I recommend Constant Contact to my clients for creating and mailing out electronic newsletters.  I edit four newsletters,  and another couple of clients write and send out their newsletters themselves.

Yesterday (June 4) Constant Contact updated their system with code that is suddenly incompatible with Firefox browsers running the AdBlock Plus extension.  (Or, possibly, AdBlock Plus updated its logic rules.)

The symptom:

I logged into one Constant Contact account and searched for a user contact.  The search returned no matches.  I knew the contact was good, so I reentered the contact information and re-searched.  This time, the contact came back.  When I clicked on the link for the contact’s “Bounce History” I was dumped to a logon screen.  I could re-login and repeat the process over and over, but I could never get the bounce  information I was looking for.

I later found a problem with logging into Constant Contact and then clicking on “My account”.  Instead of seeing subscription information, I received a “unknown error” message.

The trauma:

Constant Contact tech support and I spend a lot of time on the phone together.  The problem occurred on all of my different machines using Firefox, but not when I used Internet Explorer.  The problem did not occur on Constant Contact’s tech’s machine when she tried using Firefox.  I was later told that Constant Contact was getting a number of calls from other Firefox users, but they could not reproduce the problem themselves.

The Work-Around:

Click on the down-arrow to the right of the Adblock Plus logo. Click on “Preferences” and then on the “Add Filter” tab. Add these three exceptions:

  1. @@||ui.constantcontact.com^$document
  2. @@||constantcontact.com^$document
  3. @@||ccprod.roving.com^$document

These lines keep Adblock from interfering with the information contained in the Constant Contact pages.

Through trial and error, I discovered that green listing the Constant Contact URLs (by clicking on the Adblock option to “Disable” ad blocking) “fixed” the problem I was having.  This disabling produced the exception lines I posted above.

I called Constant Contact back and told them what I discovered — the tech I was thankful. Now, of course, Constant Contact may take my information and change their latest update so as not to run afoul of the Adblock add-on. Or, they may have their  users disable Adblock checking.  Either way will keep me happy with Constant Contact!