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Ad-blocker blocking websites face legal peril at hands of privacy bods

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3:53 am on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Websites that detect ad-blockers to stop their users from reading webpages could be illegal under European law.

Alexander Hanff, a privacy campaigner and programmer, says he has received a letter from the European Commission confirming that browser-side web scripts that pick out advert blockers access people's personal data (ie: the plugin stored on their computer). Thus, just like you need to give permission to EU websites to access and store your cookies, ad-blocker detectors must ask for permission before probing your browser.


[theregister.co.uk...]
And it just keeps getting more interesting.
7:57 am on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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By the same logic, you'd have to ask permission for probing the browser for feature compatibility. Silly.
9:20 am on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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This seems to come from a privacy campaigner who seems to base his assertions on the existing cookie law.

Reading the comments on the Register page suggests the privacy argument is to do with JavaScript running client side to check for the presence or dimensions of a div that contains an advert. One would assume the same complaint could be made against all JavaScript.
9:59 am on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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He's just cherry-picking for the spotlight; or simply better at PR than programming. Too bad he gets the attention (I get it: ad blocking is a hot topic), though it does highlight once more how technically illiterate the European Commission is.
4:55 pm on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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one person who doesn't know what he's talking about, gets a letter from somebody else who doesn't know what he's talking about, and starts waving it around in the air. that's basically what has happened
6:42 pm on Apr 24, 2016 (gmt 0)

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The privacy mantra will get folks excited (not always in a good way).
 

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