Google's "reported attack site" nonsense could lead to a Firefox boycott
Certain pages on this site lead to a "reported attack site" warning for Firefox 3 users which is apparently a feature built into Firefox 3 and provided by Google. This is actually making me want to boycott Firefox because these kinds of cozy relationships is NOT what we want to see happen in the market. A single company taking it upon itself and its apparently flawed algorithms to decide which sites you shouldn't visit and doing it in such an obnoxious way. The ignore button is stuffed in a corner and a way of disabling this "feature" isn't at all obvious.
It is not only us web publishers who are complaining about this as our sites get labeled even when we don't feature any malicious content either posted by us or our users, but web site users themselves are complaining about the sites they usually visit and trust to be safe are suddenly labeled causing this obnoxious warning to display every time they visit it. Here is a thread on Mozilla forums with many such complaints, such as this one:
"I was curious to see what new Zippo lighter models are available, and I was shocked by the fact that the "Product" page at www.zippo.com can not be accesed due to the fact that Firefox 3 and Google "think" that http://www.zippo.com/Products/index.aspx is a "Reported Attack Site"."
And a few others:
"Great now my favorite college radio station is considered an "attack site" thanks to Google."
"My two domains have been diagnosed and said they didn't find anything yet firefox is still showing that phishing message. How could this be? Why is this happening? Now everyone in the world will never ever consider checking my website once they use firefox. this is just plain ridiculous."
"Well I have the same issue my site which is just a comic book website Iberianpress.com was waved as an attack site. What's worse is that after clicking on the link to see the problem, it said that there was nothing wrong with site that it was cleaned. Worst yet this is going to damage the sales of my new book because this is a critical pre order month for our new book."
"They seem to have blanket blocked anything at 'hometown.aol.co.uk'. That's messing with an awful lot of people."
And so on and on. It's clear that this thing could be causing more harm then good. If Google is gonna take it upon themselves to so obnoxiously label sites which supposedly offer malicious downloads then what are firewalls, antivirus programs and malware scanners for? Not to mention Linux users could care less for this "feature" since most malicious software doesn't affect them, yet as many of them are users of Firefox they get to be dealt this crap as well.
Given how disfunctional this is it should at best be merely a firefox extension, not an integrated feature enabled by default. How am I to continue supporting the growth of Firefox if they're gonna chalk it up to Google to control what sites we should visit? They're putting us in a position from which supporting Firefox is getting to be equal to supporting Google's further grip on the market. That's NOT making me happy.
What do you think? And if you have any suggestions for alternatives to Firefox (aside from IE), feel free to suggest.