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Google News links - left click does redirect to Google page, right click and select "open in new tab" goes to actual source. Why?

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In Google News, if I select and left click on a link to a source, it sends me to a redirected page, such as: https://news.google.com/news/?ned=us&hl=en If I right click the same link, and direct Firefox to open the link in a new tab, it goes to the "real" page, such as: https://twitter.com/AlyssaMastro44/status/919988497976582144 (These examples are from the same Google News article.) I have redirects blocked, for security reasons. It's not that hard to right click and make a menu selection, but I'd like to know why this difference is happening. Thanks!

In Google News, if I select and left click on a link to a source, it sends me to a redirected page, such as: https://news.google.com/news/?ned=us&hl=en If I right click the same link, and direct Firefox to open the link in a new tab, it goes to the "real" page, such as: https://twitter.com/AlyssaMastro44/status/919988497976582144 (These examples are from the same Google News article.) I have redirects blocked, for security reasons. It's not that hard to right click and make a menu selection, but I'd like to know why this difference is happening. Thanks!

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jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
7298 solutions 59417 answers

Google results pages have script handlers attached to links that can modify their path to a site, for example, passing through an exit script that records your click to your Google search history. Possibly a right-click doesn't trigger that script.

Google results pages have script handlers attached to links that can modify their path to a site, for example, passing through an exit script that records your click to your Google search history. Possibly a right-click doesn't trigger that script.

Question owner

Thanks for your information, but it doesn't really help for two reasons: 1. You mention "Google results pages", as though I'm doing a Google search. I am not searching with Google - I'm selecting news stories from Google's news aggregator. Maybe this is not the difference I think it is? 2. It seems like, whatever Google intends with their links, Firefox should (could?) read the displayed link, and take me to it, rather than to some hidden Google address.

Thanks for your information, but it doesn't really help for two reasons: 1. You mention "Google results pages", as though I'm doing a Google search. I am not searching with Google - I'm selecting news stories from Google's news aggregator. Maybe this is not the difference I think it is? 2. It seems like, whatever Google intends with their links, Firefox should (could?) read the displayed link, and take me to it, rather than to some hidden Google address.
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
7298 solutions 59417 answers

Poalima said

I'm selecting news stories from Google's news aggregator.

Before posting my reply, I tried to find a page that behaves the way you described and couldn't. Can you give a sample link, or does it require some kind of account/password?

It seems like, whatever Google intends with their links, Firefox should (could?) read the displayed link, and take me to it, rather than to some hidden Google address.

There are add-ons to modify links in web pages and bypass scripts, and those can be updated very quickly. I think that working around the constantly evolving link code of popular websites is unlikely to be made part of Firefox.

''Poalima [[#answer-1019674|said]]'' <blockquote>I'm selecting news stories from Google's news aggregator.</blockquote> Before posting my reply, I tried to find a page that behaves the way you described and couldn't. Can you give a sample link, or does it require some kind of account/password? <blockquote>It seems like, whatever Google intends with their links, Firefox should (could?) read the displayed link, and take me to it, rather than to some hidden Google address. </blockquote> There are add-ons to modify links in web pages and bypass scripts, and those can be updated very quickly. I think that working around the constantly evolving link code of popular websites is unlikely to be made part of Firefox.

Helpful Reply

Hi. I have done some more "digging", and it appears that I was missing part of the story. When I mouseover the first link on this morning's Google News, Firefox shows "https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-calls-rep-wilson-wacky-stoking-the-controversy-over-condolence-calls/2017/10/21/5b3aaf6c-b695-11e7-be94-fabb0f1e9ffb_story.html" If I right-click and select open in new tab, it takes me to that location. If I left-click, Firefox says it blocked a redirection to "https://news.google.com/news/?ned=us&hl=en" However, if I tell Firefox to allow the redirection, I end up at the same location as the right-click. So, maybe Google News is just passing my request through some capture of their own? Anyway, I do have an addon to block such activity, but it appears to have stopped working. I will look for another. Thanks, again.

Hi. I have done some more "digging", and it appears that I was missing part of the story. When I mouseover the first link on this morning's Google News, Firefox shows "https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-calls-rep-wilson-wacky-stoking-the-controversy-over-condolence-calls/2017/10/21/5b3aaf6c-b695-11e7-be94-fabb0f1e9ffb_story.html" If I right-click and select open in new tab, it takes me to that location. If I left-click, Firefox says it blocked a redirection to "https://news.google.com/news/?ned=us&hl=en" However, if I tell Firefox to allow the redirection, I end up at the same location as the right-click. So, maybe Google News is just passing my request through some capture of their own? Anyway, I do have an addon to block such activity, but it appears to have stopped working. I will look for another. Thanks, again.
jscher2000
  • Top 10 Contributor
7298 solutions 59417 answers

Google does use what I call exit scripts to track your click on the way out. this could be to add to your own web history or just for statistical purposes, or both.

If you don't want Firefox to pause on redirects, you can modify that setting here:

(1) In a new tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk.

(2) In the search box above the list, type or paste access and pause while the list is filtered

(3) If the accessibility.blockautorefresh preference is bolded and "modified" or "user set" to true, double-click it to restore the default value of false

Success?

For Firefox 52 ESR you can use that same method, or:

  • Windows: "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Options
  • Mac: "3-bar" menu button (or Firefox menu) > Preferences
  • Linux: "3-bar" menu button (or Edit menu) > Preferences
  • Any system: type or paste about:preferences into the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it

In the left column, click Advanced. Then on the right side, with the "General" mini-tab active, make sure the following is not selected (box is not checked): "Warn me when websites try to redirect or reload the page".

Google does use what I call exit scripts to track your click on the way out. this could be to add to your own web history or just for statistical purposes, or both. If you don't want Firefox to pause on redirects, you can modify that setting here: (1) In a new tab, type or paste '''about:config''' in the address bar and press Enter/Return. Click the button accepting the risk. (2) In the search box above the list, type or paste '''access''' and pause while the list is filtered (3) If the '''accessibility.blockautorefresh''' preference is bolded and "modified" or "user set" to true, double-click it to restore the default value of false Success? '''For Firefox 52 ESR''' you can use that same method, or: * Windows: "3-bar" menu button (or Tools menu) > Options * Mac: "3-bar" menu button (or Firefox menu) > Preferences * Linux: "3-bar" menu button (or Edit menu) > Preferences * Any system: type or paste '''about:preferences''' into the address bar and press Enter/Return to load it In the left column, click Advanced. Then on the right side, with the "General" mini-tab active, make sure the following is not selected (box is not checked): "Warn me when websites try to redirect or reload the page".