||The Mystery of the Empty Shopping Cart
|If you've been following the news, you've seen there's a lot of recent debate about privacy on the Internet, especially involving huge mega-sites like Google and Facebook. The large sites would like to follow us around the Web to see where we've been and for how long, and then sell that information to each other to create better ways to separate us from our dollars. Many of us just don't like that idea very much!
The snoops depend on trading "cookies," or packets of information, back and forth between your computer and theirs. The cookies help track your progress from website to website, or across pages within one website. If you've ever clicked on a link from a Google ad, your computer has traded cookies. Data cookies, by themselves, are not risky to your computer or your privacy. Any risk to your computer or your privacy really depends on *which* websites the cookies come from, and how the owners of those sites want to use whatever information the cookies may have stored. To counter the snoops, the newest generations of web browsers include options to turn off cookies. They're not allowed and not used.
Blocking the cookies can get in the way of things you want to do, like shopping our website. Georgies uses an outside shopping cart service, integrated into our webpages, to build your order and handle the checkout process. If the third-party cookies are blocked, our shopping cart can't work. Our website *thinks* it's adding items to your cart, but it's not really getting anywhere. That's why you may sometimes click on items, and click on items, and click them again... but there's still nothing in your shopping cart.
We thought it would be a good idea to give you the information to change this option in Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari and Opera. You can turn these options on or off, temporarily or permanently, however you choose.
(Click on the thumbnail for a larger screen shot from Explorer 8.)
- The menu bar, starting with "File," is located right under the blue Forward and Back arrows in the upper left corner.
- On the menu bar, click "Tools."
- On the dropdown menu, click "Internet Options."
- Click the "Privacy" tab.
- Under the Settings header, you may or may not see a vertical slider bar (like the example at left) to set your custom level of security. If you don't see the slider bar, Exploder will ask you to click the "Default" button to set your security level. Click the "Default" button to make the slider bar appear. We recommend a setting of Medium.
- Click "Apply," and then "OK."
- It's not necessary to reboot your computer for this change to take effect.
(Click on the thumbnail for a larger screen shot from Firefox 3.6.10.)
- The menu bar, starting with "File," is located right above the Back button.
- On the menu bar, click "Tools."
- On the dropdown menu, click "Options."
- Click the blue mask for Privacy settings.
- Look in the box with the "History" header, and the line that starts with "Firefox will." If the rest of the line does NOT say "Use custom settings for history," click the drop down menu to get that option. The rest of the screen will appear, as shown at left.
- The checkbox for "Accept third-party cookies" MUST be checked for our shopping cart to work in Firefox.
- Click "OK" to approve the change and close the Options. It's not necessary to reboot, though you may have to restart Firefox.
(Click on the thumbnail for a larger screen shot from Chrome 6.0.472.)
- In your Chrome window, click on the black wrench located just to the right of the address bar.
- Click "Options" on the dropdown menu.
- Click the "Under the Hood" tab.
- Click on "Content Settings" under the "Privacy" header.
- Our shopping cart will NOT work if the checkbox for "Block all third party cookies without exception" is checked.
- If there is a checkmark in this box, click the box to remove the checkmark.
- Click "Close," and then "Close" again.
- It's not necessary to reboot, though you may have to restart Google Chrome.
(Click on the thumbnail for a larger screen shot from Safari 5.0.1)
- Click the small black gear in the upper right corner of the screen, next to the address and search bars.
- Click "Preferences" in the menu that follows.
- Click the padlock for Privacy settings.
- Look at the options sunder the "Accept cookies" header.
- If the "Never" option is checked, our shopping cart will NOT work for Safari.
- Click the radio button for either "Always" or "Only from sites I visit." Either of these settings will allow our shopping cart to work for you.
- Click the red X to close the window.
- It's not necessary to reboot your computer, though you may have to restart Safari.
(Click on the thumbnail for a larger screen shot from Opera 10.62.)
- Click the red menu button in the upper left corner of the Opera window.
- Click "Settings" in the drop-down menu that follows.
- Click "Preferences" in the slider menu.
- Click on the "Advanced" tab.
- Click "Cookies" in the menu on the left.
- Our shopping cart will NOT work if the option to "Never accept coookies" is checked.
- Georgies' shopping cart will work for either of the other two settings. Choose one and click the radio button.
- Click "OK" to close the window.
- It's not necessary to reboot your computer, though you may have to restart Opera.