Google Chrome will soon tackle sites that affect the back button

midian182

TechSpot Editor
Staff member

Google calls this tactic of artificially injecting web pages into your browser ‘history manipulation,’ which is often used as a way of generating money through hidden ads. You can escape by holding down the back button and accessing your history, or sometimes by hitting it repeatedly, but it’s still an irritation.

Changes spotted in Chromium’s source code show that Google plans to silently flag these pages, and Chrome will send metrics about them to the company for analysis. Any pages suspected of history manipulation get tagged with the flag: #enable-skip-redirecting-entries-on-back-forward-ui.

Once these pages are identified, Chrome will be able to skip them in the browser’s back/forward list.

“Entries that are added to the back/forward list without the user’s intention are marked to be skipped on subsequent back button invocations,” reads part of the code.

It will be a few weeks before the update makes it into even the beta builds of Chrome, though it should be available in Chrome Canary, which adds the latest experimental features as they arrive, a lot sooner.

Google has yet to release any announcements about the future update, but you can guarantee it’ll make people aware of the change once it arrives.

Permalink to story.

 

p51d007

TS Evangelist
When the back button doesn't work, but just refreshes the page, I just click/hold the back arrow, which pops up a list of previous pages, and do it that way. But, I do like the fact google is doing something about it.
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
There's SOOOOOOOO much more to tackle than just that.

Simply clicking on Google advertisements I get spam, scams, or any other attempt at stealing my information.

Again, this is the real reason we use adblock.... sorry I'm digressing here.

*mutters*... fixing the damn back button huh... yup, little duct tape here... little baling wire there...
 

Plutoisaplanet

TS Addict
When the back button doesn't work, but just refreshes the page, I just click/hold the back arrow, which pops up a list of previous pages, and do it that way. But, I do like the fact google is doing something about it.
You can also right click it on basically any browser. At least in Firefox, you can hold click and drag down as well.
 

Plutoisaplanet

TS Addict
I use and prefer Bing, but they've been notorious about not letting you use the back button once you're on a search results page (at least on Firefox). It's maddening.
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
You should be able to tap and hold the back button. At the minimum, you'll always be able to browse to recent pages from your history.
Yes, but then the page disallows you to do pretty much anything in the browser. Have you not had that happen when it locks up your browser? It kind of sounds like you are assuming the features are always going to work 100% of the time, and that's just not the case unfortunately. :(

Edit: Tbh, I think I'm getting at other issues the browsers have.
 

cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
Well kissanime is well known for the type of ads mentioned in the article
It's not ads the topic is talking about. It is page design. The topic is talking about Chrome detecting pages that redirect, so Chrome can ignore and skip those pages while using the back button. It doesn't have anything to do with your ability to view pages.
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
It's not ads the topic is talking about. It is page design. The topic is talking about Chrome detecting pages that redirect, so Chrome can ignore and skip those pages while using the back button. It doesn't have anything to do with your ability to view pages.
WELL... the issue is still the ads!!!

Of course not limited to JUST ads, but to reiterate it's not just the page design! When advertisements pop up, this is what really causes issues preventing you from clicking back. You can't click back to get back to where you were on... sometimes these even lock up your browser and the only thing you can do is close the tab completely. It doesnt matter how many time you click back... and sometimes you can go to your web history to get back to where you were.... sometimes.

Specifically on mobile devices where this is a real problem. I don't experience ANY of these issues on desktop browsers, AT ALL.

This article seems to be lacking on some key details, and I'm no expert on the topic. However, I KNOW what I've experienced before on mobile browsers, and it's extremely frustrating. Reiterating again, it's not just the page design, but specifically the ads that bring you to a new page and prevent you from going back, with the normal methods.
 

cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
Ads are not what Google is addressing. The only solution with ads is to block them from redirection. You don't want Chrome ignoring the page you are viewing all because some ad on the page redirected you.
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
Ads are not what Google is addressing. The only solution with ads is to block them from redirection. You don't want Chrome ignoring the page you are viewing all because some ad on the page redirected you.
Since I can't find any additional sources that encompass ads into "sites" since they are all technically URL based in some way, they could very well mean ads and sites.

Again, since I've admitted I'm no professional, I won't talk like my opinions are facts... but if what you say is specifically correct in the terminology then this whole thing is completely pointless in my opinion. Sites don't typically cause this problem, it's the ads.

I can't imagine ads would be excluded from their "Any pages suspected of history manipulation get tagged with the flag: #enable-skip-redirecting-entries-on-back-forward-ui."

And if you have any sources to back up what you are saying, that would be appreciated. Otherwise I'm just taking that as your opinion as well. Or, if you want to tell me you are a professional in this area, then maybe I can take that as your source?
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
Ads are not what Google is addressing. The only solution with ads is to block them from redirection. You don't want Chrome ignoring the page you are viewing all because some ad on the page redirected you.
"Mark entries to be skipped on back for history manipulation intervention. Entries that are added to the back/forward list without the user's intention are marked to be skipped on subsequent back button invocations. This CL only adds the bit and subsequent CLs will add metrics and the intervention logic based on this bit."

From here: https://chromium-review.googlesource.com/c/chromium/src/+/1344199

Emphases on "entry" I'm not sure how "site" became the main term in this article.
 

cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
Sites don't typically cause this problem, it's the ads.
There are links that immediately redirect. And when you click to go back, it is the redirection link that it goes back to. Therefor using the back button is pointless. Unless you spam the back button, or use the drop down menu. I've seen it numerous times.
 

Trillionsin

TS Evangelist
There are links that immediately redirect. And when you click to go back, it is the redirection link that it goes back to. Therefor using the back button is pointless. Unless you spam the back button, or use the drop down menu. I've seen it numerous times.
I'm not disagreeing with you. I have a feeling you don't do much browsing on mobile browsers. You seem to be missing the point I'm focusing on.... but anyways, if that's it... then I'll just stop with the debate. For all I know I could be wrong... but what I'm describing is a bigger problem, then what you are seeing here.
 

cliffordcooley

TS Redneck
You seem to be missing the point I'm focusing on...
No you are missing the point I am making.

If I'm viewing a page and then it is redirected because of some ad. When I click the back button. I don't want the page I was viewing ignored all because of the redirection ad.

The redirection links that have no substance are the issue being addressed here. They are the only pages that can be ignored. Without irritating the viewers more so than the problem being addressed.
 

JamesSWD

TS Maniac
Meanwhile, Chrome people removed the tab's mute icon from working...and they never, ever address the issue of warning the user when they're closing multiple tabs.