Chrome’s Crusade Against Autoplaying Video Just Got Serious

Chrome’s Crusade Against Autoplaying Video Just Got Serious
Image: Google (modified)

With Chrome’s more recent updates, Google is doing its best to eliminate the greatest annoyances found on the web. In this vein, from version 66 of the browser, autoplaying video will be a thing of the past, with Google soon to clamp down on the media behaviour.

In a post on the Chromium blog outlining some of the changes in 66, Google’s Naina Raisinghani follows up on the company’s promise to alter the behaviour of autoplaying videos to make them less obnoxious:

As announced earlier, autoplay is now allowed only when either the media won’t play sound, after the user clicks or taps on the site, or (on desktop) if the user has previously shown an interest in media on the site. This will reduce unexpected video playbacks with sound when first opening a web page.

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With this change, Google is basically one step away from blocking autoplaying videos entirely, which I wouldn’t put past it if the more nefarious websites and advertisers find ways to circumvent these changes.

Admittedly, it’s hard to do considering it’s built into the browser, but I can see people doing wacky things with canvases if they get desperate.

I have a better suggestion though: just don’t have autoplaying videos. It’s not that hard, really.

Chrome 66 Beta: CSS Typed Object Model, Async Clipboard API, AudioWorklet [Chromium, via The Verge]


  • It’s not so much the sound but the pointless waste of data. Well that and it’s just bloody annoying. I could never understand why IGN would have a text review and an autoplay video review with the IGN idiot reading the text word for word.

    Anyway i’ve ditched Chrome because it’s an awful battery sponge on OSX.

  • just kill autoplay videos altogether. Even without sound I find them annoying as hell when I’m trying to read something and there’s a video in my line of sight.

  • “I really appreciate how, when I went to the page of this random news website after following a link from Twitter, they played a really loud intro sting and then an autoplaying video of the news story I am currently reading.”

    — No one, ever.

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