google pays Mozilla $200+ millions every years for search deal. What are the chance Google wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and demands Mozilla to adopt Manifest V3 too or they cut the money spigot?

  10. crambie said on May 30, 2019 at 10:51 am
    Reply

    I’m expecting or at least hoping brave will code around that. A Brave person said this when it first came up “It won’t impact us because Brave’s Shields aren’t implemented as an extension and don’t depend on that API. Plus, whenever there are Chromium changes which we don’t think are positive for the people who use Brave, we don’t accept them.”

    1. Mike W. said on May 30, 2019 at 4:36 pm
      Reply

      I trust Brave to be able to work around this. As I mentioned earlier, I think the bigger question is what this means for Opera, Edge, and Vivaldi which are all reliant on Chrome extensions to block content.

      1. ShintoPlasm said on May 31, 2019 at 8:09 am
        Reply

        One of Opera’s distinguishing features is its built-in ad blocker.

      2. owl said on June 1, 2019 at 12:57 pm
        Reply

        > One of Opera’s distinguishing features is its

        Oops!
        One of Opera’s most notable negative factors is that it is actually “made in China”.
        We can not ignore this fact.

        Opera browser sold to a Chinese consortium for $600 million
        https://www.engadget.com/2016/07/18/opera-browser-sold-to-a-chinese-consortium-for-600-million/

        Opera’s privacy policy is explicitly stating that your data will be collected and shared with third parties. Additionally, Opera was sold to a large Chinese conglomerate and it’s not clear if there are any protections of user data under Chinese law – unlike, for example, with the GDPR in Europe.
        https://restoreprivacy.com/secure-browser/

      3. Anonymous said on June 13, 2019 at 1:12 am
        Reply

        ” it’s not clear if there are any protections of user data under Chinese law – unlike, for example, with the GDPR in Europe.”

        I don’t know the data snooping laws in China (I just heard from Edward Snowden that it’s literally a translated copy of the US ones) but I know that some of the states in Europe are legally allowed to snoop on whatever data they want to snoop on and that in the private sector, the browser companies that blatantly violate the GDPR have yet to be fined for that.

  11. MoneyMoneyMoneeeeeey said on May 30, 2019 at 11:03 am
    Reply

    Sneaky move. First wait until you have monopoly, then start chipping away at the bits that put you where you are now. The word is: betrayal. Logical behavior for a greedy company. Then again, users today are more informed and aware of these things than a few years back, so d**k moves like this could mean they shoot themselves in the foot this time around. Let’s hope that happens, there’s zero need to use Google Chrome in 2019 anyway.

  12. SpywareFan said on May 30, 2019 at 11:09 am
    Reply

    “Performance issues” is the new excuse for every move against privacy, choice and freedom.
    All the telemetry bloatware, the privacy invading “features”, prefetch, predict, pings, services running in background, scans, and all that should be optionally installed by the user, instead of being forced, don’t cause “performance issues”.
    Do you remeber when browsers were only a tool to access the web, not an ADware swiss knife?

    1. ULboom said on May 30, 2019 at 7:17 pm
      Reply

      I remember when browsing sessions were ruthlessly buried in uncontrollable popups, new windows, pop unders, windows that would open in a screen corner with only a few pixels of the window border corner visible, hundreds maybe thousands at a time if you didn’t hit your computer’s power button quickly.

      It got better, then “tech” ran out of ideas and the biggies became ad companies selling ads no one wants or reads.

      Google calls Chrome a browser based user ad data collector or something similar in their financial reports. Continuing your analogy, Chrome has “evolved” into this:

      https://www.swissarmy.com/us/en/Products/Swiss-Army-Knives/Medium-Pocket-Knives/Swiss-Champ-XAVT/p/1.6795.XAVT

      The beauty of chrome compared to most other browsers is users can’t fold the tools, they’re open all the time, poking and cutting. /s

  13. AnorKnee Merce said on May 30, 2019 at 11:10 am
    Reply

    Google will likely regret this decision as Chrome world market share will drop precipitously.

  14. Chris said on May 30, 2019 at 11:30 am
    Reply

    >Google … puts out another argument for the change that makes it seem as if content blockers cause performance issues because of the sheer number of filters that they use.

    Let us choose!

  15. Anonymous said on May 30, 2019 at 11:49 am
    Reply

    There will be other limitations beyond just a max number of filter rules, for example request header modification will be very restricted. Extension developers will have to ask very nicely to Google employees to change the API (and they may say no) if they want the ability to remove headers that are not in a Google header whitelist. They have already given an example of a case where they would say no so that sites will have the last word on what happens in the browser against the user’s will.

    https://github.com/uBlockOrigin/uBlock-issues/issues/338#issuecomment-495936668

    As usual when Chrome is exposed for doing something evil, the Firefox fanboys are rejoicing that Firefox is so much more pro user and would never dare to do the same thing. What’s funny is that we don’t know yet if Mozilla will or not do the same thing, and if they follow Google on its evil path as they often do, those same fanboys will then reprogram themselves into thinking that it was in fact the right thing to do from the beginning. This is what happened with hyperlink auditing.

  16. Al said on May 30, 2019 at 1:20 pm
    Reply

    I was online many years before ad blockers. I didn’t buy anything from ads then and I won’t now. You can lead me to water, but you can’t make me drink it.

  17. Allen said on May 30, 2019 at 1:36 pm
    Reply

    It’s what monopolies do. Very soon it just won’t pay to use the Internet… unless you’re Google.

    Too bad there’s no longer a company around like Mozilla used to be, back when they cared about what their users wanted. But then Google used to care about things like that, too.

    Sacrificing user experience (control) for the sake of user experience (performance)–both were just an illusion anyway.

  18. Matt said on May 30, 2019 at 2:16 pm
    Reply

    This is making rounds this morning on all the geek spots I frequent on the internetwebs. A lot of IT admins in enterprise environments and geek enthusiasts are watching this closely. There will be a ripple effect if google implements this. For now, home users should get a PiHole setup. Enterprise admins should look into enterprise level adblocking.

  19. Alec77 said on May 30, 2019 at 2:58 pm
    Reply

    What annoys me is that this will of course propagate to Android, and Kiwi Browser (Chrome based) has been working perfectly with uBlock and uMatrix. If it updates downwards, then I am keeping the old version along with old addons, and they can kiss my behind.

  20. Sebas said on May 30, 2019 at 3:15 pm
    Reply

    I hope Brave will not follow, someone here said that will not happen. The current Brave is good, a valuable replacement for Google Chrome. Firefox? I you are so weak you force Eich to resign because of bunch of leftist zealots then you can expect everything from them.

    Martin why do you not give more info on the progress of Brave here, if I may ask?

  21. JohnIL said on May 30, 2019 at 4:03 pm
    Reply

    Well Google show’s its true colors about what is important. Ad revenue has always made up much of Google’s profits. So far Chrome hasn’t lost any momentum with its browser domination and having so many clone’s isn’t really helping that position.

  22. Tim said on May 30, 2019 at 4:07 pm
    Reply

    “Don’t be evil”… until you’ve conquered the market!

    (“Don’t be evil” is Google’s former slogan)

    1. dd45768888888 said on June 3, 2019 at 11:21 pm
      Reply

      It’s “Don’t be evil”, not “Don’t show ads”.

  23. 420 said on May 30, 2019 at 4:17 pm
    Reply

    for a company whos sloagan is “do no evil” they sure do a lot of evil things

    1. dd45768888888 said on June 3, 2019 at 11:23 pm
      Reply

      I’ve checked the dictionary. There is no meaning like ads = evil. I will check again.

      1. catsmoke said on June 15, 2019 at 7:16 am
        Reply

        Advertisements are pollution.

        Advertising is unethical.

        ads = evil

        Advertising should be illegal. And it will be.

  24. P said on May 30, 2019 at 4:51 pm
    Reply

    It sucks what google and mozilla have done to their browsers. The only way things will change is through competition. Pick an alternate browser, get people interested in developing it, donate time or money and build it around the needs of the user. Eventually word of mouth will get around and users will flock to it like they did Firefox back in the mid 2000’s. Otherwise look into pi-hole.

  25. Kevin Kleinfelter said on May 30, 2019 at 5:38 pm
    Reply

    OK. Stop. Even if Chrome bans ad blockers, it does not prevent ad blockers from blocking an unlimited number of URLs. It would require only that ad blockers stop running as browser extensions.

    Browser extensions are a redundant method for blocking ads, if you use multiple browsers anyhow. Use an ad blocker which runs as a proxy server, and you can have ONE ad blocker for all of your different browsers.

    1. Anonymous said on May 30, 2019 at 9:33 pm
      Reply

      Blocker must work in browser to know if request is first or third party, allow for cosmetic filtering and not break secure connections.

  26. Peterc said on May 30, 2019 at 6:15 pm
    Reply

    A lot of commenters here have mentioned Brave as an alternative. Last I read (which wasn’t all that long ago), Brave was hard-coded to enable scripting from Facebook domains — the worst of the worst where user profiling and tracking are concerned — and there was no way for users to block it at the browser level. Is this still the case?

    1. Sebas said on May 31, 2019 at 6:12 pm
      Reply

      There is a discussion here, where Eich himself is also mentioned about this problem: https://community.brave.com/t/how-to-disable-facebook-twitter-secret-whitelist/44961/21

  27. Question said on May 30, 2019 at 6:37 pm
    Reply

    Question: Not using Google Chrome but Chromium with Extensions – would this be a solution ??

    1. ULBoom said on May 30, 2019 at 7:33 pm
      Reply

      Some of the tracking, privacy stuff in Chrome that can’t be disabled is within the unchangeable portion of Chromium’s core, which is not open source. WebRTC could be disabled in Chromium until ver 68, when Google made that impossible.

      They own Chromium and can do whatever they want with it.

      1. Question said on May 30, 2019 at 8:51 pm
        Reply

        Thank you, ULBoom. I did not know that.

  28. 420 said on May 30, 2019 at 6:50 pm
    Reply

    google is doing this on the chromium level so anything built on chromium is effected

  29. Johnny said on May 30, 2019 at 9:49 pm
    Reply

    Maybe Gorhill can make of his extension a program outside of the browser (like Adguard) and continue to block tracking and ad web addresses.

    1. Anonymous said on May 31, 2019 at 2:05 pm
      Reply

      Can blockers working only outside the browser do things like cosmetic filtering and scriptlet injection ?

  30. Mikhoul said on May 31, 2019 at 4:33 am
    Reply

    Brave officially stated today that their webRequest API will be backward compatible: https://twitter.com/BrendanEich/status/1134141335881912320?

    1. Anonymous said on May 31, 2019 at 2:20 pm
      Reply

      It’s not that easy to escape the grip of big browser vendors by forking. If the extension developers don’t bother developing for the forks that keep powerful extension abilities, fork users will have to choose between their old powerful but not updated extensions, or castrated but updated extensions.

      This is one of the many reasons why nowadays big vendors can practically enforce their user hostile shit despite releasing it as “free software”.

      1. John Fenderson said on May 31, 2019 at 6:40 pm
        Reply

        @Anonymous: “fork users will have to choose between their old powerful but not updated extensions, or castrated but updated extensions.”

        Yep, and I choose my old, not updated, extensions. Using an old, not updated browser if need be.

  31. Sunny said on May 31, 2019 at 4:50 am
    Reply

    A possible solution is for the adblock list maintainers to work together to make shorter lists that only have the most used and still active ads and tracker domains.
    The same can be done for the list of malware domains.
    The goal would be to keep the total of the entries below the 30,000.
    If this does not work, then Chrome users will see more ads and tracking. That could push some to use Firefox or Brave.
    I hope Ungoogled Chrome developers can change the Chromium code to fix this, but I doubt they have the resources to oversee and edit the extensions code.

  32. Jozsef said on May 31, 2019 at 8:41 am
    Reply

    I would expect the exodus from Chrome as a result of even the worst case outcome of this to be somewhere between zero and a rounding error. I have been putting ad blockers onto computers for customers and friends for as long as I’ve known about them, presumably as long as they’ve been around. Not a single one had ever heard about such a thing nor were any of them delighted or grateful to see the clutter gone. I rather doubt that any degradation in this feature will inflame those people who deliberately and happily use this piece of spycrap in the first place.

    Repercussions for other Chromium based browsers is a different story and I hope a workaround is possible. In my case the concern is primarily for Vivaldi but also the others which I hope to try soon.

  33. Jozsef said on May 31, 2019 at 8:57 am
    Reply

    Following the link to Brendan Eich’s comment on Twitter that @Mikhoul posted, it looks like a workaround for browsers made for knowledgeable users is a certainty. This means that only Chrome will get worse and perhaps Chromium but enthusiasts will have options.

    1. AnorKnee Merce said on June 1, 2019 at 9:58 am
      Reply

      @ Jozsef

      We will need to wait and see how all this will play out with the Chromium forks, wrt adblocking extensions.

  34. xxx said on May 31, 2019 at 9:22 am
    Reply

    I hope Chromium clones wouldn’t follow this direction.

  35. AnorKnee Merce said on May 31, 2019 at 9:54 am
    Reply

    Looks like M$ will regret adopting Chromium for Edge.

    The Chrome and Chromium adware should be avoided.

    1. Iron Heart said on May 31, 2019 at 10:47 am
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      “Chromium” must not be ruled out because of this. Brave’s adblocker doesn’t use the API that is now under attack, so they’ll be just fine. Brave is based on Chromium.

  36. Al said on May 31, 2019 at 10:55 am
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    They can make us look at ads. But they can’t make us buy anything. I never bought anything from ads in the 23 years I’ve been online and I never will.

    1. Ascrod said on May 31, 2019 at 3:37 pm
      Reply

      It’s not just about trying to make you buy things – it is about companies trying to predict and manipulate your behavior. Many ad scripts collect all kinds of information on you, more than you may realize. This data is then stored forever by companies you likely haven’t heard of, and is used to create a detailed profile about you. In most cases you have no way of modifying or even seeing what has been collected and extrapolated about you, or who has access to that information. The only way to opt out is either use a content blocker or not use the internet. This latest move by Google is trying to remove that first option.

  37. Raj said on June 1, 2019 at 8:14 am
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    Why are we surprised that this is happening? It is a simple strategy. Google has got most of the search engine market. Build a desktop browser and grab the users. Once you have the market, then push ads to them. This was coming since the start. Anyway, it just means Firefox is the browser of choice once again!

  38. Anonymous said on June 1, 2019 at 8:53 am
    Reply

    Unfortunately with Pale Moon portable I tried Adguard but it doesn’t work, a certificat problem with the process palemoon webrowser wtf.

  39. Fran in NH said on June 1, 2019 at 12:18 pm
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    But what about Chromebook users? Will they have ANY control over browser choice? I will have to check my chromebook settings and hope for some answers!

  40. Chuck said on June 1, 2019 at 1:32 pm
    Reply

    Everyone wants free s**t. I would like to see the same people complaining when they have their own business and put up a website. Would you choose to pay a monthly/yearly fee to access a website or free access with ads? I have been around the web for a very long time and I think it’s huffing, puffing and posturing about the ads. People who keep wanting to block ads have no clue as to what business is (online) or in everyday life. You can’t possibly understand because if you did there would be no ad blocker and no nonsense chatter about it. Get over it or PAY. BTW, I do NOT have any websites or businesses, maybe it’s just that I am old and believe in the old adage…if you don’t like it, don’t use it.

    1. AnorKnee Merce said on June 1, 2019 at 4:35 pm
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      @ Chuck

      Google’s/Alphabet’s 2018 revenue is about US$136 billion, mostly from digital ads = US$116 billion. Her 2018 profit is already about US$36 billion, mostly from digital ads, eg ads may be unblockable in Google Search, Google Maps, Youtube videos, etc.
      ……. It is excessive greed for Google to want to degrade adblocking extensions in desktop Chrome.

      Fyi, Chrome for Android already disallows all extensions. Is that fair.? Do you think it is fair for Google to also disallow all extensions in desktop Chrome.?

    2. ascaris5 said on June 3, 2019 at 2:39 am
      Reply

      Ads themselves are ok.

      Ads that make noise, have distracting animations, or that get in the way of the content are not ok.

      Ads that come from a source other than the URL at the top of the screen, which have not been vetted or approved by the site owner, are not ok. The owner of a site doesn’t want dodgy ads on his site, as it makes it seem that he’s dodgy by association, but when that site owner only knows it’s Google ads, he has no idea what is going to be on his site. It’s up to Google to protect the reputation of the third-party sites, and Google doesn’t care if any given site is harmed as long as Google gets paid, which they do, in spades. That’s bad for me, as a viewer of the site, because it means the standard for ads to which I am exposed is much lower. Not okay!

      Those kinds of ads are bad enough, but those that come with trackers and analytics scripts to spy on me and create a profile about me without my consent are definitely not ok, and that’s pretty much all of them. Even though adblockers are kind of heavyweight in RAM usage because they have to store all 100,000 or more rules in memory, enabling one reduces RAM usage by more than half. The ads and trackers use up more memory than the actual content! Once all of those scripts are loaded and executed, they absorbs a significant number of CPU cycles too.

      All of that extra memory consumption, the slower performance, the extra data consumption on one’s cellular plan, the shorter battery life from the extra CPU use and the greater time that the modem has to be in rx mode, all for trackers and analytics that aim to do something malicious to the user. That’s not okay. It’s especially not okay when the ad networks deliver malware, which they have at times. The adbrokers don’t really care about anything but being paid by the advertiser, so they don’t really do a lot of vetting.

      Ads have been around for ages. Print ads have existed as long as the newspaper, and posted bills have been too, along with their more modern counterparts, billboards. When radio and TV came around, commercials soon followed. Any empty space, like the side of a bus or a park bench, becomes a place for ads. They have been all over the place since before any of us was born.

      There was something different about those other ads, though… they never spied on us, delivered malware, tracked our movements, or anything like that.

      When I used to read paper magazines, I usually looked forward to seeing the ads related to the topic of the magazine. When I used to read PC Mag in the early 90s, I wanted to see what the various places had to offer! That was back when ads weren’t personalized to my interests beyond placing them in a given magazine with a given topic.

      That model worked for a very long time, but you put those magazines in electronic form and suddenly it’s “necessary” for those ads to analyze the behavior of the readers, allowing the ad networks to assemble profiles on each and deliver the ads just to the ones it thinks are the most susceptible, and then to judge the effectiveness of that ad with still more spying.

      This gives us the hilarious situation where people who bought a toilet seat on Amazon get inundated with ads for toilet seats for weeks to come, as if the person is a toilet seat aficionado and not just a person who had a broken toilet seat at one point (key word “had,” meaning they bought the thing and moved on). So much better than the old way; surely it’s worth it to the customer to have to give up their privacy for excellence in advertising like that!

      I like to watch aviation videos, and once I inadvertently had my adblocker off when I was doing so on Youtube. I got an ad for Airbus! You can see the “logic” in it: Airbus makes planes, I was watching videos about planes. Still, I don’t own an airline, so I really don’t think I need any Airbus products. The only Airbus I could buy would be about 12 inches long and be made of polystyrene plastic.

      Tasteful, non-abusive, low-bandwidth ads that don’t spy on anyone or include mountains of code and huge javascript libraries (out of which they probably use one function) to waste bandwidth and use up the limited RAM of people’s mobile devices would be another thing, but the way they are now is too much. It’s hard for web site owners, as they are stuck between having to partner with the likes of Google or be left in the dust with no revenue stream, but partnering with companies that spy on their viewers isn’t a good solution. I don’t know what is a good solution, but that’s not it.

      1. AnorKnee Merce said on June 3, 2019 at 9:17 am
        Reply

        @ ascaris5 ……. Great reply.

        The solution is for the US government and/or the EU to crackdown on Google/Alphabet and other digital ad brokers by banning targeted ads via tracking of computer users. IOW, digital ads should be like the previous non-digital or analogue ads.

        During the 1990s, it was a big mistake for the US government to allow the new WWW or Internet technology to be like the lawless Wild Wild West of the 1890s = tech companies were given the freedom or liberty to exploit their users.

  41. Shawn said on June 1, 2019 at 4:00 pm
    Reply

    Easy work around multiple copies of so called extension engine part 1, part 2, part 3 I myself am already running adblock and ublock origin at the same time so if I have to mod the setup to have 8 copies running to get the same old results I will.

  42. anon said on June 2, 2019 at 2:30 am
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    @Peterc : Sounds like the Brave browser is what you need.

  43. Total Sandbox said on June 2, 2019 at 11:17 pm
    Reply

    Brave, Firefox, Edge etc, what if users can’t access their Gmail or watch YouTube with your Brave? This already happens with Edge, so…

    1. Iron Heart said on June 3, 2019 at 9:05 am
      Reply

      Switch the user agent to the standard Chrome one. There are add-ons which achieve this.

  44. lux said on June 10, 2019 at 2:17 am
    Reply

    Good for them, keep boosting the Alt-chrome sector.

  45. no said on June 16, 2019 at 12:01 am
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    firefox a candidate for chrome users? bull**. it’s brave browser.

  46. Herman Cost said on July 7, 2019 at 3:09 pm
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    I solved the problem; Chrome was my backup browser, but I’ve deleted it and enjoyed seeing it go away

  47. Cinikal said on November 16, 2019 at 11:08 am
    Reply

    Do not use google services much myself. Am curious however why V3 is such a threat in an of itself?!? Looks like limits can be changed so why is this such a threat? Is there nothing to be gained?

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