UPDATE: The Memphis Commercial Appeal is at it again with the huge, groady, floating Flash ads, so for the second time I'm recycling this post from the last time they pulled this crap:
Aggravated by those floating Flash ads that so obnoxiously get in your way when trying to read indispensable websites? Especially the ones that move to keep their close boxes hidden and take forever to time out?
The Memphis Commercial Appeal started using them prominently recently, most notably for a Hummer ad campaign. I complained to editor Chris Peck via a comment to a column of his, asking him to show us there is some limit to corporate greed, but the floating ads are still on their site.
So I went Googling to find out how to kill those things. Not wanting to install or purchase additional software, I kept looking until I found a blog post by Flash developer Jesse Warden that reveals "How to Disable Floating Flash Ads." His quite simple and elegant method seems to work, at least for Internet Explorer.
Just go to your Windows/System32 folder, create a text file there named mms.cfg, put in this one line:
and save the file.
I will be testing and using this fix until the greedy, obnoxious bastards mess it up. Give it a try and leave a comment on whether it works on your setup and the sites you visit.
UPDATE: I found out that doing the above disables embedded YouTube videos on BlogSpot, so I wrote a couple of one-line batch files to toggle the disable (or you can just enter the commands below in the Run box).
FURTHER UPDATE: Embedded YouTube videos don't seem to be disabled with the fix now.
Call this, say, FlashOn.bat
rename c:\windows\system32\mms.cfg mms.cfx
This renames the mms.cfg file to mms.cfx, which disables the disable.
Call this one, say, FlashOff.bat
rename c:\windows\system32\mms.cfx mms.cfg
This one renames the mms.cfx file back to mms.cfg, which re-enables the disable.
If you can't remember whether WindowlessDisable is on or off, just click the batch file or enter the command for the state you want: no harm done.