If you’re looking for an alternative, we recommend 1Blocker ( by Salavat and Alex.

Salavat has kindly offered 3-months free to anyone switching from Better to 1Blocker and he will be donating 30% of all revenue from those accounts to Small Technology Foundation on a monthly basis to help fund our work.

To take advantage of this offer, please contact Alex via email at or on Twitter at

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@aral I can recommend 1Blocker, too. A great piece of software.

@aral Maybe I misunderstand you. But I *think* you’re saying:

• you shut down because you can’t in good conscience operate under iOS, but

• you’re recommending equivalent s/w from people whose conscience doesn’t so restrain them.

This seems … incongruous?

Not to mention that—please correct me if I’m wrong—shutting down Better made iOS measurably less private.

I bought your s/w, if that matters.

@babelcarp Basically it’s this: just because we’re not going to continue developing for that platform doesn’t mean we expect everyone to throw away all their devices and get more privacy-respecting ones.

I researched an alternative so we could suggest one as a courtesy, to save people the time of doing so themselves.

The impact of shutting down Better is statistically insignificant compared to how fundamentally client-side scanning violates privacy. That’s why we took the decision.

@babelcarp (Because staying on would mean lending our legitimacy to the platform. Essentially the same as saying “this platform basically protects your privacy but web tracking doesn’t.” Used to be true. No longer true the moment Apple finally releases client-side scanning.)

@aral But you’re abandoning iOS *before* they deploy client-side scanning. Plus, they appear to be backing away from it, at least for the near future.

@babelcarp @aral They're deploying the first phase of client side scanning in 15.2 (ie, removing end-to-end encryption for iMessage). They've not said they're cancelling their scanning-for-fingerprints plans, just delaying them as a PR move.

@tfb @aral You think they're twirling their mustaches, *wanting* to compromise their users' privacy?

I think they are feeling pressure from governments and lack the fortitude to resist it.

@babelcarp @aral I don't think it requires mustache twirling, I think they believe the garbage they're trying to sell the public.

They proudly announced a system whereby they would spy on teenagers' messages, and save any nude picture for their parents to review. They backed off from that absolutely horrifying idea, thankfully. But that they proposed this idea at all is shocking. Whatever is going in internally there, from the outside it's indistinguishable from malice.

@tfb @aral I have no emotional investment in Apple’s goodness or even cool.

But in my world their actions are consequential, so I have a certain interest in understanding their motives. That would be true even if I considered them my enemy.

One possible unspoken motive is, to the extent that fingerprinting images/videos works as advertised, it could support what the tech/media industry calls anti-piracy, don’t you think?

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