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Can't run videos from cnn, washingtonpost websites, can from others

Posted on 2013-01-29
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Last Modified: 2013-02-09
Two PCs recently started not displaying videos from cnn.com or washingtonpost.com although they can do so from Adobe's site and other websites (e.g. BBC at news.bbc.co.uk). Same behavior on both PCs with both Firefox 17.0.1 and IE 8.

One PC runs Windows 7 64-bit and flash 11.5.502.146 (current latest version). One PC runs Win XP SP3 and flash 10 – not sure of exact version.

Web access for both PCs is through a Verizon FIOS connection.

Have done troubleshooting on the Win 7 PC:

* uninstalled flash, rebooted, reinstalled flash.

* cleared browser cookies and cache.

* for IE did a full reset of IE back to default.

* run Firefox in safe mode.

None of this helps the situation.

Any ideas how to fix this?

Thanks, Pete
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Question by:Pete2009
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Expert Comment

by:Gabriel Clifton
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Use a program like revo uninstaller to remove flash. Install flash again, remember flash has two versions for windows, one for IE and one for everyone else.
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Author Comment

by:Pete2009
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Thanks although this had no effect. I installed Revo Uninstaller, used it to uninstall flash, rebooted, reinstalled both flash (FF and IE). Same behavior as reported above.
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Assisted Solution

by:Gabriel Clifton
Gabriel Clifton earned 250 total points
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Ok, I have tested cnn with chrome, ie and firefox and it is working for me. You have revo'ed flash, (I verified that the videos do use flash) which will remove all traces of flash in case of some corruption. I believe you ensured flash was enabled. Starting browsers in safe mode will disable plugins. Try disabling all plugins except flash.
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Author Comment

by:Pete2009
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Thanks. Some interesting findings:

Firefox (my preferred browser): I manually disabled all plugins and extensions other than Shockwave Flash. Virtually no change:
BBC page - videos play
CNN page: the ad plays but the "real" video does not
Washington post (TWP below): nothing plays

IE8: unchanged:
BBC plays well
CNN nothing plays
TWP nothing plays

I also tried Chrome since you mentioned it:
BBC plays properly
CNN also plays properly
TWP nothing plays
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Author Comment

by:Pete2009
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Could it have anything to do with the applications mapped to a particular plugin? Although I cannot see how this could be and it works differently for BBC versus the others.

Pete
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by:Pete2009
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An update since the status has changed. The only thing I did was email to washingtonpost.com about the problem. They said their IT people were working on it. Here is the current status:

Firefox (my preferred browser):
BBC page - videos play
CNN page: the ad plays but the "real" video does not
Washington post (TWP below): videos now play normally!

IE8: unchanged:
BBC plays normally
CNN now the ad plays but the "real" video does not
TWP videos now play normally!

Chrome:
BBC plays properly
CNN plays properly (only browser that works on cnn.com videos)
TWP nothing plays (now only browser that does not work on washingtonpost.com)

Any ideas in particular how to get cnn.com videos working on Firefox and IE?
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Accepted Solution

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Pete2009 earned 0 total points
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I've found the answer for cnn.com. Two factors are at play and either one is sufficient to cause videos to not display, in Firefox and in Internet Explorer.

1. Ads cannot be blocked on the site. For example, if using the AdBlock Plus add-on it must be disabled on cnn.com.

2. In the flash settings, the option to allow third parties to store information on your PC must be enabled. This would be done in the Adobe web-based flash settings manager.

When both these are done, videos display.

It used to not be this way. And to me it seems this requires a less-secure browser configuration. So my solution is to not view videos on cnn.com and in instances where there is a strong need to temporarily change the settings.

Since Washingtonpost.com started working again, perhaps due to my email to their IT people, I suppose this question is resolved. Rather than delete the question it seems useful to leave it in the database for other users.
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Expert Comment

by:Gabriel Clifton
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Good to hear you got out resolved. It sounds as if they do not want to block their alternative income source. Just close it and out will stay for the future users.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Pete2009
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The input from cnn.com IT support was definitive in answering the problem combined with my own testing of the effect of the AdBlock Plus add-on in Firefox.
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