World: Google, you are so smart, impartial, and benevolent, please write all our protocols and standards.

Google: Oh yeah, btw, we don’t think you should be able to protect yourself from being tracked on our browser.

Google to break uBlock Origin on Chromium.

PS. While we’re at it, let’s entrust all our freedom of speech to Google also.

@aral Hmmm, this comment about "maybe we shouldn't given Google so much influence over the standards." tempts me into pitching my Memex browser engine...

@alcinnz @aral

We should all start to challenge standards that cause power concentration.

@alcinnz @aral

In theory a standard shouldn't cause power concentration but power distribution, allowing alternative implementations to be interchangeable.

@aral Google: guys, guys, can we talk about this somewhere more obscure that's harder to link to?

@aral That is very, very bad 🙁 I literally can't imagine not using uBlock. The modern web is such a trashfire even *with* uBlock. I'm already on Firefox, but I would move to whatever browser is necessary to keep using uBlock.

Specifically uBlock Matrix 😛🙂

@maiyannah @aral Also unsurprising is the obligatory people tossing Firefox off because of this, as if that is somehow not equally as bad.
@purplehippo @aral its just another Chrome.  Google controls it as well.  It exists purely as the illusion of choice to prevent antitrust suits.


We're a Firefox with uBlock and uMatrix family.

Chrome will do themselves no favours doing this crap.

One of my local news sites, who I had been white listing for years because I wanted to support the site and use the advertising companies; just started blocking their site entirely if they see you're using an ad blocker! Oh well, I'll just read my local news someplace else. *(Turning off javascript prevents them of course from detecting uBlock, lets me read stories anyway)

@aral Wow. So Google is like: Thanks to Microsoft, just about every web browser is now based on our "open source" browser engine. Let's start dismantling all of the technologies that make it possible to avoid our survalience.

God Google makes me so mad!

@aral Would this break Brave too since it's based on Chromium? Wouldn't this help grow Brave?

@aral another good reason to switch to #firefox or another non-chromium browser :-)

@aral it almost looks legitimate but these constraints look arbitrary and I don't see technical reasoning behind them. Only "longer list is hard to traverse" I guess.
Funny thing is, all adblockers are declarative, even umatrix, from the client side. The browser just have to expose more stuff in the rules. I don't believe it cannot be efficient enough.

@aral I didn't install #Chrome when I re-installed #Linux on my laptop and I haven't missed that ugly thing one bit.


@aral god the comment cops in the bug thread you linked are such pieces of shit, clearly just trying to shut down opposition and move discussion to somewhere where nobody will see it

treating these developers of the most critical extensions with millions of users like shit because they're not willing to jump through the hoops that the comment cops are throwing in their way

ugh fuck google

@aral Well, nobody (including google) is obliged to host other people's opinions on their infrastructure. That's why we are using Mastodon :P

@zalandocalrissian Exactly. Now think about how much of the population depends on Google and Facebook and <insert every other surveillance capitalist here> and you’ve just summarised why human rights and democracy are fucked unless we move beyond surveillance capitalism.

@aral freedom of speech neither requires anyone to distribute your opinion, nor to hear it. It simply states you may not be punished for expressing it.

@aral without sarcasm I can say, it's really convenient how you did not include comment 33.

@ng0 There’s literally a link to the page in the original toot. I hadn’t even realised until you just pointed it out. I’m sorry I cropped out part of their excuse.

@aral I wonder whay no one has quoted #xkcd yet…

That said, BTW, I would agree with you if that were on Facebook or so, but it's just the Chromium bug tracker.

@aral With Microsoft on the Chromium bandwagon this is extremely bad news.

So do we have to run Ublock Origin on an OS level now?

@nielsim @aral This will impact users on ChromeOS the most as they will not be able to switch browsers.

Despite the surveillance drawbacks, I have been recommending a Chromebook to utterly non-technical friends and family as a safe and virtually no-maintenance solution. Only thing I had to help with was install uBlock and tweak the blocklists for them. Alas, that solution will have to go out the window as well then.

@fschaap @aral Good point, I do the same thing and was just thinking about the Chromebook of my mother.

@fschaap @nielsim And “despite the surveillance” was never “safe” ;)

On a Chromebook, you have far bigger worries than uBlock being blocked; every default service is designed to track and profile you.

@aral @fschaap True, true. Due to the complexity of Windows and its vulnerability for malware, virusses etc I choose for the less complex, easier to use (and also cheap) ChromeOS for my elderly mom. If there is a Linux as easy to use (perhaps Elementary OS?) I might switch her again. On the other hand, she only mails and uses Facebook, so privacy is not very much on her mind. ;)

@nielsim @aral Exactly this. The people I recommend a Chromebook to have no usable concept of the technology they use or of privacy in the online domain. They simply want to send e-mail, use google to search and/or use Facebook or Whatsapp. And even if there was a super userfriendly Linux out there, I would end up being the sysadmin (if for nothing more than updates, but it usually entails far more cries for help) and for personal reasons that simply is out of the question.

@nielsim @aral I remember (10 years ago? during the first wave of netbooks) there was a company in the Netherlands selling completely locked down, centrally updated and maintained stripped down Linux PCs as "simple online devices for elderly people". You paid a subscription for integrated ISP and maintenance services and maybe some form of cloud storage (???). I really do think there is a market there for managed, privacy-friendly (thus open source/hardware) devices.

@fschaap @nielsim Totally agree that we need inexpensive, usable FLOSS devices. Minimal centralised management is fine (e.g., updates) but we should be designing as much as possible to be decentralised. Especially when it comes to the data.

@fschaap @aral @nielsim It's pretty easy to make a GNU distro for non-techies, just a graphical installer for a few selected packages, no "terminal" by default, and a package manager like nix so the system can rollback when shit happens. It comes with one caveat, those non-techies are REALLY only using email and web browser, perhaps plus office or gimp.

@aral Google is incredibly evil.

Use firefox and modify it so that it serves you and respects your dignity.

On follow the guides that show you how to modify firefox in about:config.

Some websites may break, however I have only noticed Google Drive Videos not to work which I confess to still using.

@aral And thats why Im pissed of that Firefox is going Chromium. Wow.

@muzkore Did I miss something major or did you mean Edge? :)

@aral I read it earlier ( few weeks ago) but cant find where I read it so scrap what I said. Apologies. If I find it, I will post it.

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