Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 21st May 2017 10:36 UTC
Google

These, in my view, don't go far enough in stating the problem and I feel this needs to be said very clearly: Google's AMP is bad - bad in a potentially web-destroying way. Google AMP is bad news for how the web is built, it's bad news for publishers of credible online content, and it's bad news for consumers of that content. Google AMP is only good for one party: Google. Google, and possibly, purveyors of fake news.

I haven't encountered enough AMP pages in my browsing time to really form an informed opinion on it, but as a matter of principle, I'm against it. At the same time, however, all of us know that modern websites are really, really terrible. It's why so many of us use ad blockers (on top of privacy concerns, of course) - to make the modern web browsing experience bearable. In that sense, AMP serves a similar role.

Simply put: if everyone created news websites and blogs as fast and light as, say, OSNews, we wouldn't need AMP or ad blockers for speed purposes (you might still want an ad blocker for privacy reasons, of course).

On a related note, something funny happened regarding this specific article. Yesterday, John Gruber wrote:

But other than loading fast, AMP sucks. It implements its own scrolling behavior on iOS, which feels unnatural, and even worse, it breaks the decade-old system-wide iOS behavior of being able to tap the status bar to scroll to the top of any scrollable view.

Setting aside the sulphuric irony of a fervent Apple fan crusading for openness, it turns out that AMP is not implementing its own scrolling at all - the AMP team actually found a bug in Safari, reported it to Apple, and then Apple replied with stating they are switching the whole of Safari over to what Gruber perceived as AMP's own scrolling behaviour:

With respect to scrolling: We (AMP team) filed a bug with Apple about that (we didn't implement scrolling ourselves, just use a div with overflow). We asked to make the scroll inertia for that case the same as the normal scrolling.

Apple's response was (surprisingly) to make the default scrolling like the overflow scrolling. So, with the next Safari release all pages will scroll like AMP pages. Hope Gruber is happy then :)

Well, I thought this was entertaining.

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Comment by kurkosdr
by kurkosdr on Sun 21st May 2017 12:35 UTC
kurkosdr
Member since:
2011-04-11

The truly scary thing is that, once enough content is behind AMP and Facebook, companies will start offering "lite" internet deals giving access just to those services. It will start with mobile and then move on to landline, creating more incentive for content to be put behind those services. Then, after some time, proper internet access will be offered as an expensive internet deal for high end users, if at all.

Fortunately, we have Net Neutrality rul...
...
...
D-oh!

Edited 2017-05-21 12:37 UTC

Reply Score: 8

RE: Comment by kurkosdr
by Ford Prefect on Sun 21st May 2017 13:43 UTC in reply to "Comment by kurkosdr"
Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

The truly scary thing is that, once enough content is behind AMP and Facebook, companies will start offering "lite" internet deals giving access just to those services.


You think you are talking about the future, yet you are talking about the present. Have a look at the internet.org initiative by Facebook [1], which in shiny pictures disguises their move to bind the population of emerging countries to their platform.

Exactly the same scheme: Provide a reduced set of the internet that is marked-up as "good enough" (in this case, Facebook) and let the service providers charge for everything else.

[1] https://info.internet.org/en/

Edited 2017-05-21 13:45 UTC

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by kurkosdr
by KLU9 on Sun 21st May 2017 14:15 UTC in reply to "Comment by kurkosdr"
KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

2017: "Remember when an internet connection included USENET access? Those were the days."

2027: "Remember when an internet connection included WWW access? Those were the days."

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by Sauron on Sun 21st May 2017 14:40 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
Sauron Member since:
2005-08-02

2017: "Remember when an internet connection included USENET access? Those were the days."

2027: "Remember when an internet connection included WWW access? Those were the days."


2032: "what's an internet?"

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Comment by kurkosdr
by JLF65 on Sun 21st May 2017 19:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr"
JLF65 Member since:
2005-07-06

Where's the "scary but true" vote? It's sad to see that after we finally made our way away from walled-in internet like AOL that they try to bring that back. I guess eventually EVERY company wishes it owned the internet.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by kurkosdr
by modmans2ndcoming on Fri 26th May 2017 21:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr"
modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

you forgot:

"What's the internet? I just ask my Home assistant, see..."Hey Corlexhome, what is the holocaust?....

Corlexhome: "The holocaust was a lie told by the liberlz that hated truth, justice, and the kek way"

Not that the modern internet world of twitter and facebook it is much better...but it can be much much worse...

Edited 2017-05-26 21:10 UTC

Reply Score: 2

v RE: Comment by kurkosdr
by zlynx on Sun 21st May 2017 23:20 UTC in reply to "Comment by kurkosdr"
RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by kurkosdr on Sun 21st May 2017 23:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
kurkosdr Member since:
2011-04-11

From my point of view the last 20 years has been a never-ending parade of people who want more, more, more but never want to pay for it.

All of you want Gigabit Fiber to your house, but pay the same as 1 Mbps DSL. And it better not be over-subscribed! And it better have access to every server on the Internet at full speed. And I need entirely open server ports, so I can open my own web hosting business on the fiber line for $20/mo.

Yeah...no.

All of the things that people claim they want on their Internet are available, for a price. Pay the extra for the static IPs, the unlimited usage, the open server ports. Get a business line for 3x the home user cost.

Back in the day EVERY dedicated digital line was a business line and cost like it. The oversubscription, data limits and other annoyances we have today are what allow cheap home network links to exist at all.

And when someone wants to provide even cheaper, but more limited network links everyone goes ballistic...because what, people might voluntarily choose to pay less?

It's just like people taking free smart phones that are limited to Facebook only. It's a choice.


I believe access to the whole WWW should be a given baseline, which is what Net Neutrality is about. Everything else you mentioned in your post can be considered as part of the service tier.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by galvanash on Sun 21st May 2017 23:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

From my point of view the last 20 years has been a never-ending parade of people who want more, more, more but never want to pay for it.


That is funny. From my point of view the last 20 years have been ever increasing prices for some of the slowest broadband speeds in the developed world, record setting profit margins posted by almost all major internet providers, repeatedly the worst customer satisfaction of any industry in the US, and constant lobbying by the industry to keep things that way.

They make mountains of money, spend it all to protect their turf, fight tooth and nail to avoid anything resembling upgrading their infrastructure except in a handful of lucrative markets, basically tell you to f*ck off if you don't like it, and if you DO happen to need a service call you better be willing to wait a week and take off a whole afternoon from work to wait for the guy (who doesn't show up half the time).

Yeah, that's the problem. We are a bunch of whiners...

Reply Score: 10

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by weorthe on Mon 22nd May 2017 01:46 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
weorthe Member since:
2005-07-06

All of you want Gigabit Fiber to your house, but pay the same as 1 Mbps DSL.

I pay $70./mo for gigabit fiber to the house (less with bundling), and cheaper tiers are available. No limits, no throttling. It's available to anyone with electric service and discounts are available to low income households.

The company that provides it is so profitable that they are now subsidizing electrical rates (the electric utility owns it).

So cheap fiber to the house is a solved problem in developed countries, at least in cities. Most American cities, however, are saddled with duopolies whose investors require year on year revenue and profit growth and which bribe politicians to stop real competition. My provider wanted to expand to nearby cities, for example, but the legislature made that illegal.

Reply Score: 7

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by Sauron on Mon 22nd May 2017 04:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
Sauron Member since:
2005-08-02

From my point of view the last 20 years has been a never-ending parade of people who want more, more, more but never want to pay for it.


Looks like Trump is here!

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by ahferroin7 on Mon 22nd May 2017 12:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
ahferroin7 Member since:
2015-10-30

You know, I would agree, except that where I live, most of that is insanely over-charged.

Take externally accessible ports for example. It is literally cheaper by almost 80% for me to pay for an internet routable VPS through a third party (Linode, AWS or GCE) and use a VPN to route stuff from there to my home server system than it is to just get things properly routed through my ISP.

The same goes for IPv6 access, which is even more ridiculous.

A business line with both as well as no over-subscription is in fact more than 10x the cost of my home line, and I'm still paying more already for the 'basic' package than most people in any sane first-world country.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by modmans2ndcoming on Fri 26th May 2017 21:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

Americans want what S. Korea and the Netherlands and Sweden and France have.....good access at reasonable prices.

I am all for private companies running the show but it better come with no barrio to entry on infrastructure so competition can flourish and prices can stay low.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by kurkosdr
by Alfman on Mon 22nd May 2017 14:46 UTC in reply to "Comment by kurkosdr"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

kurkosdr,

The truly scary thing is that, once enough content is behind AMP and Facebook, companies will start offering "lite" internet deals giving access just to those services. It will start with mobile and then move on to landline, creating more incentive for content to be put behind those services. Then, after some time, proper internet access will be offered as an expensive internet deal for high end users, if at all.


I am in agreement, however in reading your post I couldn't tell if you realized that this is exactly the model facebook was using to bring "internet" to Indian and African villages.

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/dec/28/mark-zuckerberg-f...


At least in India, serious concerns over net neutrality lead them to scrub facebook's service.

https://www.cnet.com/news/why-india-doesnt-want-free-basics/

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by kurkosdr
by unclefester on Tue 23rd May 2017 08:52 UTC in reply to "Comment by kurkosdr"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

The truly scary thing is that, once enough content is behind AMP and Facebook, companies will start offering "lite" internet deals giving access just to those services. It will start with mobile and then move on to landline, creating more incentive for content to be put behind those services. Then, after some time, proper internet access will be offered as an expensive internet deal for high end users, if at all.

Fortunately, we have Net Neutrality rul...
...
...
D-oh!


The walled garden (AOL, eWorld, Compuserve etc) is a failed model from the past.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kurkosdr
by Alfman on Tue 23rd May 2017 14:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kurkosdr"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

unclefester,

The walled garden (AOL, eWorld, Compuserve etc) is a failed model from the past.


Those failed when consumers had a choice on open computer platforms and internet access. However walled gardens have much better odds in becoming dominant when app/service restrictions make alternatives nonviable. Earlier assumptions may no longer hold true.

All I'm saying is let's be extremely cautious about all-powerful technology companies that keep taking rights away from owners.

Edited 2017-05-23 14:56 UTC

Reply Score: 2

v "Fake News" saga, Take 2
by tidux on Sun 21st May 2017 19:03 UTC
RE: "Fake News" saga, Take 2
by acobar on Sun 21st May 2017 20:08 UTC in reply to ""Fake News" saga, Take 2"
acobar Member since:
2005-11-15

Do you really believe that the representatives on key positions on current Republican party abide in any way to long standing values historically linked to conservative values? At least to me, most of them looks more like vassals to their hyper-rich lords willing to sacrifice any drop of someone else dignity to the sanctified altar of "money and power above all".

I do would like to see a less powerful central government, I do think that the only way we can construct a better society is through dialog and that all forms of radicalism tend to be detrimental in the long run, but I do believe on it because whenever I read about unbalanced and unchecked distribution of power throughout history we see also the worst of human behavior.

Sorry, but current USA "conservatism" has nothing to do with power balance and checks, it is only about more money, more power and keep the top "status quo" well served.

And don't even let me start to talk about the nuts on the "conservative" party that work against science and think that because racism and other forms of prejudice and discrimination were thought to be OK on past they should be OK now.

We have now a campaign in course that is spreading around the world to discredit news. This is truly wrong and dangerous on so many levels, it is inconceivable, intolerable to me.

If you want to fight an idea, prove it to be wrong instead of trying to disqualify the interlocutor. It should the taught in schools. Show me a top Republican doing it, I am all ears.

By the way, I'm not American even though I have relatives there (and as so my interest on USA affairs is high).

Reply Score: 10

RE: "Fake News" saga, Take 2
by StephenBeDoper on Tue 23rd May 2017 23:46 UTC in reply to ""Fake News" saga, Take 2"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Google is so blatantly in the tank for the Democratic party that their voice (Android) and email (GMail) platforms flag Republican Party or Trump Campaign communications as spam even when you've specifically requested them and repeatedly flagged them as not spam upon arrival.


Ever hear the expression "don't attribute to malice that which can be explained by incompetence"? In this case, the "incompetence" appears to be on the part of conservative politicians and/or the third-parties contracted to manage their EMail "marketing."

I can't speak for GMail, but running a mail server in Canada, I've noticed that the crop of milquetoast Trump-wannabees currently running for leadership of our Conservative party tend to run afoul of spam filters (in my case, I relatively stock config of SpamAssassin) more often than promo EMails from the other political parties. And not because of any evident political bias from the people writing SA's default filters: the only "political" filter I've seen triggered is KAM_POLITICS, mainly because of EMails that use the term "liberal(s)" err, liberally. But that filter also looks for EMails that contain the word "conservative(s)," lest you think there's some political bias behind it - it's just that conservative politicians, at least in this neck of the woods, are more prone to using terminology that gets identified as "right vs left"/"culture war" spam.

(Granted, some of that is probably due to the fact that the KAM_POLITICS filter seems to have been written with the US in mind, and doesn't take into account the fact that, at least in Canada, the terms "liberal" and "conservative" are more often used as proper nouns to refer to the respective Liberal and Conservative political parties, rather than characterizations/slurs referring to general ideologies. It also seems to be skewed by which party currently holds power - when the Conservatives were in power, most of the EMails from Liberal politicians referred to them heavily and were subsequently caught by the same filters.)

Otherwise, the EMails tend to get flagged as spam for more mundane reasons - E.g. campaign EMails from Brad "I'm totally not a bigot, but I'll just mention at every opportunity that I won't participate in gay pride parades" Trost tend to get flagged because of the filters "KAM_REALLYHUGEIMGSRC" (RAW: Spam with image tags with ridiculously huge http urls) and "LONG_HEX_URI" (Very long purely hexadecimal URI). That, and the fact that their EMails usually a thinly veiled lead-up to asking for donations, so they often run afoul of "e-begging" filters.


After the "fake news" memetic weapon got turned around on the Left


Ahem... "turned around" seems like an incredibly generous description - because all of the examples I've seen could be taught to university students as object lessons on the fallacy of False Equivalence. In other words, people mindlessly equating thr Washington Post or NYT with Breitbart - failing to recognize that there's a world of difference between legitimate news organizations that may have political leanings/sensational slant... and organizations that regularly publish actual, (un)factual fake news (read: falsified and/or completely unsubstantiated - see also: Pizzagate).

It's no different from creationists who claim that "evolutionism" is a "religion." Back in the Usenet days, we used to derisively refer to that type of retort as an "IKYABWAI" ("I Know You Are But What Am I"). Or as my grandparents used to say: "Monkey see, monkey do."

Reply Score: 2

AMP is a disaster
by leos on Mon 22nd May 2017 04:58 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

AMP needs to go immediately. I stopped using google on the phone because of the abomination that is AMP. Gruber is 100% correct on this front.

If you site is slow, make it fast. Don't make some bastardized "lite" version of the site that loads quickly but then any complex action redirects to the full site and causes a refresh. you've doubled your testing surface for no gain whatsoever, except that the cancer of google is promoting AMP pages and if you don't want to get dropped off the first page of results you have to bow to their will.

Reply Score: 2

RE: AMP is a disaster
by whartung on Mon 22nd May 2017 21:57 UTC in reply to "AMP is a disaster"
whartung Member since:
2005-07-06

AMP needs to go immediately. I stopped using google on the phone because of the abomination that is AMP. Gruber is 100% correct on this front.


Curiously, my first tab on my iPhone has been anchored at news.google.com for probably at least 2 years. I don't use apps in general for stuff like this, and it usually a presentable summary of Stuff of the Day.

Currently, it's a simply scrolling view with a small picture, a headline and a bit of text, broken in to categories.

When I click on a story, it opens a new tab. If I tap on the top of my screen, it scroll all the way up like any other web page. Far as I can tell, it's just a web page.

But a few months ago, it was AMP everywhere. Specifically, if you clicked on a AMP story, it would scroll left, and open the story "locally". The entire the was had a variety of behaviors, and its as generally awful and finicky. The whole view was obviously synthetic (so you couldn't scroll to the top), it would let you scroll to the side (which was messy).

Now, for the time being, that's all gone. It's essentially a prettied up RSS feed right now, and I'm happy.

Reply Score: 2

MightyPenguin
Member since:
2005-11-18

Hate shilling for Brave browser, but it really is an awesome way to combine crypto-currency, privacy and a way to voluntarily pay content produces. Micropayments. All that good stuff.

Reply Score: 2

sydbarrett74 Member since:
2007-07-24

I don't consider it shilling. Anything that breaks the Google Chrome monoculture is good, in my book. Brave has a promising mix of features. I also like Vivaldi.

Edited 2017-05-26 09:35 UTC

Reply Score: 1

modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

I wish Vivaldi would get on with an android version of the browser

Reply Score: 2

modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

I use brave on Android. Where are the features you speak of? I care mostly about the add blocking and Chromium on Android so I haven't bothered looking.

Reply Score: 2

The WWW as glorified cable television
by sydbarrett74 on Fri 26th May 2017 09:32 UTC
sydbarrett74
Member since:
2007-07-24

Let's face it. Tim Berners-Lee's original vision of the WWW as a decentralised system where users would produce and consume content in roughly equal measure has failed. The Web is now a glorified 21st-century form of walled-garden cable television with a few very massive players and mostly passive users. Advertising and tracking have caused most websites to be slower than molasses in the Antarctic. Why should I have to download tens of megabytes of Javascript rubbish and poorly-generated CSS files in order to view even the simplest sites?

Edited 2017-05-26 09:32 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Gruber is an idiot
by modmans2ndcoming on Fri 26th May 2017 21:03 UTC
modmans2ndcoming
Member since:
2005-11-09

AMP isn't bad, nor does it need to die. It needs to be rolled into W3C and turned into a proper web standard!

I love AMP articles! I love Facebook Instance Articles! I love them both so much than I want a standard!

Reply Score: 2