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Yahoo tests pop-up blocking toolbar

Yahoo on Wednesday started testing a tool for blocking pop-ups for its Companion Toolbar, a downloadable plug-in that allows people to search the Web directly from the browser. The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Web portal, which plans to launch the blocking tool officially next week, said the tool will let tens of millions of Web surfers customize their Net experience by determining which sites from which they will accept pop-up windows.

The move comes roughly five months after search rival Google added similar features to its toolbar and follows an industry trend against the ads. Internet service providers such as EarthLink and America Online have moved to let consumers fend off the ads, and Yahoo updated its Net access software with SBC Communications in September to include a pop-up blocker.