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Some common anti non-javascript mechanism websites use

k4ml profile image Kamal Mustafa Updated on ・1 min read

Being using browser with JavaScript disabled by default for years, I noticed few mechanism used by websites to shun away people like me.

1. Using <noscript> tag.

noscript

2. CSS display: none;. While look simple, the challenge here is to find the div which get applied the css. They will try to bury it few levels deep.

css display none

3. Overlay/z-index ? Unfortunately I can't find real example yet. The website I frequently visit no longer using the technique and now I can read the content at pleasure with JavaScript disabled.

css z-index

Using browser with JavaScript disabled allow me to perceive the web a bit different than others commonly see it. For example, this how one of the websites look like:-

astroawani nojs

Most of the time I can get away with all these nojs mechanism by just using the devtools. But for websites who fully use JavaScript to load the content separately, instead of just hiding it, I have to resolve on using my other browser profile with JavaScript enabled.

Discussion

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bgadrian profile image
Adrian B.G.

I hope you tried the following too:

  • driving your car without a steering wheel
  • do not use your credit card, always go to the bank, in person
  • using your phone without a keyboard
  • do not unplug your laptop, ever (from electricity)

All these actions are similar with your default usage (of disabled JS): do not use the mechanism that are meant to improve your UX, and saving you time.

As a side note, how do you track users like you? I mean you are a developer too, so in your projects, how do you find out how many % users have disabled JS? so you know if you need to improve their experience or is not needed to spend time on this (there were 0 visitors).

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Kamal Mustafa Author

I mentioned at the end that I still have separate profile with javascript enabled. It just my default profile has it disabled by default, and enabled only for websites I choose to. And talking about saving time, disabling js proved to save my time a lot. All websites I mentioned above are content based websites. I don't need fancy UI, I just need to read the text.

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Adrian B.G.

And also you get an ad blocker by default :D

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k4ml profile image
Kamal Mustafa Author

Some websites simply redirect you to other page but most I found simply hide the content. How to know? Well, if I noticed it take some time to load, highly likely it has the content and simply hiding it. In this case, I'll try all the tricks above.