Yahoo Shark Jumpage

Today is the day when Yahoo News Photos finally jumped the shark. They changed it so that clicking on any thumbnail opens a popup window via JavaScript instead of being a "real" link; this means you can't use middle-click to queue a bunch of images to load in the background in their own window or a tab. Also, the JS code re-uses the same window every time, so even if you left-click on a bunch of thumbs, it only ends up showing you the last one you clicked.

So basically it's utterly useless now.

What other "current news photos" sites are there that I should be using instead?

(Google News is totally no good for this, since its photos are incidental to the articles. I want something photo-oriented, not article-oriented. You know, like Yahoo News Photos used to be before they fucked it up.)

Hint to idiots who think that using <A HREF="javascript:..."> is a good idea:

    It's not.

    But if you insist on going down that dark road, do it like this instead:
    <A HREF="http://real-url..." OnClick="thingy(); return false">. That makes left-click do your JS BS, but lets middle-click do something sane, and also lets your page continue to function if JS is turned off. And spiders work, and bookmarks work, and basically you avoid ass-fucking the web. Ok? Thanks.


Tags: ,

87 Responses:

  1. mactavish says:

    AUGH I hate not being able to load images while I'm still reading a page!

  2. endquote says:

    In your "better" example, the "javascript:" is not necessary (and might actually break it).

    Generally I do:

    <a href="actual thing" onclick="return thingy()">

    And then let thingy() return whatever true/false.

    Knowing Yahoo, I bet their stuff works in some (probably crappy) if you don't have JS on. You might just try turning it off. Or wait for someone to write a Greasemonkey script to fix it.

  3. hub_ says:

    "a href" not "A HREF". XHTML is the future, let's comply by using the lower case :-)

  4. rm76 says:

    I believe the onclick syntax didn't work in ns 4.x..... Only the href="javascript:" syntax.......

  5. mark242 says:

    I was going to make that a javascript href, but you're pissed off enough already.

  6. waider says:

    You could try BBC's "News In Pictures" which isn't bad and turns up the occasional gem, or you can fling this at greasemonkey:

    // ==UserScript==
    // @name YnewsDieJs
    // @description No more skanky js
    // @include
    // ==/UserScript==

    var links = document.getElementsByTagName("A");

    for( i = 0; i < links.length; i++ ) {
    if ( links[i].href.indexOf("openSS") != -1 ) {
    links[i].href = links[i].href.replace( "javascript:openSS('", "" );
    links[i].href = links[i].href.replace( "')", "" );
    • thirdwired says:

      Or almost as good, page authors could actually use this code in the JavaScript behind an onload handler. Retrofitted for document.links (or served conditionally?) this would work all the way back to Netscape 3, maybe even Netscape 2.

      All hail robust code!

  7. zhixel says:

    I think with the advent of tabbed browsing and the change it has brought to people's browsing habits, has jumped the shark in general. There's very few instances where I can imagine there being a good reason for a website to spawn a new window. The only one off the top of my head being for some type of verbose help while filling out a form.

    Speaking of retarded window methods, sometimes I really wonder who's idea resizeTo/resizeBy and moveTo/moveBy was. Ugh.

    • editer says:

      I don't know about that. Unless IE added tabbed browsing while I wasn't looking, a large majority of Web users haven't changed their habits. Sure, all the cool kids are using Firefox or Opera or some such, but how many is that, after all?

  8. duncanmak says:

    You should be able to write a greasemonkey script easily to rewrite the page back to how it used to be, right?

  9. evan says:

    Jesus, your comments hurt my brain. I don't know how you can deal with it.

    This will fix it:

  10. sjn says:

    None of these are probably exactly right, at least when compared to yahoo's news photos, but here are a few I have bokmarked.

    First is Corbis

    This is a stock photography site that is really very comprehensive and up to date. If you do a search by news (or anything else) and sort by date added you will get more than you could ever need. No registration required to look at the images. There is a watermark on them though. If you register (free if I recall) the watermarks goes away.

    National Geographic
    Some really pretty shots, but it's National Geographic, so nothing really interesting/weird.

    New York Daily News
    2.5 million photos they claim, again water marked, no idea if you can get rid of them, also images are not that big.

    Washngton Post
    I like the size of their pictures. The content is good or bland. The biggest downside is that they do it as a flash slide show, so when I have gotten (stolen) images from them I have to do it via screen shot.

    On all of these, your results will of course be your own, I am usually looking for images I can use to patch another image or to use as deep back grounds. Good luck.

    PS: I prefer "A EhFr" but I am dyslexic

    • sjn says:

      Just to reply to myself with a question, does LiveJournal always chop up URL's like above? Is it me? Is it my machine?

      I am seeing:
      as clickable and the remainder "ntent/photo/" as regular text.

      Becareful clicking on links.

    • I think what he wants is something that displays photos that are:
      (1) recent (i.e. news)
      (2) popular (so he doesn't have to sift through huge archives by himself)
      (3) in HTML (so he can middle-click)

      • mark242 says:

        You write Powerpoint slides for a living, don't you?

        • Ha. Actually I don't know how to use Powerpoint. Which might be an even more embarrassing admission.

          I think I was subconsciously anticipating an LJ argument and the need to refer to my points by number. :)

      • sjn says:

        i think some of those are 2 out of 3...

        I figured since I did not have some javascript to throw out there, I would try something else.

    • mactavish says:

      National Geographic. . . Some really pretty shots, but it's National Geographic, so nothing really interesting/weird.

      Well, lots real interesting, but some of us are weird that way.

  11. candid says:

    A lot of the best YahooNews photos came from AFP.

    Their website seems to keep the last 12 around:

  12. (1) I'm so habituated to middle-clicking Yahoo! Photos that I've done it three times today, only to realize that I have empty tabs.

    (2) At least they didn't do it in Flash.

    (3) Hey, have you heard of this great new thing called GreaseMonkey? It totally removes your right to complain, because you can just put in the work to make someone's site operate the way it should have in the first place, and .........

  13. bifrosty2k says:

    Just to chime in, I hate it too.
    I would be happy if Javascript drowned in its own vomit.

  14. benmarsh says:

    I don't know whether you use firefox but anyway. My solution to this problem is this extension in firefox called tab browser preferences. When javascript tries to open a new window the url comes up in a background tab instead like what happens when you middle click something.

    The selection of the following options in the "tab browser preferences" extension is necessary.
    "Load windows diverted into tabs in the background"
    "Open these requested JavaScript popups in tabs.
    After loading the extension they can be found in Tools -> Options.

  15. fo0bar says:

    Also related are sites that do <a href="#" onClick="some_crappy_popup()">, again, without returning false. Thank you for temporarily fucking up my ability to click "back".

  16. Heh. Jwz's rant reminded me of this.

    • fantasygoat says:

      Actually, I think that applies more to the people who comment here than anything.

      • I don't know. Making a whole LJ entry about how your image middle-clicking powers have been slightly diminished seems pretty wacky.

        • fantasygoat says:

          Yes but he's not sending off angry letters to Yahoo about this "outrage".

        • jwz says:
          1. "Something Awful" has never been funny. Never.
          2. If that page was supposed to do something other than display a stupid static graphic, it didn't.
            1. But please don't bother explaining, I really, really, really don't care.
          3. I didn't not post about middle-clicking, or asking how to use Spankmonkey, or whatever you idiots have been blathering on about. I posted asking for pointers to a news photos site that sucked less. That's all.
          4. I think I should just ban everyone who commented at all.
  17. krick says:

    There might be a Proxomitron filter that will rewrite the URLs for you when the page loads to remove the javascript links.

    Check the Prox-list...

  18. lohphat says:

    I'm still getting over jwz using the term "jumping the shark".

    I feel

  19. imnewtryme says:

    holy crap
    I've been right-click-OpenInNewTab'ing the whole time i've used firefox
    my life is so much easier now!
    so excited.

    • ronbar says:

      I think the middle-click-for-a-new-window/tab thing started in either Netscape 2 or 3 for unix/X... maybe put in there by jwz. Ever since then I've habitually middle-clicked on links whenever I've been on a machine with a middle mouse button or clickable wheel.

      I was happy they kept that functionality in mozilla. It was pretty much the only reason I put up with those horrid mozilla betas in the Grueling Years, even when I had to use windows. The worst of those betas was better than Netscape 4 in unix.

      • imnewtryme says:

        between that and mouse guestures, using IE is hellish.

      • kragen says:

        Middle-click for a new window was in NCSA Mosaic, before the Netscape company was formed, before Jamie wrote his first line of mashed potatoes for the browser they called "Mozilla" before they had to rename it "Netscape".

    • edge_walker says:

      You can also use Ctrl-LeftClick, which is handy on computers where the mouse lacks a middle button and maybe even a right button.

      • abates says:

        Or where the middle button is also the mouse wheel, so you go to middle click on a link and the page scrolls up so you miss it. So you go to click on the link again and the page scrolls down. I'l like to find whatever genius decided on having the scroll wheel double as the middle button and give them a good kick up the arse.

        • jwz says:

          I think you just need a better mouse. Mine (Logitech Mx310) has enough tension in the wheel that I almost never scroll when I meant to click.

  20. stenz says:

    Ahh, that would explain why the scripts I have which feed the pool for this site have been dying every time they run. I have been too busy lately to look into it at all - but starting yesterday sometime I think they all started failing - they can no longer scrape the page I guess. Too lazy and not enough time to look into another way of grabbing the data at this point.

  21. flan53 says:

    go to and click on the day in pictures. not as many as yahoo, but nice

  22. d1663m says:

    They've totally whacked their news site! I mean not just the javascript mess. Many links off the main news page ( are just plain broken.

    AFP (mentioned above) looks good, Reuters does too :

  23. gecampbell says:

    I apologize that I am such an idiot, but we've adopted your suggestion and it should be live in the Yahoo! News site shortly. I apologize for any inconvenience.

    • lherrera says:

      That was fast.

      Nice clown! Here's your cookie :)

    • d1663m says:

      Wow. Who else would have that kind of influence of Yahoo content? I mean except for somebody who works there, obviously. Truely amazing. Seriously! I could have ranted till I was blue in the face, I doubt I would have affected a change nearly as quickly, if at all.

    • shadowolf says:

      While I bow to the awesome power of <lj user="jwz"> to use his powers for good, not evil, is there a fix for Safari in the works? ⌘-clicking (which should open a new tab behind the current one) is still opening and making a new tab active.

    • strspn says:

      Can I ask a different favor? Your "captiontext" style makes sub-window textareas with their own scroll bars, often obscuring more than half the caption, and necessitating scrolling the sub-window to read the whole thing. You clearly have the room to double the textarea's height without having the right column exceed the height of the typical picture; that wouldn't break your constant-height formating, and it would be much nicer on your users. Please?

      • gecampbell says:

        I'll pass it along to the UE people. Believe me, we do listen to what people say, and not just jwz. We've actually implemented a ton of suggestions that people made during the public beta period. Now that the site is live, we've been receiving many more comments. Of course, many of them are contradictory and not helpful, but some (like this one) are actually quite reasonable. I think it's important to point out that there's not some huge, evil "YAHOO" behind all of this. There's real people, real engineers and designers, who are trying to do the best they can and who are quite willing to work with you guys to help improve things. Hopefully that's not too idiotic. :)

    • One more suggestion -- the "related" links below each caption have the same JavaScript problem -- any chance of doing the same to those as to the links to the images?