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How do I whitelist Fark.com...

...in Adblock Plus

On the bottom left-hand corner of your web browser you should see a small icon that looks like a stop sign with the letters 'ABP' in it.  Click this, and then click 'Disable on fark.com' and that will whitelist Fark in your adblocker.

If you don't see the 'ABP' stop sign, then you probably have that bottom bar hidden.  Go to your View menu (at the top) and click Toolbars and make sure 'Add-on Bar' is checked.  Then you should see the 'ABP' stop sign in the bottom left-hand corner.  


...in DoNotTrackMe

When you click the Do Not Track button in your toolbar, you should have a line that says something like "6 companies tracking me".  If you click the switch on each of those to "Allowed here", that will whitelist those companies just for Fark.


...in Ghostery

Inside Ghostery's Settings panel, click the tab for "Whitelisted Sites".
Add fark.com to that list.
If you have concerns about the number of 3rd party sites showing up in Ghostery's "bubble" list, please see Why do I see so many third-party calls in my Ghostery, DoNotTrackMe, etc
If you have concerns about tracking cookies, please see How do I help Fark make money, but NOT be tracked?


...in avast! Internet Security

avast! provides adblocking in both Chrome and Firefox by default. To disable this feature, see http://www.fark.com/farq/pages/whitelist_in_avast.html


...in NoScript

NoScript makes this a little more complicated. Actually, there's no way (at least that we've been able to determine) to whitelist all ads/scripts for Fark without explicitly listing each one, which is difficult to do since Fark's ad providers partner with other ad networks and so forth, so we don't have a complete list.

However, you can help out a bit by whitelisting a few sites in Noscript. This will show you Google Ads and ads from Federated Media, but that's it. You will see a blank space for any other ad call.

Here are the sites to whitelist inside NoScript

fark.com
googletagservices.com
googleadservices.com
doubleclick.net
googlesyndication.com
fmpub.net

Many of these won't show in your list until you allow the previous one (e.g., you won't be able to allow googleadservices.com until you've allowed googletagservices.com).

Note: This will whitelist those sites (google ads and ads from Federated Media) across the board in NoScript. If you allow ads on, say, CNN.com and they're calling googletagservices.com, it will be whitelisted. If you do not want that behavior, you can restrict these sites further by using NoScript's ABE settings.

Using NoScript's ABE settings to further restrict ads

To do that, open NoScript's Options window, and click the 'Advanced' tab. Then select 'ABE'. On the left-hand side, select 'USER', and paste the following rule into the box:

Site .googletagservices.com .googleadservices.com .doubleclick.net .googlesyndication.com .fmpub.net
Accept ALL from .fark.com .google.com
Accept INCLUSION(SCRIPT) from .doubleclick.net .googlesyndication.com .fmpub.net
Deny

To allow these ad types on another site, just add it after ".google.com"


...in another adblocker

Send us a "Tech question" Farkback and let us know what add-ons/extensions you're running that you think are blocking ads, and we'll help you figure out how to whitelist Fark.


I've whitelisted Fark.com in my adblocker, but I still see the "feed our squirrel" banner

Are you seeing ads on the page along with the "please whitelist us" yellow banner?  If so, please take a screenshot and send in a "Tech question" Farkback.  Tell us you have a screenshot, and we'll ask you for it in our reply. Then you'll be able to attach it to your email response to us.

If you're not seeing ads (in particular, the top ad next to the Fark logo), it's possible you disabled Adblock for us but have another add-on/extension that's causing problems - another adblocker, NoScript, DoNotTrackMe, Ghostery, etc (see the sections on those).  You can also try temporarily disabling all your add-ons except your adblocker and restart your browser and see if you get ads (and not the 'squirrel banner') at that point.

Please make sure you're using the current version your extensions.


Why do I see so many third-party calls in my Ghostery, DoNotTrackMe, etc

We run ads through Google and through Rubicon.  Both do run ads through other 3rd party networks (such as FM, which then can run through others), but both have very strict compliance rules for the networks they work with.  Rubicon also acquired a company called SiteScout that constantly scans our site looking for any form of malware.   This usually happens when our ad networks have problems filling an impression and they pass the impression to their partner networks.

Ghostery has more fine-grained options.  If you View Ghostery Findings and then click Edit Blocking Options, you can check boxes to selectively allow tracking.  Facebook and Google+ doesn't interest us at all.  DoubleClick, Federated Media, Rubicon, and Google Adsense are the ones that show ads.  Crowd Science, Google Analytics, Scorecard Research, and Quantcast are all ones that we use to try to do internal statistics as to how well we're meeting our users needs, and also to show total numbers like number of pageviews and number of unique users to advertisers who might want to give us money.  

How do I help Fark make money, but NOT be tracked? (Lots of info on Ghostery/DoNotTrackMe "trackers")

We've received many Farkbacks from users who've installed Ghostery or DoNotTrackMe (or variations thereof) to prevent advertisers from "tracking them". They want to help Fark stay in business, but they don't want to be tracked by advertisers.

Add-ons like Ghostery and DoNotTrackMe don't just block tracking cookies, they often block any calls to third-party sites (Ghostery calls them '3pes'). These calls don't "track" you at all[1]. They DO often place a "tracking cookie" on your computer to see if you go to another site that also runs that third-party script. However, there's a much easier way to stop advertisers from tracking you - simply block those third-party "tracking cookies" inside your browser.

  • Safari does this by default (and you can check on your Preferences->Privacy tab).
  • In Chrome, just go to your Chrome preferences, go to Settings, scroll down and click 'Show Advanced Settings'.  Then under 'Privacy', click the button for 'Content settings'.  Click the checkbox for "Block third-party cookies and site data."
  • In Firefox, go to your Privacy pane inside your Firefox Preferences, then under the 'History' section select "Use custom settings for history" and make sure the box is NOT checked for "Accept third-party cookies."

If you turn off third-party cookies, then advertisers can't place cookies on your machine, and therefore can't track you.

You can test this for yourself. Each of the major browsers has a way to clear cookies and to list the cookies that have been set. In Firefox, you can "Show Cookies" right next to where you unchecked the box for "Accept third-party cookies". Chrome has a button to see "All cookies and site data..." right near the "Block third-party cookies and site data" checkbox. Safari has a "Details" button on their Privacy tab.

As an experiment, go ahead and whitelist Fark in Ghostery or DNT (you can change your mind later). Now go clear your cookies and reload Fark.com. You'll see a number of third-party scripts getting called (see Why do I see so many third-party calls in my Ghostery, DoNotTrackMe, etc). Now go look at your cookies list again. You'll still only see cookies for fark.com and www.fark.com. When advertisers can't place a cookie on your machine, they can't track you across websites.

NOTE: If you go look at your Fark cookies, you'll see about 10-12. One is a FarkUser cookie, which is the one we use to see if you're logged in or not, and to make sure certain ads (like our video ad on an outbound click) only show up once per day. The other cookies look like '_utma', '_csmv', etc.  These are fark-specific tracking cookies, but are there for a reason.  These are for Google Analytics and Scorecard Research.  We use these for internal statistics, and to aggregate numbers like, "How many users are still using IE7" and "How many unique visitors do we have to our site".  It's very useful information for us to have, and to show our advertisers, but it's never used to target advertising to you (in fact, it can't be used that way - it's technically impossible).  If you don't like this, feel free to block those individually within Ghostery/DNT and it won't track those any more.

For more information, please see:
http://www.truste.com/consumer-privacy/about-oba/#&panel1-1
http://arstechnica.com/business/2010/03/safely-whitelist-your-favorite-sites-and-opt-out-of-tracking/

[1] Caveat: Any time your browser makes any call to any web site, it sends information about your browser and operating system, and your IP, but nothing personally identifiable to you.

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