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Blocking unsolicited content

Simon Sapin,

This is, of course, solely my personal opinion.

The Mozilla Blog published Proposed Principles for Content Blocking. One of these proposed principles is:

Content Neutrality: Content blocking software should focus on addressing potential user needs (such as on performance, security, and privacy) instead of blocking specific types of content (such as advertising).

I disagree. I absolutely want to block all advertising.

What makes browsing the Web without ad-blocking such a horrible experience is not just the load times, the malwares, and the tracking (although these things are horrible). It’s also the pop-overs masking actual content, the distracting animations, and the auto-playing videos that start blasting sound without consent.

But even more “reasonable” ads are fundamentally about competing for your attention and misleading you away from whatever you’re currently looking at. To re-use a term from email spam, they are unsolicited.

Even if it’s perfectly performant, secure, and privacy-respecting I want to block all unsolicited content.