The new styling on the bottom-share-links elements cannot be read. It has bad colors and ultra-low contrast. Here it is on ELU for example:

image of bottom share links on ELU

First, you cannot have red text on a red background. There simply isn’t enough contrast.

Secondly, that’s just the Facebook part. The Twitter part, which here is shown in mouseover colors, it effectively erased altogether.

Perhaps designers with perfect monitors and perfect lighting with the eyes of a twelve-year-old can read this, but nobody else can. It flies against all web accessibility guidelines. Even a trivial hue comparison "by the numbers" shows that this is egregiously illegible.

And it isn't much better on Stack Overflow either:

image of bottom share links on SO

Now the blue on red is VIBRATING it's so awful. Third and last, this is gaudy and gross to look at. A <BLINK>Facebook</BLINK> effect would be less distracting than this is.

This shows that it's not just a problem on one site alone, but everywhere on the network.

Please fix this awfulness.

Here's an image of the weird computed values on one of those elements from Chrome:

image of weird color settings

I wonder what could be injecting these weirdness on me and not others. Curiouser and curiouser.

  • 5
    I didn't see any red boxes around those links when I looked at those sites. Perhaps something else is adding those red boxes for you?
    – Smitop
    Jun 18 at 0:26
  • No repro here on Chrome, Firefox - Win 10 Pro All up-to-date. In fact they're blue not red and have no border. Jun 18 at 0:33
  • @Smitop That's very interesting. I wonder what is is. Still, the colors make it unreadable. Can you read Twitter on ELU with mouseover? I cannot.
    – tchrist
    Jun 18 at 0:38
  • @JiminyCricket Did you look on more than one site? Look on English Language & Usage for example. No blue.
    – tchrist
    Jun 18 at 0:40
  • 1
    @tchrist this is what I see
    – Smitop
    Jun 18 at 0:40
  • @Smitop That's just fascinating!
    – tchrist
    Jun 18 at 0:41
  • 4
    @tchrist No repro for me too. Can you try in a private/incognito browser window? Perhaps you have an extension enabled which is doing something to the links. Jun 18 at 0:41
  • 1
    @CaveJohnson Great idea! Those issues go away when using an incognito browser in Chrome. Wonder what I've accidentally enabled. Wonder if Adblock Plus suppresses those social media links normally, and I've jiggled something on its settings.
    – tchrist
    Jun 18 at 0:49
  • 1
    @tchrist Can you try disabling adblock plus temporarily to see if it's the culprit? If not you can also systematically disable other extensions and stop when the problem goes away. Jun 18 at 1:00
  • 1
    In response to your edit, when you inspect the element you can go to the "Styles" tab which is to the left of the "Computed" tab (which I believe you are on now based on your screenshot) to see what css files are causing those weird styles to be applied. Jun 18 at 1:10
  • 2
    @CaveJohnson I had looked at the Style tab before to see which file was causing the issue, but then went to computed because I didn't understand why it was saying injected stylesheet set in faded grey italics, no less. (time passes) Yeah, it's Adblock Plus who's doing this crazy thing.
    – tchrist
    Jun 18 at 3:21

1 Answer 1


These issues all go away when using an incognito browser in Chrome. That means it's nobody else's problem.

I do wonder what I've accidentally enabled. Perhaps Adblock Plus suppresses those social media links normally, and I've unknowingly jiggled something in its settings. This is definitely a brand new "special effect" for me.

In any event, the answer must be that this is something in my own settings that I don't even know about, since it disappears when incognito in the same Chrome browser.

And the answer is...

Yes, this is specifically caused by Adblock Plus. The proof is that when I disable that extension on the SE page, all the weirdness goes away. I'm going to blame this one on cat-walks-on-keyboard-and-changes-your-world-while-you're-up-making-coffee.

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