Frequently Asked Questions

  • What's the point of all this?

    The U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has betrayed our trust through their use of illegal and unconstitutional surveillance practices. And recently, it was revealed that they have compromised the deepest roots of Internet security. The systems of trust that form the basis of online communication and commerce are under attack—and the NSA must be stopped.

    Flagger was created in the spirit of civil protest. By flooding the Internet with red flag keywords, we are setting off the U.S. National Security Agency's alarms and delivering a collectively powerful statement through the individual free-speech messages that each user can send out.

    Flagger is not a solution to the problem of unconstitutional government surveillance. Anyone who cares about this has a civic duty to engage in the democratic process and attack the problem at its root. But as long as the NSA continues to illegally spy on us, we have no reason to make their jobs any easier.

  • Is this illegal? Will the government come after me in my sleep?

    I don't believe there is anything illegal about modifying your browser to send out extra data in URLs, but I am not a lawyer and the U.S. government arrests people for all sorts of stupid things. Flagger is a form of civil disobedience. Use it at your own risk.

    Winners will receive an all-expenses-paid vacation to beautiful Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

  • Won't putting extra junk in web addresses cause problems?

    In most cases, sites simply ignore the extra data that Flagger adds to your URLs. If Flagger is causing a problem, you can easily turn it off by clicking on the toolbar icon. There is also an option to send your red flags and message in the background (HTTP headers) instead of altering the URLs you visit. This is even less likely to cause problems (but less dramatic ;)

    Turn on "Don't mangle URLs" if you're having problems.

  • Won't putting 'lulz' and 'dear_nsa' into every URL be easy to ignore?

    Yes. It would be very easy for anyone who's spying on your Internet traffic to filter out Flagger data if we always send those same words into the URLs. Flagger does this by default because it's funny, but you can randomize these by clicking "Randomize parameter names" in the advanced options menu.

  • I am having a problem with Flagger. What should I do?

    Please submit an Issue on my Github page or email me. Be sure to include a detailed description of the problem, and include answers to these questions 3:

    • What web browser are you using, and which version?
    • What operating system? (eg. OS X 10.8.2, Windows 8.1, Xubuntu 13.10)
    • What other browser add-ons do you have enabled?

    I am aware that some people are experiencing problems in Firefox, and I believe that another Firefox extension is conflicting with Flagger. Please try disabling other extensions one-by-one (and restarting Firefox) if you run into problems. And let me know if you figure it out. I might send you a cookie.

    Support representatives are standing by! Well, actually it's just me. But I'll try to help.