What options are there for blocking Flash and animated GIF ads while keeping static image and text-only ads?
I'm interested in solutions for Firefox on Windows/Linux and Safari on OS X.
FlashBlock will replace any Flash content on any website with a placeholder and play button (Firefox Addon).
SafariStand for Mac OS X will block Flash content in Safari similar to FlashBlock for Firefox.
NirSoft's TurnFlash allows you to easily disable and enable the Flash component in Internet Explorer.
TurnFlash is freeware and "standalone", and it doesn't require installation.
This also explains how to permanently block GIF animations in your browser:
In Firefox - Type about:config and change the value of string image.animation_mode from normal to none.
In Internet Explorer - Tools -> Options -> Advanced. Uncheck the box in Multimedia group that says "Play animations in web pages"
Alternatively to blocking animated images you can simply disable animation. Open
about:config in Firefox and set
AdBlock plus can block all Flash animation, but as far as I know it can't distinguish between animated and static gifs.
The filter to block Flash would be
http://ad.uk.doubleclick.net/*.swf (for example). You'll need to train AdBlock for all the different ad sites.
As regards the Safari/OS X part of the question, take a look at ClickToFlash.
It's generic Flash blocker, so doesn't only block ads (but given the state of Flash on OS X that's not really a bad thing). It's got a whitelist, so you can add in sites where you're happy for Flash to load.