Adblock today announced it was joining the fight against social media tracking by allowing users to block what has become so ubiquitous on almost every site out there.
Specifically, the tracking which Adblock Plus now aims to thwart is that which originates from social media buttons. You might recognize them — there are some on this very article. Through these buttons, sites can track and build a so-called “shadow profiles” on you even if you don’t click on them, even if you aren’t logged into any of the sites in question.
This tracking has been a sticking point for sites like Facebook. Among the many other questions posed to CEO Mark Zuckerberg at his Congressional interrogation earlier this year was about these profiles of non-users — the existence of which might violate a 2011 consent decree handed down to the company by the FTC.
To use the feature, Adblock Plus users subscribe to a button blocking list, either in Chrome or Firefox. The company is also considering whitelist options for certain social sites.