How do I get rid of your fugly colors?

or: my browser is smarter than me!

That largely depends on your browser, operating system, and versions of each, but I will outline the basic steps concepts behind browser customization for the most recent versions of Opera, Netscape (now Firefox), and M$IE.

But first, don't ask us to change our colors for you. You are insignificant and just one out of hundreds of thousands that view our site. When seven people complain and one hundred thousand don't, we aren't very likely to change our color scheme. Hell, even if one hundred thousand did complain, we'd just suggest they find something better to whine about. But for those feeling the need to whine, here is your solution.


By far the EASIEST way to render (and any other site that offends your delicate aesthetic tastes) according to your settings is to switch to "user mode," which strips out all of the designers specifications and flips you into Web-circa 1995 mode. For text-centric sites, like attrition, this generally works out fine. There are two ways to do this.

1. Click on the little icon in the upper left of the browsing area that looks like a document. If you hover over it, a hint that says "toggle between document and user mode" appears in the toolbar, which is at the top by default. When you are finished, click on it again to remind yourself why this web site scares you so much.

2. For the ultra savvy, you can toggle between user and document mode by hitting CTL-G.

It is important to note that the site will display according to whatever colors or settings you have chosen in File | Preferences | Documents. If you rock, you can write your own stylesheet for presenting documents in user mode. This is especially useful for sites that specify ultra tiny fonts or horrible text contrast.


Netscape is one of the most compliant in terms of managing user preferences, but also one of the most annoying. There are two important things to know about customizing Netscape 6.x.

1. Under Edit| Preferences | Colors you can choose your background and foreground colors and then select the option that forces your colors to override the document. Unfortunately, you have to do this each time you wish to change how a site displays and then set it back to normal after you have finished.

2. Savvy designers (don't look at us, we didn't do this) allow you to choose more than one stylesheet for displaying a web page. As of this time, the only mainstream browser that allows you to choose from the various stylesheets available is Netscape. Go figure. To see if someone has provided another stylesheet, go to View | Use Stylesheet > and see what sheets are listed there. For example, at, you can choose the "big fonts" sheet to override his designer oriented tiny fonts.

MSIE 6.x

MSIE offers similar options to Netscape for altering a documents' appearance, but does not offer the stylesheet choice option that Netscape offers.

1. Go Tools | Internet Options | Accessibility (lower right hand corner). You can change your colors, fonts, and font style choices here, or, use your own personal stylesheet to display web pages. Again, you have to do this every time you go to the offending site and then undo it when you leave (unless, of course, you wish to always have your preferences override the designer's choices.)

2. A second option, and the one that is most useful, is to go to and install the "change style" and "disable style" WiDGets. Then you can right click on any web page and apply a random, yet professionally prepared stylesheet to the page in question. You can keep clicking until you find one you like, and then read away in textual bliss.


Lynx users need not do a thing. You should remind all these graphic dependant art fag wannabes that people have been viewing white or green text on black screens for over two decades and managed to live.


Attrition now uses stylesheets on new pages to take advantage of basic margin setting, font setting, and other elements that make updating the pages easier. So no, we haven't abandoned our text ethic, just streamlined it a tad to make web updates easier on the staff and our readers. As I have demonstrated, you can pretty much apply a huge level of control to the way these, and any other web pages display if you use a relatively modern browser, and any crying about red links, white text, and black backgrounds will be completely ignored.

main page ATTRITION feedback