The Web is pretty great with Javascript turned off

Firefox and Chrome are sure a lot faster and more stable with JavaScript (mostly) off and Flash completely gone.

On this site I’ve just got and allowed, and everything seems to work just fine including the commenting.

One thing you really notice is that pretty much every single page on the web wants to run - you’re really being tracked everywhere.


I find the tracker and ad-blockers useful, Noscript/turning off JS less so…so many comment, gallery and submit forms use JS, JQuery etc.

I’d love a plugin or way of blocking all those annoying Opt-In popups - you know ‘Email to subscribe!’ or ‘Did you enjoy this article? YES/NO’ type things as you scroll to the end, usually covering the last bit of what you are reading…and completely lethal on mobile as of course they make the close button tiny. Aaaargh!

Can’t block them since they are actually in-page DHTML/JS/CSS, not true window popups, but irritating.


I run with JS blocked by default in NoScript, with a few domains whitelisted (including, as described above, BB and discourse, allowing me to type this!). It’s mostly pretty great.

Sometimes I have to make exceptions for a one-time site visit, then I have to judge and decide. If I hit a page that’s completely blank without JS (a lot of those are links from Hacker News, so-called “single-page sites”, people showing off their JS package skilz) I just close the tab and move on.

I think I wish BB used a subdomain of for their discourse material, like rather than just plain, so I didn’t have to allow discourse globally. I guess I could look into Request Policy; I have the impression it’s for handling this kind of thing.

(Also: just from a user perspective, I think Discourse rocks.)


By delivering content, obviously. The actual question is “Why does coding sites that inconvenience and annoy the end-user benefit the content-deliverer?” because all of the ills of JS are intentional decisions on their part, not some inherent and inescapable condition of it being used.

1 Like

DM works fine without JS except that you can’t read the comments or add any. And it runs a lot faster.

But…why would I want to read the Daily Heil in the first place?


Define “sites” because a lot of sites serve part of their content from a variety of machines. You can’t rely on all traffic belonging to even a single site to be coming from one server or even domain.

Well, there’s your problem, Klint. You’re running Chrome. :smile:


You say that like it’s a bad thing.


The NY Times is one of those - no JS, no paywall. I keep thinking I should sign up and throw them some money in response to their weekly pleadings, but sheesh.

Exactly. CDNs are a good thing, people.

I don’t have any other add-ons that should have any impact (unless HTTPS Everywhere or AdBlocker is doing something wonky). I often notice that if I manually allow all the individual scripts on a page, when it reloads there are a whole new batch of scripts (that when I allow them, load a third group of scripts, etc. - what a mess), so I have to wonder if scripts are loading other scripts (etc.) until it hits something somehow not covered by “allow all scripts.”

I wonder how many paywalls I’ve gone right through without being aware of them? I do notice a number of papers/magazines that require scripts to get to the content, though - with scripts turned off, you get stuck at some interstitial page.

[quote=“peppy, post:19, topic:69438, full:true”]
The day I realized I could use Adblock to remove the “Trending” feature on Facebook was a good day.
[/quote]The day I removed myself from facebook was a great day.


Before you make it, consider Pale Moon instead, a fork from Firefox, which keeps the old customisable interface from before it was spoiled for tablets, plus some other nice differences.

They can be, but you need to ask. The user specifies what data they need, and where they navigate to.

Uhm. No.

Pale Moon is for knee jerk folks who hate modern browser interfaces and want a browser that is ancient code + some security fixes (not all) until the end of time. You’d be better served by the current version of Firefox or Chrome. Pale Moon has to hand port any current security fixes to a code base that gets more crufty with every Firefox release away from it.


I have enough hate for poxy modern interfaces that don’t do what I want them to that I’m prepared to put up with some pretty damn crufty cruft behind the scenes.

Are you willing to put up with less security and a codebase with a single developer supporting it? I’m not.

Pale Moon is, very roughly, analogous to ESR Firefox releases, which are not as fully supported as mainline Firefox, due to stability and deltas in the codebase making it difficult to backport fixes.

It’s the red-headed stepchild of Firefox, in my personal opinion, and not something I’d recommend to people whom I wanted to be secure.


“Oops! Gmail won’t work because JavaScript is disabled in your web browser.”

or twitter or facebook or many commenting systems…

You know, the things most Internet users (non-geeks) actually use.

1 Like