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Month: June 2017

I really hate web ads

I really hate web ads

breitbart article

I do.  I really, really hate web ads – the kind of ads you see on web pages.  I’ve been using the Web regularly since 1996, so I’ve seen all kinds of ads.  First there were banner ads, and then pop up ads, and then noisy Flash ads, and then double-underlined text links within a page’s text that, upon hovering the cursor over it, would display information.  Then they moved to full-page hijacking, square banners in the middle of pages, giant banners that briefly take over the screen and then move away after a few seconds, and pop-unders.  Then came wretched Taboola and RevContent, fooling you into thinking that stupid bullshit clickbait like “This one weird trick will melt fat in nanoseconds!!!”  These ads are hard to get rid of.

You name it, I’ve seen it.

I have ads on my book review blog, although I haven’t bothered to check if they still work or not.   I don’t mind it if you block the ads on it.  It’s fine.

Blocking ads is really important to me.  Now, I don’t use Windows much anymore.  My two primary computers are a Mac Mini (which I only use as a movie streaming server) and a MacBook Pro (with Retina display).  I also use my grandfather’s 27″ iMac from time to time (it’s very handy for editing my books, as I can compare the notes I’ve written by having them on one side of the screen, with the actual book on the other).  I don’t have to worry as much about malware delivered by bad ads (Mac users can still get viruses, trojans, worms and other malware).  But back in the day, when I used my old Dell laptop regularly…yeah, I had to worry about ads.  My parents ended up with so much garbage on their computers because of malware delivered by ads.

Another reason for me hating ads is that they consume memory and processing power.  If you’re using a mobile device, it’s even worse, because downloading the ads consumes data.  I currently have unlimited everything on my mobile plan, but not everyone does.

I use adblockers on every single device I own – iPhone, iPod Touch, laptop, desktop, Kindle Fire tablet, etc.  I don’t browse the Web on my Playstation 4 even though I could, simply because there’s no adblocker on it.  If a browser does not have adblocking capability I don’t use it.

I don’t trust ads.  At all.  Plus, they’re irritating and far too distracting.  A list of the kinds of ads I hate:

  • Redirect ads.  You see these on piracy sites and other sites of ill-repute.  Encyclopedia Dramatica is a hilarious site, but I don’t like going there because of the horrible ads (and the hijack ads on that site are often pornographic).  You’ll be at some website, and click a link and you’ll see the intended site for a brief moment, and then you’ll be forcibly redirected to some other website, often a full page ad.
  • Above-the-fold banner ads.  These are like, really big ads that briefly take up half the screen.  They’re often noisy and flashy.  These are also called floating ads.
  • Square ads that appear after every single paragraph.  Sites like Breitbart and Twitchy are notorious for these highly irritating ads.  They’re not that bad, it’s just that I can read a single sentence, then see an ad.  Read another sentence, and see another ad.  It’s ANNOYING.  I use an adblocker on my devices, but on the mobile versions of these sites you can still see caption text saying “advertisement” in a gray font.
  • Ad takeover.  This is usually in the form of the website’s background being turned into an ad.  Kind of hard to block these in adblockers.
  • “Paid Content” or “Sponsored Content.”  This shit is usually delivered by Taboola or RevContent and other similar networks.  A lot of websites use this – they’ll look like they’re part of the web page, but instead of relevant content it’ll be links to stupid garbage like “Why Trump doesn’t talk to Tiffany anymore” or “Katy Perry’s shameful secret that she doesn’t want anyone to know!”  These ads are so hard to get rid of.  I stopped visiting one right-wing blog because these ads kept showing up.
  • Ad links.  I don’t think these show up much anymore, but about a decade ago a lot of websites would install scripts that took certain keywords in their text and turned them into special links that would, upon mouse-over, reveal a special kind of tooltip that essentially served as an ad.  One service was called IntelliTXT. Oh, I hated those ads.
  • Video ads.  I’m not talking about the ads that play before YouTube videos (although I hate those too).  I’m talking about the kind of video ad you’d see while reading an article at CNN or something.  A video might be embedded somewhere on the page, and all of a sudden something will start blaring from your computer speakers.  You won’t know where the hell it’s coming from, until you scroll down and see a noisy video ad playing below the fold, so to speak.  UGH.

Few things, however, will piss me off faster than an adblock blocker.  Sites have now taken to detecting adblockers by determining which ads aren’t loading, and deliver you a message either begging you to add their site to the whitelist or by flat-out keeping you from consuming any content on the site until you disable your adblocker and let in all their shitty ads.

Patheos, a blogging host that is supposedly for faith, has recently implemented such an adblock blocker.  Needless to say, I am not happy.  At all.  I don’t visit that site often – in fact, the only blogs on there that I bother to visit are Bristol Palin’s blog and Stacey Dash’s blog.  Now I can’t look at either because they want to bombard me with annoying, intrusive advertising.

Here’s the kind of ads I can deal with.  Banner ad at the very top of the screen, banner ad on the far right or far left side of the screen, and banner ad at the bottom of the screen.  That’s it.  Oh, and perhaps a smaller banner in between blog posts if we’re talking about blogs.  And maybe an Amazon search box that allows the owner to make a commission if you buy something through their affiliate link.

Putting a fucking square ad after every damn sentence is annoying.  Putting the same kind of ad after every paragraph is also annoying.  It’s distracting.  People will either stop visiting altogether or will resort to using adblockers.

I couldn’t visit Breitbart without an adblocker.  There’s entirely too many ads on that site and it’ll crash my browser, even on my MacBook, which is kind of old but is still high-end (I bought it in 2013 and it still runs like a champ, although my grandfather’s iMac has a much faster processor).

You remember toolbars?  Seemed like every major website had a friggin toolbar for you to add to Internet Explorer or Firefox.  I’m so glad those are out of vogue now.

Anyway.  I know that a lot of websites rely on these horrible ads for revenue.  I’m lucky because hardly anybody visits this blog, so my bandwith costs are very, very low.

Couldn’t we just have non-animated banner ads at the top and on the sides?  Isn’t that enough?

Excellent example of media bias

Excellent example of media bias

So some insane Bernie Sanders supporter shot a bunch of Republican Congressmen.  Did the media and Hollywood shit bricks like they did when St. Gabrielle Giffords was shot?

Spoiler alert:  NO.

I had to work (and God Almighty, I hate my job with the fire and fury of a billion hot blue stars) so I followed the story as much as I could, given the circumstances, and I noticed a few things.

First, you had to pay attention when reading the initial reports.  None of them mentioned the political affiliation of any of the shooting victims.  Instead, the primary target, Rep. Steve Scalise, was described as the House Majority Whip.  Well, that’s true – he is the House Majority Whip.  But he’s also a Republican.  Only political nerds like me – or informed people, at least, would realize that he was a Republican given that he’s the House Majority Whip.  Which party currently enjoys a comfortable majority in both houses of Congress?  The Republicans.

Second thing I noticed was that the background and motives of the shooter was not discussed at all.  Turns out that some witnesses claimed that the shooter asked around about the political affiliation of the Congressmen who were playing baseball that morning.

In case you didn’t know – early this morning, a lone asshole shot up a bunch of Republican Congressmen at a baseball field.  Members of Congress often like to play baseball with one another. On occasion, the Dems and the Repubs will face off against one another in a friendly game.

So anyway, the third thing I noted was that the idiot Governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, immediately called for more gun control.  This is hardly surprising.  The one thing I do find surprising is how slow St. Gabrielle has been in getting her face out there, calling for all of us to be robbed of our constitutional right to fucking defend ourselves.  But wait, because every idiot actor will be on TV insisting that we all turn our guns in because nobody was ever murdered until guns were invented.

So, fast forward to this afternoon, and it turns out that the shooter was indeed a crazy leftist who wanted to end the Republican party and the Trump presidency.

Now, here’s where we get into the whole media bias thing.  I remember when St. Gabrielle was nearly martyred.  The media literally held Sarah Palin as responsible for the attempted martyring of St. Gabrielle simply because her PAC (political action committee) published a graphic of several congressional districts they felt that should be targeted for a Republican victory – not literal murder.  The media wagged their fingers and wrung their hands in despair over how violent  and angry the Tea Party was.  Oh, and how racist the Tea Party was, and how the shooter was totally some crazed tricorn-hat-wearing Tea Partier hellbent on taking out his racist hatred for St. Obama on some poor innocent Democrat congresswoman, and that Sarah Palin was sending him subliminal commands to kill Democrats on sight via her oh-so-awful PAC graphic.

It was fucking ridiculous.  St. Gabrielle didn’t get to die for the cause, but she was severely injured.  She had to give up her seat and her husband dragged her around, propping her up as a Martyr for Gun Control and poster child victim for Right-Wing Gun Violence.

So yeah, the mainstream media demonized the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, the Republican Party and anyone else that dared to disagree with the gun control lobby and Obama in general as violent monsters who were directly responsible for the attempted assassination of a sitting Congresswoman.  Needless to say, I’m still extremely bitter over that.

Fast forward to today.  The left has been staging violent protests ever since November, 2016.  Hollywood actors have routinely either denigrated Trump and his supporters or have outright called for the assassination of the President and his followers (hello Michael Shannon, you fugly sack of shit – come at me, bro!).  Plenty of Democrat politicians have done the same, one even going so far as to state that the only way they’ll get “change” is if the streets run rivers of red hot Republican blood.

Will the media hold any of these people, including themselves responsible for this hideous climate of hate?

Here’s another spoiler alert:  NO.  Not just no, but FUCK NO.   I mean, sure, they allowed us to wreck the fugly Kathy Griffin’s career over her stupid beheading stunt, but they gotta throw us a bone here and there just to maintain the illusion of fairness.  Kathy Griffin was nothing more than a convenient sacrifice so they can say, “see, we police our own!”  It’s bullshit and nobody with two brain cells to rub together should fall for it.

I apologize for the salty language.  I didn’t want to write profanity-laden screeds on this blog, but I’ve had a really bad day today and this issue makes me so angry.  Thank God some of the people at that baseball field had guns, or else the shooter might have gotten far more people.  Furthermore, he appears to have been a lousy shot, which is good.

So you’re probably wondering who this shitstain actually is.  Well, his name was James T. Hodgkinson, and you can view an archive of his Facebook page here.  As you can see, he’s clearly a leftist.

I’ve included a screenshot below, and I’ve saved the actual archive file, in case it’s ever deleted.

berniebros are psychokillers

If this turns out to not be his, I’ll edit this post.  But it’s probably his, and the guy is dead.  I’m sure another nutcase will step in and pick up where he left off, though, and the media will breathlessly support this person because “hate speech” is violent and people who use it must be brutally murdered, or something, because muh feeeeeelings!!!

People these days are self-absorbed

People these days are self-absorbed

I read this article today, entitled “I bake new neighbors bread to welcome them, and they never say hello to me again” and found it incredibly interesting.

The author is about 70 years old.  I am 35.  If someone had welcomed me to a neighborhood in this fashion, I’d be grateful and flattered but would have probably retreated into my own world.  I know that neighborhoods have been like this in the past, but I have never really experienced it.  In my own childhood, I think my parents borrowed stuff from neighbors only a few times.  I was an Air Force brat, so we moved a lot, and that might have something to do with it.

“I grew up in a community where everyone knew everyone. Neighbors shared their trials and tribulations with each other, and if someone was down on his or her luck, the others came to their rescue and offered support. The USA is no longer that country. We are divided and afraid of one another.

I had hoped that when Barack Obama was elected we would not only continue our healing from sad historical periods (slavery, and the hard times of civil unrest), but our nation would also be united, blessed, and even better, for we are all Americans. Instead, it was further divided. The division is worse, tolerance is a forgotten word, and feelings are hurt over nothing. Shocking as it may be, it appears that people now think it is okay to take other people’s stuff, damage other people’s property, and even hurt other people physically.”

I don’t think we’re afraid of one another as much as people are just simply self-absorbed and intolerant.  We know leftists hate right-wingers with a flaming, blazing passion.  Most right-wingers just don’t want to deal with their ridiculous hatred.  Of course, leftists will whine about how conservatives supposedly hate people that aren’t like them, but that’s bullshit and they know it.  That might have been true when the author of this article was my age, but it isn’t anymore.

To be perfectly honest, thinking that Obama would “unite” the country upon being elected President was incredibly naive.  He was a divisive asshole, and remained so throughout both of his terms.  The left got emboldened and even more hateful, certainly to the point of staging mass riots over losing a Presidential election.

We conservatives and libertarians are not perfect.  We’ve simply lost patience.  We’ve decided to segregate ourselves from crazed feminists and BLM douchebags and environmentalists and socialists and the ANTIFA assholes.

I agree with the author that this is incredibly sad.  We shouldn’t let politics keep us from associating with one another and we certainly shouldn’t let politics keep us from helping one another.  Unfortunately, I am pretty convinced that a leftist would let me die in the street if they knew I was a registered Republican.  I know I can’t count on them for anything.  The only liberals that will ever care about me are my own family members.

Now, the reason why I might come across as unfriendly is because I have social anxiety disorder.  Getting a loaf of bread as a welcome gift would also stress me out.  Would they expect anything in return?  How often would I have to say “hello” or something?  Yes, for me, those are real concerns.  I don’t like being this way.  I get so stressed out over greeting people because of my anxiety (and my self-consciousness).

So anxiety is my excuse for seeming like a self-absorbed person.  However, I don’t know about everyone else, other than this country being incredibly divided over politics.  It’s sad and worrying.  I truly believe that there will be another civil war in my lifetime, and that it’ll be started by the left, because they hate us that much.