I hate ads.

On Firefox I use uMatrix, uBlock Origin, Privacy Badger and Ghostery. Overkill? Maybe but I don’t care.

Ads on mobile I hate even more. But now? Blokada to the rescue.
It’s free.
It’s open source.
It’s Android only.
And it works.

Highly recommended.

John Peel and censorship

There was a conversation in a work Slack channel about memories we have when significant events happen. Reagan being shot, 9/11, Mandela’s release, Diana. I remembered that I’d posted when John Peel died – this was pre-Twitter – so I thought I’d find the post.

Into Bing I go. No result
I try DDG. No result.
As a last attempt, I try Google
site:romanticrobot.net john peel
and I STILL see no result.

Weird.

But I do see this:
Some results may have been removed under data protection law in Europe. Learn more

So for some weird reason my post here – http://romanticrobot.net/2004/10/26/rip-john-peel/ – does not appear in search engines.

Odd.

It’s hardly controversial, is it.

Snoonet & PIA

Statement today from Private Internet Access:

Private Internet Access is honored to announce a groundbreaking partnership with Snoonet. As a long time supporter of Internet Relay Chat (IRC), Snoonet is a natural addition to Private Internet Access’s yearly donation efforts.

Snoonet is a true Internet community platform with a mission in which we can proudly stand with in solidarity. Society and communication are important and nowhere is that more apparent than online. We share this world together. We share interests together. Let’s as a world commit our efforts to making community better. We’re in this together.


We’re in this together.
Really?

what the fuck? rdv was logging the entire network for a month?
pastebin

rdv owns Snoonet.

So while you might trust PIA certainly don’t trust what passes for reddit’s IRC channel.

Google has my fingerprint

Indiegala.com uses the new reCAPTCHA from Google.
If I login there using Safari (for the first time on that site) I get the ‘Click to show you are not a robot” and when I do I get logged in straight away.
If I login using Chromium when I tick the box I get shown an image matching task as I posted about here.
If I login using Firefox I don’t even get the chance to click anything and I am shown a very distorted couple of words and everything I enter is always wrong. So then I get shown some code to copy as I posted about here.
I clear cookies and all saved data in each browser when it closes so this behaviour by Google has to come down to 2 options as I see it.

  1. Google are using some sort of super cookie / evercookie.
  2. Google have fingerprinted my browser.

According to Panopticlick

Your browser fingerprint appears to be unique among the 5,186,229 tested so far.

Currently, we estimate that your browser has a fingerprint that conveys at least 22.31 bits of identifying information

Looks like disabling javascript could be the way to go – hello NoScript.
Will also try blocking Google fonts/ajax.
And this is on top of uBlock, Privacy Badger and Ghostery.

Google are part of the problem. They are not part of any solution.

Google. Again.

A long time ago there was a comment spam plugin which showed images. It was something like “Click the kittens to prove you are not a spambot”. It failed.
google
I think Google missed that bit. The failure bit.

Replace irritants

There is a particular feminist whose views irritate the hell out of me. I don’t now read anything she writes but I do have to see her name when using certain sites I frequent. That alone irritates me. So I was delighted to find this Firefox extension – FoxReplace – because now instead of her name I see the term I have chosen to display. She would hate it but I love it. Makes my browsing so much nicer.

Google says I am a spammer

Reading this article on Google’s new CAPTCHA – and it’s associated privacy concerns and I see that very sadly it is now a required element to register at wordpress.org.
Since it started it has set me as a spammer. How so? I just tried to register a new account at wordpress.org and I entered the captcha text perfectly. It should have said I was not a robot but instead it shows me this:
spammer

It’s been the same since last December and I wait to see what happens when BT cycle my IP address. I am 100% sure Google will still say I am a spammer.