In a triumph for information freedom, a group of Stanford students has released a Firefox plug-in called myEbayFox. The plug-in blocks all adds on eBay, and allows users to see thumbnails of items as they search, even if the seller hasn’t paid eBay to show thumbnails in its searches. EBay has been working on its own Firefox extension for sometime, called Firefox eBay Edition, but that extension is still in beta, and merely keeps the user logged in and validates that they are at the genuine eBay page, and not a spoof site.
Take heed, young startups. If the information your users want is difficult to access, they will find a perfectly legal way to make it easily accessible. If your ads are annoying and intrusive, users will find a perfectly legal way to block them. Listen to your users! Give them what they want, or they will take it!