What? You filtered my comment?

It’s here! The most desired feature of all! Showing when Fox News/Livefyre has filtered your comment! Although, seeing who has liked a post is pretty cool too.

First how it looks

And how to enable it

Whether this feature is active and the highlight color is controlled by two new options on the options page of the extension. And at present it is opt-in until it’s tested by some users.

Note that, in any of the options fields asking for a color, you can enter a CSS Color Name like red, green, blue or even RebeccaPurple. (So cool to have a web color named after you, if only!). Or you can enter a hex code for the color in the form #RRGGBB.

If you want to change colors just google CSS Colors and there are a multitude of pages with color tables or color pickers to choose the color you want, this is just one example.

It you want to try it then note, as in the screen shot above, that apparent email addresses or phone numbers, (that’s not mine above, BTW), are filtered by Fox News so put one in a post.

And then how it works without going too technical

The forum on Fox News uses a technology called AJAX that has been around for around a decade. This lets a web page send a request to a server for content with which to update it’s own page. Google Maps was the first really popular AJAX site. As you scroll the map the entire web page is not reloaded, a request is made for just the portion of the map that has needs to be updated and then that is used to update the page. The Fox News Forum does the same with posts.

When you make a post the text you type in the edit box is not used directly to add the post to the page you see. The post is sent off to Livefyre and then later, when Livefyre is queried for changes to the posts on the page, that post among any others which are new or changed come back and then the page is updated. But one field that comes back in that update is whether the comment should be displayed (or filtered).

The code in the extension works by injecting a script into the Fox News page that watches all AJAX requests and then forwards the responses from Livefyre to the extension. Then the extension examines the responses and finds any posts of the current user which are marked not to be displayed and then highlights them. The Fox News code on the page does nothing with your own filtered posts; it’s why you don’t know they are filtered.

There is, at present, one hole. The extension only checks to determine the current user until if finds a logged in user. So if you change users it will think you are still logged in as the prior user so will not find your own filtered posts. So if you log out and log back in as another user you need to refresh the page. I’ll consider options for closing that hole later, but the key is that it’s not efficient to keep checking who the user is when it’s not expected to change.