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Nightspore

Google's Great Chrome Gamble

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Nightspore

Google have recently announced that they will be phasing out the webRequest API and replacing it with declarativeNetRequest API on the Chromium browser. Their excuse is that it was intended to help improve the end-user browsing experience.

 

Chromium is the open source browser on which Google Chrome is based on.  It utilises the Blink rendering engine which itself is a fork of the WebKit engine used in browsers like Safari, Epiphany, Gnome Web, Maxthon, Konqueror and the like. WebKit is popular with Unix based operating systems such as FreeBSD, macOS and Linux.

 

Google Chrome and Chromium form the base for many popular browsers such as Vivaldi, Opera, Brave, Yandex and Comodo Dragon. 

 

The upshot of the API (application programming interface ) change is that it will basically render most adblockers and security extensions such as Ghostery useless. 

 

So the 'Big G' basically wants to take the choice away from Chrome users on whether they can use an adblocker or not. 

 

Fortunately this won't affect browsers not using the Blink engine. Some browser distributions, such as Opera, also won't be affected as although it uses Blink Opera has its own internal adblocker.

 

Google have tried to maintain that they are only doing this to help the end user. Pull the other one Google, it has bells on it!

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Daz Type-R

Using a spare Raspberry Pi I have knocking about I was contemplating setting up Pi-Hole, just wondering if that will still work now?

 

Suppose it will as it is blocking ads at the network level and not in the browser? 

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Nightspore

More Googleballs 

 

https://gizmodo.com/google-no-of-course-were-not-slowly-killing-ad-block-1835495590

 

“There’s been a lot of confusion and misconception around both the motivations and implications of this change, including speculation that these changes were designed to prevent or weaken ad blockers,” Google writes in a separate blog detailing the differences between the two APIs. “This is absolutely not the goal. In fact, this change is meant to give developers a way to create safer and more performant ad blockers.” op cit

 

At least on the surface, this looks like a good thing. But there are a few niggling details that call that into question. Back in January, the Register reported that Adblock Plus and similar plugins relying on basic filtering would still be able to function, while more sophisticated ones like uBlock Origin and uMatrix would be completely borked. The site also noted that well, Google had conveniently paid Adblock Plus to let their own ads pass unblocked in the software. In a statement, Ghostery, another popular adblocker, pointed out the Declarative Net Request API was limited, and that it wouldn’t be possible to “modify or kill potentially dangerous or privacy-invading requests.” op cit

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