Mozilla will block Flash in Firefox starting next month

Mozilla is helping to hammer another nail in the coffin of Flash, and has finally joined other major browser vendors by deciding that starting August this year, Firefox will begin to block invisible Flash content, and that starting 2017, all Flash content will be blocked by default.

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Benjamin Smedberg, writing in the Mozilla blog page said:

“Mozilla and the Web as a whole have been taking steps to reduce the need for Flash content in everyday browsing. Starting in August, Firefox will block certain Flash content that is not essential to the user experience, while continuing to support legacy Flash content. These and future changes will bring Firefox users enhanced security, improved battery life, faster page load, and better browser responsiveness.”

In essence, when August 1st comes around next week, Mozilla will start blocking invisible Flash content.

According to data quoted by Smedberg, this act alone should reduce unexpected Firefox hangs and crashes by about 10%, on average for users of the browser. That said, to begin with, Mozilla will only block a curated list of Flash content that it can replace with HTML.

However, over time, the number of sites that Mozilla will block will gradually increase, and come 2017, all Flash content on Firefox will feature a ‘click to activate,’ approval before Flash based sites will run.

In helping speed up the lingering death of Flash, Mozilla is simply following in the footsteps of many of its browser brethren in phasing out Flash.  Microsoft, Google, and Apple all made similar announcements earlier in the year about ending their relationship with the witheringly aged plugin.

And why wouldn’t they, when even Flash’s creator, Adobe has been advising users to switch to alternatives such as HTML5.

“In 2017, Firefox will require click-to-activate approval from users before a website activates the Flash plugin for any content. Websites that currently use Flash or Silverlight for video or games should plan on adopting HTML technologies as soon as possible,” Smedberg concluded.

You can read the full Mozilla announcement, here.