Loving Cookies While Hating The Digital Cookie Policy

I love a good cookie. The best are large, flavorful cookies that are slightly soft but not too much, with lots of flavor and, hopefully, lots of chocolate chips. I’ll trade in a good chocolate chip for a cookie I had recently, which had melted Heath bar pieces and KitKats; OMG!

There are good cookies and there are bad cookies. There are a lot of flavors I won’t start mentioning here but I hate them. Anything with a fruit in them, I hate them. Fruit flavor “might” be fine in some circumstances (like lemon), whereas in other circumstances I’m never touching them (like strawberry).

Yet there’s a cookie that, until recently, I pretty much ignored that I hate worst of all… that being the digital cookie. Actually, it’s not the cookie I hate so much; it’s those infernal digital cookie policies that websites have popping up all over the place to satisfy that horrible GDPR policy.

These things are almost as bad as popups, which I hate with a passion, so much so that I block javascript on Firefox from automatically loading. I haven’t seen a popup in years that came before I decided to open up a site… and if something pops up immediately, I turn it off again and go my own way.

I do the same with this cursed cookie policy things on Firefox. They’re all blocked, and that suits me just fine. For sites I actually want to see that have cookie policies showing up, I use a plugin to kill them so I don’t have to deal with them again.

You know where the biggest problem is? On mobile… of all places! What’s happening is that I use Flipboard to find things I want to share with others on social media and items I want to save for myself as reference material. Yet, at least 40% of the sites I end up on have these cookie policies popping up… blocking everything… without a way to close them except to accept the policy… which I refuse to do.

This is supposed to be counter to what Google said should be happening and what they were going to do to sites that did this. Only it’s not because Google has its own issues with the European Union’s policies so they’re ignoring their own; sigh…

Look, I get it; you want to comply with the GDPR on the cookie thing. I even understand that most of you have selected a plugin to handle it for you. When the day was coming closer I actually downloaded a plugin to handle it for me… only it looked horrible across the top of my blog, so I got rid of it.

Since less than 2% of my traffic comes from European nations (not counting the UK), and I’m not marketing anything specifically to anyone over there, I decided to leave it alone, along with that other stupid GDPR thing about allowing anyone in the European Union to request that you wipe out anything someone over there has ever posted on this or any of my other blogs. Be accountable for your own actions; it’s not my job to be your nanny!

With that said, I’d like to put through some requests to those of you who do have those annoying cookie policies popping up. These aren’t only for my sake, but for the sake of your other visitors:

1. Please check to make sure people can either ignore your cookie warning and still participate on your site or make sure there’s an “X” somewhere so we can close it. If anyone else is like me and the only way I can see your content is to accept cookies via your policy, we’re not doing it.

2. Please check your cellphone to see what your cookies policy looks like there. If it’s totally blocking everything else out, see if you can change it (I know some of these plugins give you the option of altering the size of the message). If you don’t have that option, change plugins.

For the rest of you, if you don’t want to deal with the cookies or any other stupid messages, I offer these suggestions:

1. If you’re on Chrome on your computer or laptop, go into settings, then go to advanced settings. Under Privacy, click on Content settings and look for Javascript. Once you’re in there, you can click on the blue button to turn it grey. After that, you have the option of adding sites you already know you want to see, starting with “www”. If you go to other sites and you want to turn javascript on, you can click the red X in the top right of your address bar and turn it on.

2. If you’re on Chrome on your smartphone (Android users), go into settings, then site settings and you’ll see the javascript option about halfway down. Follow the same process as above after that.

3. If you’re on Firefox, I recommend an add-on called Javascript Control. You can set it to automatically shut down javascript on all sites, which is what I’ve done. If you go to a site and you want to see what you’re missing (some sites are all javascript; sigh…), you can click on the grey “JS” button in the address bar and that’ll turn it on. The best part about it is you can click on it again to remove javascript.

Any other browsers… you’re on your own! lol

Irritated web visitors won’t come back to your site; not letting people see your content is irritating. Too many popups are irritating. This is why so many people use Adblock; do you want more people to be like me and block javascript so we won’t possibly be irritated by your site?

Something to think about.

16 thoughts on “Loving Cookies While Hating The Digital Cookie Policy”

  1. I use a plugin on two of my sites. I don’t think it’s obtrusive. It basically has a bar at the bottom of the page and you can either accept or reject it. It also allows you to read my policy.

    I haven’t done much surfing of late so haven’t come across any of the stuff you referred to in your post.

  2. Hmm, the thing is, GDPR is only supposed to be a concern if you want people to sign up for something. I suspect the popups are one of two things: solutions implemented in ignorance of GDPR; or, by pretending to blame GDPR, a slick way to get you to accept cookies (which are yummy as heath bar cookies to marketers!)



    1. Mmmmm, heath bar cookies… that’s what the top cookie is you’re looking at. 🙂 I think you’re correct, but it’s also larger sites that are having these cookie and privacy missives blurring out the possibility of seeing the content because we can’t find the X. I just turned off javascript on my phone; I hope that helps some.

  3. It’s an interesting concept. I don’t use pop-ups, though I’m considering using some small “Mitch-Friendly” ones (if there is such a thing) on certain of my sites. But I’m still researching.

    The problem I ran into *was* on my iphone, and one pop-up just wouldn’t be bypassed so — similar to you — I decided I didn’t need the info that bad so I left the site. I’ll have to investigate turning off javascript on my phone. I didn’t think iPhones played that game. We’ll see. Good luck 🙂 Thanks for the tips.

    1. As much as I hate popups, if they didn’t show until you got to the end of an article, or were limited to the bottom of the screen, they wouldn’t bother me as much as those that block everything until you make a decision. So many people say that those things only come up once, and that if you visit again they won’t come up again; maybe that’s how it’s supposed to work but it rarely works in my favor.

      Having it happen on mobile is irksome; glad I figured out the thing about turning off javascript.

  4. Hi Mitch, I’ve found once you click it’s okay you won’t ever see it again. It’s a one time click for most sites now. I have a plugin for it as I do have email sign-ups and wanted to be safe 🙂 It is called pipdig Cookie Banner.
    I prefer your heath bar cookie of course. Your food images on Instagram always makes me hungry!
    Thanks for sharing about this and how to deal with it. Loving the new look of your blog here Mitch!

    1. Hey Lisa, you said “most sites”; that’s the problem I have with a lot of these things because “most” never seems to mean me. lol Blocking javascript seems to do justice for me, thus I’m comfortable with it.

      Yeah, those sneaky cookie people; the nerve, making things that taste that good! lol

  5. Hi Mitch 🙂

    Your decision not to comply with GDPR provided to me a better experience. Therefore, without revealing whether I agree or not with your decision, I can say that I understand it and it has a powerful logic: you didn’t comply with GDPR but you made my life better.

    When it comes to blogs that force the visitor to accept the privacy & cookie policy in order to get access to such blogs, I cannot say that I understand them. They annoy the visitor and at the same time they don’t comply with GDPR. This case doesn’t make sense.

    Why did I claim that they don’t comply with GDPR? Because the purpose of that regulation is to make website owners inform their visitors AND give to these visitors certain control (such as rejecting non-essential cookies or revoking their initial consent).

    Enjoy your weekend!

    P.S. I’m not a lawyer, so no reader of this comment has to consider it as professional advice.

    1. I find it funny that you had to write a disclaimer on a blog comment. lol In any case, I’m glad you found the experience joyful and not overbearing with those stupid cookie messages. I’d thought there had to be something allowing us to get around those suckers if we didn’t want to be bothered; thanks for adding to that clarification. Most of the time people are jumping through enough hoops to try to please the Big G; I’m not acquiescing to this unknown entity. There has to be a level of personal responsibility at some point. Thanks for your perspective! 🙂

  6. Hi Mitch! I suddenly have a craving for cookies. lol. Not sure who decided to name the digital cookie after something yummy. Let’s rename online cookies to something that starts with annoying. I’m still thinking of a name. 🙂

    It’s not ideal to click that ok or accept cookies button multiple times a day when I go to websites. But that’s unfortunately the reality we live in today. I’ll try your blocking javascript thing if I get too annoyed. At the moment clicking accept happens on auto because I’m so used to it by now. Click, next site, click, repeat x10.

    Love your blog and your thoughts about stuff. Will be reading some more of your other posts.

    1. Thanks Lorenzo. I hate that so many people feel forced to alter their websites to acquiesce to this nonsense. I wish we could find a way to block cookies from the creator side; I’m going to be researching that further, but for now I’m just not doing it.

      I think the “cookie” thing has to do with eating cookies and leaving crumbs after eating them. That seems to explain the metaphor better… though I’m not sure it’s true. lol

  7. An interesting spin on this whole cookie banner and the GDPR thing, Mitch. Personally, I get approx. 20% of my traffic from the UK and Europe, depending on which blog we’re talking about. So, yes, I have cookie banners. Hope they haven’t intruded on you visiting! lol
    But, to be honest, they don’t bug me too much, it’s the d*mn popups to subscribe that drive me crazy. No matter what you do they won’t stop. And what’s worse is those slide down, full screen, sign up forms. I HATE those!
    Have a great day. 🙂

    1. I hate popups with a passion Amanda, so I feel your pain. The problem with the cookie thing is that it’s messing up looking at websites on my smartphone. Sometimes you can’t find the X to close the boxes, and I’m not allowing myself to be forced into accepting anything. At least on the computer, blocking javascript takes care of that problem.

      1. Yeah, I hear you. You’d think with mobile being the top priority these days the banners would be better optimized.
        Good tip re the JavaScript though.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *