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Who doesn't use JavaScript and Why?

Summary last edited by Biogeographist 20:23, 3 October 2018 1 year ago

An updated version of these notes are now all at No-JavaScript notes.

Quiddity (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I was asked about the demographics of no-JS users, and didn't have a great or solid answer ("Corporate intranet users? old browser users? users avoiding banner ads?"), so went looking. Here's what I found:

Reasons for disabling JavaScript
  • Security
    • For security - (javascript vulnerabilities in browsers)
    • Corporate proxy disabled it - (for intranet security)
    • For privacy - (preventing some tracking/advertising systems, usually coupled with disabled-Cookies)
  • Preference
    • For annoyance prevention - (to prevent things like animations, particularly for users who find these overwhelmingly distracting)
  • Performance
    • For faster site downloading - (less to download (bytes))
    • For faster browser rendering - (less to calculate (complexity))
Other reasons for which users encounter the no-JS version
  • lost connection mid-download - (especially mobile users, and unstable wifi users)
Methods for disabling JavaScript
  • en:NoScript and similar browser extensions
  • Browser settings
  • Connection proxy
  • A browser that doesn't support it - (lynx, etc)
  • 2010 - 1.6% average (2.06% in U.S., 0.26% in Brazil) (according to
  • 2013 - 1.1% in U.K. (according to
  • 2014 - ???
  • (newer stats, and other Reliablesources, would be appreciated. Statcounter doesn't yet reveal no-JS usage)
Sources and good links

Let me know if I missed anything major/minor, or add it to the list :)

Nemo bis (talkcontribs)

Thanks. I don't understand what "Other reasons that users encounter the no-JS version" means.

Quiddity (WMF) (talkcontribs)

That header is intended to list: the reasons why a user would get the no-JavaScript version of the site, whilst using a browser that does support javascript.

Mobile users apparently get this fairly often? The link mentions it ("network errors, especially on mobile devices"), and I was told this directly by a WMF mobile dev.

Feel free to edit for clarity :)