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Shortcut to Firefox Reader Mode

When browsing the web, I (and I know I am not alone) am getting more and more frustrated by all the bloat that many websites throw at us. Some news websites are particularly bad. I understand that they want to make money by adding revenue from adverts, but full screen videos that play in the background just eat up bandwidth, battery and most importantly time.

Also a byproduct of GDPR is that I now have a big box that gets in the way when trying to read the article that I want. I just want to read the text, get rid of all the other stuff.

Firefox offers an option, once you have opened a webpage, to remove all the extra stuff and distractions, leaving just the text and images that are part of the article itself. You can find out more about it on mozilla’s blog about the Firefox Reader View. I have loved this view and use it frequently on both my laptops and my phone. My only issue is that you need to open the page first. You need to wait for all the stuff to load, you need to click through the GDPR notices. Only then can you click the button that will remove all the extra stuff.

I want a way to right click a link and instead of getting the options “open in a new tab/window/private window”, add an option for “open in reader view”, bypassing all the clutter and avoiding downloading the unnecessary stuff.

Turns out you can load the page into reader view directly. If you navigate to: about:reader?url= Followed by the url of the website you want, firefox will just load the URL straight to the reader format. Doesn’t bother downloading anything it doesn’t need, doesn’t run any javascript. Just shows you the text you want.

Brilliant.

I don’t have a way to convert it to a right click option, but I do have a method that can make it easy to copy and paste. Just copy the link you want, paste it into the input box below, then click somewhere else on the page, the result will get shown below, which can get copied and pasted into the address bar.

about:reader?url=

There is also a version available on JSFiddle

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