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# **Cloud of Shame** Forbes (forbes.com)
![Forbes doorslam](doorslam.jpg)
<blockquote style='font-size: 1.5em; text-align:left;'>“Every year, one human life worth of time – over 87 years – is lost to one ‘annoying’ doorslam on one site.”</blockquote>
> “Forbes is an American business magazine.” – [Source](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forbes)
![Forbes doorslam](doorslam.jpg)
## A Waste of Human Life
When you – a human being – visit Forbes.com, you get [a doorslam](http://www.creativebloq.com/mobile/web-needs-fewer-doorslams-and-more-personality-5135640).
<blockquote style='font-size: 1.5em; text-align:left;'>“Every year, one human life worth of time – over 87 years – is lost to one ‘annoying’ doorslam on one site.”</blockquote>
In ad-industry parlance, this is an ‘interstitial’; a modal screen that blocks your progress and displays an advertisement. To rub salt on the wound, Forbes adds a three-second count down to it. Only after the countdown is complete can you click a button to proceed to the actual site.
When you, as a human being, visit Forbes.com, you get [a doorslam](http://www.creativebloq.com/mobile/web-needs-fewer-doorslams-and-more-personality-5135640). In ad-industry parlance, this is an ‘interstitial’ – a modal screen that blocks your progress and displays an advertisement. To rub salt on the wound, Forbes added a three-second count down to theirs. Only after the countdown is complete does a button appear that you can press to proceed to the site itself.
Let’s be conservative and say that the whole malarkey takes about five seconds to get through if you have lightning fast reflexes. That’s not that bad, is it? And, once you’ve been subjected to it, you don’t see it again until the next day.
Let’s be conservative here and say that the whole malarkey takes about five seconds for you to get through if you have lightning fast reflexes. That’s not that bad, is it? And, once you’ve been subjected to it, you don’t see it again until the next day.
![Forbes’s visitor statistics](stats.jpg)
### What’s 5 seconds anyway?
......@@ -18,11 +18,9 @@ So what’s the big deal? 5 seconds isn’t that bad, is it? Why is Forbes this
Here’s why: by their own admission, Forbes gets 46 million unique visitors to their site every month.
![Forbes’s visitor statistics](stats.jpg)
Let’s be hugely conservative again and say that each one of those visitors only visits the site once and thus gets exposed to the 5-second delay only once a month. Even so, those five seconds add up to mean that humankind cumulatively loses over 7 years of human life every month because of that one interstitial on Forbes.
Let’s be conservative again. Let’s say that each one of those visitors visits the site just once a month. Even so, those five seconds quickly add up to over 7 years of human life wasted each month. Because of one interstitial. Just on Forbes.com.
In other words, **every year, one human life worth of time – over 87 years – is lost to one ‘annoying’ doorslam on one site.**
In other words, **every year, one human life’s worth of time – over 87 years – is lost to oxne ‘annoying’ doorslam on one site.**
<div style='padding: 24px; padding-bottom: 12px; border-radius: 12px; background-color: #f3f3f3; margin-top: 24px; margin-bottom: 24px;'>
<p style='border-bottom: 1px solid lightgrey;'>46,000,000 people × 5 seconds = 230,000,000 seconds</p>
......@@ -32,31 +30,35 @@ In other words, **every year, one human life worth of time – over 87 years –
<p>2,662 days ÷ 365 days = <span style='font-weight: bold; border-bottom: 3px double #ababab;'>7.3 years</span></p>
</div>
We must start talking about the externalities of the behavioural advertising industry. And we must start regulating them. One of those externalities is human time wasted. The unit is lifetimes lost per year.
It‘s time we started taking the externalities of the behavioural advertising industry seriously. One of those externalities is human time wasted. The unit is lifetimes lost per year.
But don’t worry, because everything we’ve just said only applies to you if you’re a human being. If you’re a robot, things are much better.
But don’t worry, because everything you’ve just read only applies to you if you’re a human being. If you’re a robot, you get a much better experience.
### VIP lane: robots only
If you want to regain your 5 seconds, all you have to do is to pretend that you’re a robot. To skip the doorslam, the easiest thing you can do is to set your browser’s user agent to the user agent used by the Googlebot:
If you want to regain your lost 5 seconds, all you have to do is to pretend that you’re a robot. The easiest way to skip Forbes’s doorslam is to set your browser’s user agent to pretend that it’s the Googlebot:
```
Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html)
```
And, boom!
<p><code>Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html)</code></p>
“Why hello, Mr. Googlebot, right this way, sir… let us take you directly to the content.”
And, boom – right this way, sir – you get shown directly to the content. No doorslam, no ad, no pithy quote, no three-second countdown.
No doorslam, no ad, no pithy quote, no three-second countdown. No sir, that crap’s just for the lowly humans.
![What Google sees](what-google-sees.jpg)
> What Google sees: the Googlebot gets shown directly to the content. The doorslam is purely for human beings.
> What Google sees: the Googlebot gets shown directly to the content.
And if you think all this is bad, it’s actually not as bad as it was before.
And if you think all this is bad, it was actually worse before.
Forbes used to detect tracker blockers like Better and block you from proceeding past their doorslam unless you turned them off.
Forbes used to detect tracker blockers like Better and block them so you couldn’t get past their doorslam unless you stopped protecting yourself from trackers and malvertising. So people did. And what happened? [They got served malware](http://www.extremetech.com/internet/220696-forbes-forces-readers-to-turn-off-ad-blockers-promptly-serves-malware).
![Forbes’s blocker blocker which resulted in people getting infected with malware](blocker-blocker.jpg)
So people started turning off their tracker and ad blockers and stopped protecting themselves. And what happened? [They got served malware](http://www.extremetech.com/internet/220696-forbes-forces-readers-to-turn-off-ad-blockers-promptly-serves-malware).
While Forbes no longer appears to be blocking content blockers, [Wired](/sites/wired.com) still does. (Note: [Better blocks Wired’s blocker blocker]((/sites/wired.com)).
While Forbes no longer appears to be blocking content blockers, [Wired](/sites/wired.com) still does. (Note: [Better blocks Wired’s blocker blocker](/sites/wired.com)).
Is it a coincidence that both Forbes and Wired take a similar approach to tracker blockers? No. The companies behind both publications are members of the [Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB)](/sites/iab.com), the trade association for the behavioural advertising industry. Forcing people to turn off their tracker blockers and stop protecting themselves on the web is part of [the standard policy called DEAL](/sites/iab.com) that the IAB recommends publishers to implement.
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