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Firefox Will Soon Mute Autoplaying Videos Automatically

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Autoplaying videos are one of the most egregious banes of internet culture. Fortunately, Firefox 66, which Mozilla is scheduled to launch this March, will mute them by default.  ( Gerd Altmann | Pixabay )

The upcoming Firefox 66 update will mute autoplaying videos by default, Mozilla has announced in a blog post. No more of those pesky things.

The internet is full of trolls warring on various political drama, but if there is one thing everyone can agree on, it's that no one likes autoplaying videos. No one. Thankfully, Mozilla is going to do everybody a huge favor by automatically muting these videos when they start playing.

Mozilla Knows You Hate Autoplaying Videos

The organization details in its new blog post that Firefox 66 is blocking any video that plays before the user has interacted with a page by clicking with their mouse, pressing a key on their keyboard, or touching it directly via a touchscreen.

The videos will be blocked except when deliberately allowed by the user. There will be an icon that pops up in the URL bar to indicate the autoplaying media has been blocked, and clicking on it will bring up a menu that will allow users to change settings as they see fit. It is not exactly clear why anyone would do such a thing, but it's there just in case.

Mozilla will also allow people to specify which websites they want to autoplay, which lets sites such as YouTube or Netflix to continue functioning as normal. This way, users can have more freedom to block and be more selective about the autoplaying sites they visit.

Google Chrome Did The Same Thing

Firefox is of course not the first web browser to declare war on autoplaying content. Just recently, Google decided that it was fed up with them and promptly added a similar blocking mechanism to Chrome last year. This means two of the most popular web browsers in the world now block autoplaying videos automatically, and that's great for all users, not so much for websites.

Google's implementation is a bit different to Mozilla's, though. Chrome is more of a personalized approach in that it tries to determine which sites users would want to be blocked based on their browsing history. Mozilla's method, on the other hand, is broader and more sweeping, banning all sites automatically unless specified otherwise. It's worth noting that Firefox 66 technically won't block the autoplaying videos. It will mute them, but they will still play, meaning they'll eat up bandwidth and processing power.

Mozilla will include autoplay blocking in the next release of Firefox, which is version 66. The update is scheduled to arrive on March 19.

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