back to article Firefox to emit ‘occasional sponsored story’ in ads test

Some users who bravely test betas of Mozilla’s Firefox browser will soon also test an “occasional sponsored story” as the browser-maker tries to re-invent web ads. This story starts with Mozilla’s February 2017 acquisition of web-clipping app Pocket. Pocket let users bookmark content they like, then sync that list of sites …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So a web browser with targetted adverts built in. I would have expected that from Slurp's Chrome, but not from Firefox.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      " would have expected that from Slurp's Chrome, but not from Firefox."

      Firefox is corporation, even if it doesn't have investors. Has to pay the bills somehow, and with sponsorship deals with Google and Yahoo fading away (in different ways), they've got to get revenue from somewhere. I don't like the ads idea, but as so few people will donate, there's only so many other options.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        So Mozilla should give them options to donate. A built-in tip jar to sponsor content where Mozilla gets a small commission per tip might be a way of reinventing the web instead of just spamming web ads yet again.

      2. FF22

        "Firefox is corporation, even if it doesn't have investors. Has to pay the bills somehow, and with sponsorship deals with Google and Yahoo fading away (in different ways)"

        In reality Mozilla made more money from these sponsorship agreements last year, than ever before (>half a billion dollars), and more money it could ever possibly spend on actual and useful development.

        This latest attempt of their is really just about greed, and is anti-competitive anyway. Obviously a browser manufacturer should not be allowed to show ads of their own when at the same time they partially or fully blocking their competitors from doing the same.

        1. John Lilburne Silver badge

          Exactly. How many centuries of FOSS development does it take to squander 500 million on security bug fixes?

      3. JohnFen Silver badge

        I'll start with a disclaimer -- I don't use Pocket, so these "sponsored stories" don't affect me at all.

        " I don't like the ads idea, but as so few people will donate, there's only so many other options."

        It might go down a bit nicer if they didn't try to engage in personally-targeted advertising. Sure, it's better that it's done on your local machine rather than on an ad company's server, but there are still privacy implications. I don't mind seeing ads (within reason), but I do greatly mind any leakage of information about me to the advertisers.

    2. paulf Silver badge
      Unhappy

      FTA: "Mozilla reckons the fact all its products are open source will help give users confidence that their privacy has been respected and protected,"

      Will there be any processing outside the browser involved in serving those ads? Will that serverside code be open sourced like the browser? I'm guessing if the answer to the first question is "yes' then the answer to that second question is "No".

      1. MrWibble

        Since El Reg won't link to the source, I will:

        https://blog.mozilla.org/futurereleases/2018/01/24/update-on-pocket-and-firefox-integration/

        which then links off to:

        https://help.getpocket.com/article/1142-firefox-new-tab-recommendations

        And this states:

        Important Note: Neither Mozilla nor Pocket receives a copy of your browser history. The entire process of sorting and filtering which stories you should see happens locally in your copy of Firefox.

        So, apparently, no processing outside of the browser. Doesn't answer the other ingestion tho.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

    They should lobby to get funding from the BBC licence fee in order to save the Firefox Browser from ads. After all, browsers are pretty much the defacto delivery system for BBC programming content today, going forward. It's about time we looked at a date of switching off TV transmissions to use those airwaves for data.

    It would also be a way to show the World, once respected British values of fairness, decency, tolerance, that we seem to be losing. Co-funding Firefox would be a good move, regards the UK Licence fee if it is (at all) to stay relevant.

    Firefox without Ads, or The One Show? I know which one I'd rather was funded from the licence fee.

    1. Horridbloke
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

      It's an intriguing idea. There should be a requirement for Firefox to play the national anthem whenever a tab is closed, and perhaps use the web camera to check the user is standing to attention.

      (No euphemism intended.)

      1. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

        Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

        404 error pages to be replaced with a short film of the potter's wheel?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

          "404 error pages to be replaced with a short film of the potter's wheel?"

          The aquarium is more soothing. Theresa May might prefer a field of rippling corn.

        2. Arthur the cat Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

          404 error pages to be replaced with a short film of the potter's wheel?

          Introduce the Millennials to the joys of Muffin the Mule!

          "We like Muffin, Muffin the Mule …"

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

            Do what you want to the mule, its none of my business.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

            "Introduce the Millennials to the joys of Muffin the Mule!"

            He was a wooden actor though.

          3. TheVogon Silver badge

            Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

            "We like Muffin"

            Or muff...

          4. bazza Silver badge

            Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

            Introduce the Millennials to the joys of Muffin the Mule!

            "We like Muffin, Muffin the Mule …"

            Or as Billy Connelly put it, "Muffin the Mule, not allowed to do that anymore..."

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: There should be a requirement for Firefox to play the national anthem

        Smith! 6079 Smith W! Stand up for the national anthem!

      3. TheVogon Silver badge

        Re: Firefox should get money from UK's TV licence...to save it from ads.

        "There should be a requirement for Firefox to play the national anthem whenever a tab is closed,"

        And to randomly point out in search results facts that Americans are commonly ignorant of such as Brits have the best teeth of any country in the world, broke as an adjective only means out of money, and that anthropomorphic global warming is a thing!

  3. rmason Silver badge
    Joke

    This will go down brilliantly.

    All users of firefox really want is a better class of adverts. They don't mind them really, not when you get right down to it.

  4. druck Silver badge
    Stop

    Bye Bye

    The first ad I see built in to the browser will trigger an instant uninstall.

    1. Steve the Cynic Silver badge

      Re: Bye Bye

      The first ad I see built in to the browser will trigger an instant uninstall.

      You never used old-skool(1) Opera in "I didn't pay for this" mode? Not only did it have built-in ads, but they were part of the browser frame, not embedded in special pages.

      (1) The Unreliable Source claims this period was from version 5.0 in 2000 to the version before 8.5 in 2005.

      1. Ilgaz

        Opera was fine

        I used it in that period, they didn't do any false claims and actually they did invent opt-in profiling in the hey day of spyware. They said that they don't profile users however users can provide their own so they can get relevant ads.

        Qualcomm also used the same scheme in Eudora.

        You won't find any non troll on Web to claim they were spying.

        1. Steve the Cynic Silver badge

          Re: Opera was fine

          You won't find any non troll on Web to claim they were spying.

          I wasn't trying to say they were. My point was just that "browser with embedded ads" is not a new thing.

    2. wolfetone Silver badge

      Re: Bye Bye

      "The first ad I see built in to the browser will trigger an instant uninstall."

      I'm not even giving it a chance. Deleted complete from my system, installed Palemoon for the time being.

      1. AlbertH

        Re: Bye Bye

        Nice idea, but Palemoon doesn't have all the features that are baked-in to the bigger browsers like Firefox and Chrome.

        Looks like I'm going to have to contribute to the "Otter" browser project!

        1. AJ MacLeod

          Re: Bye Bye

          You're right, it doesn't have all the same features - it does however have the ones I actually want and use, including playing audio on a standard Linux system using ALSA.

          Mozilla can't die off quickly enough for me now - they're far past the stage where they've become merely embarrassing, getting to the point where they're becoming a liability. Actually, come to think of their political meddling - they've already reached that one too.

          1. Updraft102 Silver badge

            Re: Bye Bye

            We still need Mozilla to write the security updates for Firefox forks that are still usable. Backporting is a lot of work, but not as much as writing the updates would be.

          2. HereIAmJH

            Re: Bye Bye

            "Mozilla can't die off quickly enough for me now - they're far past the stage where they've become merely embarrassing, getting to the point where they're becoming a liability."

            It time for Firefox to burn up and spawn a new browser. Get back to the light weight platform with features added through plug-ins.

            They always say, developers prefer to start fresh rather than maintaining legacy code bases.

            1. JohnFen Silver badge

              Re: Bye Bye

              "It time for Firefox to burn up and spawn a new browser."

              This is what they should have done instead of transforming Firefox -- create an entirely new browser. The changes to Firefox were so extreme that they pushed a lot of people away from it. If they'd made a different browser instead, and left Firefox alone, it would have alienated far fewer people.

          3. JohnFen Silver badge

            Re: Bye Bye

            "Mozilla can't die off quickly enough for me now"

            Mozilla (the nonprofit) isn't without problems, but is one of only a handful of organizations that work to defend normal people against bad actors. We need them as much as ever.

            Separate that out from the browser, which is exceedingly disappointing on a number of points. I'm not using Quantum, but I'll continue to donate to the foundation.

            1. AJ MacLeod

              Re: Bye Bye (@JohnFen)

              I'm afraid it's not Mozilla (the nonprofit) we need - it's a complete replacement for them. As far as I'm concerned, they are a bad actor themselves; maybe not quite such a bad actor as Google or Microsoft but certainly they've conclusively proven they understand nothing about and care nothing for their users.

              Like many here I'm sure, I used Firefox since before it was even called that and I'm very disappointed in just what a mess Mozilla have made of what was a real success story; at this point I just want them gone and slightly optimistically hope someone else will gather enough momentum to replace them.

              1. JohnFen Silver badge

                Re: Bye Bye (@JohnFen)

                Mozilla (the foundation) is a different entity from Mozilla that makes Firefox.

        2. Martin Gregorie Silver badge

          Re: Bye Bye

          Palemoon is fine by me, especially now it has the "Cookie Exterminator" extension running alongside Ublock Origin.

        3. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Bye Bye

          "Palemoon doesn't have all the features that are baked-in to the bigger browsers like Firefox and Chrome."

          I guess that can be important to some, if true (I use Waterfox rather than Pale Moon, so I dunno). Personally, I have exactly zero use for 90% of the features that browser have been adding over the last few years, so that isn't exactly a drawback.

        4. Zippy's Sausage Factory

          Re: Bye Bye

          Nice idea, but Palemoon doesn't have all the features that are baked-in to the bigger browsers like Firefox and Chrome.

          Some of the "selling points" of Pale Moon are exactly that it DOESN'T have these features - newer sync (less secure than older sync), any support for DRM, Australis, etc...

          (Disclaimer: Pale Moon has been my main browser for well over a year now...)

        5. Adrian 4 Silver badge

          Re: Bye Bye

          TBH, Palemoon is better off without them. That's why I use it.

          However, I don't see it's a big problem when using Firefox. It's open source. If I don't like it, I can just build a version that doesn't do that (in fact, I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised if it can be configured off).

          You might respond that that's not an option for everybody. But it is : you can pay someone to do it for you if your chosen way to make a living doesn't include coding.

          And why should it cost you do it ? Firefox is free. It doesn't owe you anything. In general, be glad that it doesn't often treat you like a product, unlike other browsers. And gives you an escape route.

    3. John Lilburne Silver badge

      Re: Bye Bye

      A recent firefox update rendered a couple of the plugins that I've used for the last 10 years obsolete. So I went back to the 56 version of the browser and configured it never to download or update itself again. Version 56 does all that I want or need.

      1. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Waterfox

        Waterfox works with all the addons FF 56 does. It also has all of the security updates backported from more recent FF releases (though it may take a bit as it is a one man project atm), has all of the questionable stuff like telemetry, ads, Pocket, experimental unrequested addons, etc., removed, still allows NPAPI plugins and unsigned addons if you wish them, and is in the process of setting up its own repository for older FF addons that Mozilla is throwing out... while it's not quite Firefox the way it should be, as it contains the unloved Australis interface, once you add Classic Theme Restorer and maybe a few more addons (Status-4-Evar, Tab Mix Plus), it is really close.

        I haven't tried FF 58 yet, but FF 57 "Quantum" is all of 8% faster than WF 56 in the Speedometer 1.0 benchmark (FF used the 2.0 version of that same benchmark to stake their claim about Firefox being 50% faster than whatever version from way back when).

        Waterfox is the best option for people who don't want to go back as far as Pale Moon, but who regret the Quantum changes in Firefox.

      2. HieronymusBloggs Silver badge

        Re: Bye Bye

        "Version 56 does all that I want or need"

        ...until whatever online banking sites you use stop working with it.

        1. Adrian 4 Silver badge

          Re: Bye Bye

          If one of my banks decides to insist on me using a specific browser, they'll be losing my business a good deal faster than Firefox will.

        2. HieronymusBloggs Silver badge

          Re: Bye Bye

          "...until whatever online banking sites you use stop working with it"

          Not sure why that attracted downvotes. It's a constant source of irritation that no sooner do I get used to a particular browser than it stops working on some sites that I need to use.

          Web developers seemingly can't resist the urge to "fix" things that aren't broken, breaking them for many people in the process. It appears to be some form of fashion statement. Banking sites are among the worst culprits.

      3. Mage Silver badge

        Re: Bye Bye

        I'm on 52 ESR while I figure what to do about all our stuff.

        Mozilla lost the plot even before that, as it needs User Agent Switcher, Classic Theme Restorer and uMatrix. Stuff what should be in it. Also needs loads of settings (inc About:Config) changed.

        They are MENTAL!

        Also BUGS!

      4. jaduncan

        Re: Bye Bye

        You want the Firefox ESR version, since that is pre-Quantum and actually gets security updates.

    4. inmypjs Silver badge

      Re: Bye Bye

      "will trigger an instant uninstall"

      Lol quantum triggered a firefox uninstall before I had even installed it and that was months ago.

      This is just more evidence as I said last time that Mozilla is continuing to fuck itself.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Bye Bye

      > The first ad I see built in to the browser will trigger an instant urinal

      FTFY

    6. Someone Else Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Bye Bye

      Just so long as i can shut the fuckin' thing off....

      Oh? I can't?? Then bye bye....

  5. WonkoTheSane
    Thumb Down

    I _knew_ I was doing the right thing!

    When I update Firefox, I always disable Pocket, as it's a "feature" I. WILL. NEVER. USE!

  6. Smoking Man

    Easy as this:

    about:config

    extensions.pocket.enabled;false

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Easy as this:

      If that doesn't work, I hope changing the DNS addresses for pocket's sites in the config will work, because I like having a BLANK window when I click a new tab. I don't want a list of recent tabs, I don't want a home page and I ABSOLUTELY DO NOT WANT a damn ad!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Easy as this:

        There's an addon for that:

        https://addons.mozilla.org/en-GB/firefox/addon/blank-new-tab

        Working here in Firefox 58. I'd recommend disabling pocket as well, mind.

      2. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: Easy as this:

        Open a new tab, click on the gear icon in the upper-right corner, and set it to show a blank page for new tabs.

        1. DougS Silver badge

          Re: Easy as this:

          I know how to get a blank tab, extensions aren't and have never been needed. What I'm worried about is that the option for a blank tab will disappear, or effectively disappear, if they pollute with ads.

          Exactly how much money does Mozilla really need to operate that they need to consider selling out and eliminating by far the biggest point in their favor over Chrome and IE? I'd wager ads in new tabs that couldn't be disabled would cost them a lot more revenue due to lost users than they could ever hope to gain from the ad revenue. Hopefully they will get a lot of seriously negative reviews in the beta and abandon this stupidity.

    2. Frank Bitterlich
      Mushroom

      Re: Easy as this:

      Doesn't work for me. I can, however, close that "Recommended by Pocket" section - for now. Should it at one point re-open itself or become any more intrusive, then Bye Bye Firefox. You won't see me tinkering with my hosts file just to fight a browser pushing ads on me.

  7. Dwarf Silver badge
    FAIL

    Can’t wait

    I’ve got so much spare time, I just love watching all those slow and pointless adverts for things I’m not interested in - ever.

    Seioulsly. No. Don’t even think about it. Uninstalls are easy.

  8. Milton Silver badge

    Just: No.

    IMHO Firefox is perhaps the least awful browser out there for desktop use (ok, yeah, it's plain nasty on Android) and I use it a lot with few complaints. No doubt a solid add-on will arrive soon so that I can benefit from the new Quantum renderer without having to suffer the stupid fad-driven UI redesign (can you really not just leave it alone, and concentrate on the nuts and bolts, Mozilla?) In the meantime, the 52.6ESR will do fine.

    Which is my way of saying I'd happily just pay a few quid now and then for the use of something like Firefox that does what I need with reasonable efficiency, security and regard for my privacy. When Wikipedia holds its hand out, I sometimes make a contribution and can't see why Firefox should be any different. (Though disclosures about Wikipedia staff payouts a few months ago closed the wallet for a while, I admit.)

    What I absolutely do not want to see, and will actively avoid, is a browser which starts to intrude content I have not asked for. Internet advertising is almost universally agreed to be unspeakable drivel—if ever "By idiots, for idiots" had meaning, it's surely in the garbage that manures our eyeballs as we surf—and I strongly suspect its reputation is irretrievably blown. Even Google seems to struggle ever harder to convince anyone that ads actually work.

    So please do not ask me to step in the way of even more of the same ghastly shit.

    Instead, remind me what a great service and product you are providing—by providing a great service and product, not with a bunch of transparent marketing-BS propaganda—and then ask me nicely for some money.

  9. Ilgaz

    Like that stupid electric vehicle of Sinclair

    I think acquisition of Pocket, not admitting it was wrong and integrating it with Firefox will have similar effect of Sinclair C5.

  10. No Quarter

    Recommended by Pocket

    They are already doing it on my Firefox Beta ap on my phone. The three links are not relevant to me and are from the wrong country. But I am stuck with them if I want to use that browser.

    Not looking forward to it on my PC.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Recommended by Pocket

      I think you can disable them through the settings somehow.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Recommended by Pocket

      Settings > General > Home > Top Sites > Recommended by Pocket.

      1. Dwarf Silver badge

        Re: Recommended by Pocket

        But you shouldn't need to disable it, it should not be there in the first place

    3. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge

      Re: Recommended by Pocket

      You can turn them off. I too noticed they rocked up on the mobile app, and like yourself noticed a distinct lack of regional awareness so It got canned using the about:config trick mentioned above.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Recommended by Pocket

      No, that is normal Pocket, those are not adverts. You need to opt in to test the adverts.

  11. Tweetiepooh

    As long as suggestions don't interfere with pinned items in new page tab I wouldn't likely see them anyway. If they do interfere that would not be good.

    1. Glad Im Done with IT

      Pocket? Whats pocket? Since I installed WaterFox I have never seen that POS. Mo$illa is slowly digging its own grave.

  12. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Stop the nowtrage

    Personally, I've already disabled Pocket and run an ad-blocker on all my browsers. I think Mozilla knows that a lot of its users will never like the idea, just like sites like El Reg don't try and force ads down the throats of those that don't want them.

    But we are not everyone. That ads or recommended content are acceptable to many should be obvious. Yes, there are those that don't like it but don't know how to disable it. But there are also plenty of people who are comfortable with ads and this kind of service. A lot of websites are little more than thinly disguised adverts. There's an argument to be had that if something like this works well enough for advertisers, it will move money away from the more intrusive sorts.

    The big issue for us all is the creation of extensive profiles of us by companies and we can't rely on self-regulation for this anyway.

  13. H in The Hague Silver badge

    Just let me pay!

    Firefox, Google, et al: you provide me with useful tools which make me more productive at work. I would be happy to pay for those tools (after all, I also pay for my Internet connection and the leccy that runs my PC). Just don't annoy me by serving ads that don't interest me and which I'll never click. I, and other commentards who have made similar comments, might be in the minority but could provide a fairly steady revenue stream (at the moment you don't get any money from you as we don't click ads).

    And did I mention I'll happily pay for some good e-mail software? How difficult would it be to bring Eudora into the current century (but without any unnecessary whiz-bang stuff)?

    Nurse, where are my pills?!?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Just let me pay!

      "And did I mention I'll happily pay for some good e-mail software? "

      I have used Pegasus email since joining the internet in 1997. My first one-man ISP actually came and installed it for me. Every so often I send the NZ author a donation of GBP50. Last time he sent a nice acknowledgement saying most people don't bother - and those that do usually send only tiny amounts.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    long-term strategy

    Well, fuck you Mozilla, and fuck your Firefox.

    1. Flywheel Silver badge

      Re: long-term strategy

      Check out Waterfox !

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: long-term strategy

        "Check out Waterfox !"

        I am finding that WaterFox in W7 seems to have a quirk that is hard to understand.

        Under W7 I use Oracle VM VirtualBox for experimental Linux FireFox browsing sessions. Each time I start by (full) cloning a master Linux VM - and at the end of the session I delete the cloned version and its files. That gives me a predictable starting base for Linux each time.

        If WaterFox browser was running in W7 while the VM was in existence then WaterFox still appears ok - until I click on it. At that point it gives extremely slow responses or hangs altogether. Only Task Manager can stop it after a few tries. There are also several WaterFox.exe processes that have to be terminated - plus several "wer" Windows error reporting ones. At which point the system is ok again - and WaterFox can be started up again as normal.

      2. Mage Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: Waterfox

        I may try it

        Waterfox Downloads

        Windows macOS Linux Android

        No 32bit though. I have one Linux Netbook 32bit and a W10 Tablet that is 32bit only (Debian can't cope with screen rotation without an extra script and Mint needs 32bit EFI files from Debian, standard Mint is 64 bit EFI only, though legacy BIOS install is 32bit or 64bit). Mad Tablet firmware.

  15. Nick Ryan Silver badge

    It does feel like Firefox are just trying to ruin their browser in every which way they can.

    Adverts? **** off. They are the singularly most detested parts of the web and they want to foist them onto "a few" (hahaha) users? Nothing more than product suicide, even Google don't do that in Chrome. Microsoft are stupid enough and have enough of a monopoly to do it in W10, but MS do seem to have their foot-gun firmly warmed up.

  16. Wolfclaw Silver badge
    WTF?

    Looks like I will have to use a fork-ing Firefox replacement !

  17. Tigra 07 Silver badge
    Facepalm

    The only Ad i'll tolerate from Firefox is Clippy (for nostalgia reasons). Any other Ads can fuck right off.

  18. handleoclast Silver badge

    Firefox must die

    Seriously, it's the only way. They persist with these twuntish ideas. Pocket. The hard-wired list of web sites that show up when I start to type a URL - sites I never visit yet remain at the top of the list. Etc. The UI that gets shittier and less usable with every major release. Now this.

    Firefox has to die. A mass exodus that leaves it dead. They occasionally revert some of the really execrable ideas when enough people stop using it, but then they come up with even stupider ideas. Firefox must die pour encourager les autres. Ideally, the manglement and marketroids who come up with these ideas and the coders who implement them must all be branded as pariahs, never to be employed in IT ever again. If possible, those sanctions should persist even unto the seventh generation.

    If Firefox get away with this shit then others will do it too. Firefox must die.

    1. PhilBuk

      Re: Firefox must die

      Yep, merge them with the Gnome 3 developers. They can all go together in a deep mire of bad ideas.

      Phil.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    At least you can just turn Pocket off, unlike Chrome. If you have a Mozilla account Pocket is entirely superfluous anyway.

  20. SVV Silver badge

    oh dearie me...

    "not just a way to see if it can make some cash but its own contribution towards making web ads better."

    Trying to make web ads better is like trying to make dog shit tastier.

    app.update.auto set to false will stop you ever being upgraded to this, or any of the other stuff thety foist on you these days in the name of "improving your user experience".

  21. imanidiot Silver badge

    It's almost like

    Firefox is determined to drive away every single user they have. No user ever said: You know what I need in my browsing? More adds, especially adds in the browser itself!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It's almost like

      *ads* not *adds*

  22. Bucky 2

    Accountability

    The test of the ad delivery system will be how Mozilla behaves if there is a dispute about the content of one of its ads. You know, porn, booze, violence, or malware.

    Will it own the problem, or will it scratch its head and say, "Gee, we're sorry, but nobody has any real control over this thing?"

  23. nautica
    Go

    Now's the time to be a pioneer, again.

    Remember those 'sideays' glances when you told people your browser was something new called 'Firefox'?

    Midori is looking really great right now!

  24. Mage Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Idiots!

    MORONS!

    FIX THE DAMN BUGS ALREADY.

    Put back a GUI THAT SIMPLY USES THE DESKTOP THEME.

    STOP ADDING STUPID STUFF NO-ONE WANTS!

    Stop copying Google.

    NO MODERN DESIGN!

    Or soon no-one will use Firefox.

  25. JohnFen Silver badge

    Nope

    "Mozilla reckons the fact all its products are open source will help give users confidence that their privacy has been respected and protected"

    Mozilla reckons incorrectly, at least as far as I'm concerned.

  26. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Nooooooooooooo

    oooooooooooooooooooo

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Final Nail In Coffin!

    Vivaldi / Brave / Palemoon...

    Any comments on those???

    1. hellwig Silver badge

      Re: Final Nail In Coffin!

      Yeah, What are they? JK

      What about Midori? Comes loaded on my Linux distros. (whatever I just put on my RPi)

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Market share rapidly heading towards single-digits

    So this is Mozilla's next move? Strange kind of genius...

    Been more articles on Firefox as its share has tanked!

    Nice to see Mozilla learned from the comments below.

    But sadly, no one in charge at Mozilla reads the Reg.

    Linux Mint etc, needs to be rid itself of this turd asap...

    ===

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/12/18/mozilla_mr_robot_firefox_promotion/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/12/06/mozilla_yahoo_search_dispute/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/24/firefox_data_breach_warning_plan/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/15/mozilla_interview/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/10/open_source_insider_firefox_57/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/06/firefox_bookmark_saving_addon_loses_bookmarks/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/11/10/open_source_insider_firefox_57/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/10/30/firefox_canvas_privacy_tor/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/10/09/mozilla_tests_cliqz_in_germany/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/08/24/mozilla_considers_move_to_opt_out_telemetry_for_firefox/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/07/25/new_war_for_mozilla/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/06/14/firefox_54_multiple_content_processes_debut/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2016/11/17/mozilla_launches_privacy_edition_firefox_for_ios/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2016/11/16/firefox_hits_version_50/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2015/05/12/that_drm_support_in_firefox_you_never_asked_for_its_here/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2014/11/20/yahoo_becomes_default_firefox_search_in_us/

    https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2014/03/10/mozilla_investigates_fee_for_firefox_dell_claims/

    1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

      Re: Market share rapidly heading towards single-digits

      You realise all your links are truncated because you didn't linkify them?

  29. Orv Silver badge

    *gets out the popcorn*

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Glad to have jumped off the Mozilla Firefox train wreck long ago.

    Now I'm using a browser using a forked version of Chromium, minus Google's 'innovations'.

    Yandex or Advanced Chrome, the equivalent of what Pale Moon and Waterfox are to Firefox.

    What kept me lingering on with Firefox was the Downloadhelper add-on. It's no longer necessary as you can easily download a Youtube, Facebook or Twitter video via special websites e.g. Keepvid.

    I tried Firefox Quantum... didn't like it. So long and thanks for the memories. Still have an installation of Seamonkey... the progenitor of Firefox.

    1. handleoclast Silver badge

      Re: Glad to have jumped off the Mozilla Firefox train wreck long ago.

      @AC

      What kept me lingering on with Firefox was the Downloadhelper add-on. It's no longer necessary as you can easily download a Youtube, Facebook or Twitter video via special websites e.g. Keepvid.

      I got fed up with Keepvid trying various methods to get me to pay for the improved version (usually not letting me download at the highest res). And of it regularly stopping working with various sites for a few days. And various other annoyances.

      Eventually I installed youtube-dl, and I'm very pleased with it. It's a command-line tool, but available in Linux, Mac OS X and Windows flavours. Works with most of the popular video sites. I've heard it even works with PornHub (not that I'd know).

      There's also a cross-platform GUI for it, but I've never tried it.

  31. JWLong

    ............ is like trying to make dog shit tastier.

    @SVV

    You owe me a keyboard................

  32. stephanh Silver badge

    history repeats itself

    The first time as tragedy, the second as farce.

    https://www.cnet.com/news/mozilla-officially-kicks-off-ads-in-firefox/

  33. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    So that's the end of Firefox then. RIP

    So that's how they reward all those who have contributed to FF for over a decade? Scummy types.

  34. hnwombat

    It's open source. Rip the fucking code out and build. Problem fixed.

    To make it a little easier long term, save the change as a patch, apply to future releases.

    May have to be tweaked occasionally, but this is one of the nice things about open source.

    That said, I may switch to a fork myself. We'll see. Certainly not planning to watch any stupid ads.

  35. i1ya

    I'm sure Firefox users are smart enough to turn it off

    Also, while this step is quite controversial, I'm sure community will react loudly enough to be heard by Mozilla. At least they (in my opinion) listen to their users a bit more often than other browsers' vendors.

    That being said, I'm sure at least some people won't mind opt-in sponsored content. I deliberately turn off adblocker for websites that I want to support (including this one), and some people may choose to support Mozilla in such way.

    1. fidodogbreath Silver badge

      Re: I'm sure Firefox users are smart enough to turn it off

      about:config

      extensions.pocket.enabled > false

  36. Kev99 Bronze badge

    I wonder if having the "New tab opens home page" add-on prevents this type of bovine excrement? I don't see any ads when I open a new tab, just my home page.

  37. anoco

    If you still use FF, this won't stop you.

    After all they have done to alienate their Original Base (OB ©), they know that if you haven't left by now, you'll never leave.

    They have methodically transformed FF from being the king of customization to the 'my way or the highway' browser.

    So if you're upset that they're going to be spamming you. Be upset with yourself for being too lazy to walk away when they were slowly shoving that furry tail plug up there. Now it's all the way in...

    1. stephanh Silver badge

      Re: If you still use FF, this won't stop you.

      Well, being a Firefox user is a bit like riding a bull in a rodeo. From time to time the beast is making an unexpected move to throw you off, you just need to hang in there.

      Everyday now I expect to see the message "Congratulations, you are the last user left!"

  38. Spazturtle Silver badge

    Skip the blog spam and read the original source.

    Read the original article on the Mozilla blog.

    1) This only affects people who use Pocket, if you don't use pocket you are not affected.

    2) No data is sent to any servers, a list of sponsored articles is downloaded and is compared locally to your browser history.

    3) The sponsored articles are clearly marked.

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