Um um um um ummmmm... is this what it sounds like? Google is blocking browsers it doesn't "approve" of... apparently just letting in Firefox and Chrome?

The web as an open standards platform is rapidly falling apart. :\

@cwebber Dominent member of the w3c announces "Fuck standards, actually, it's just me and my anti-antitrust blanket now"

extreme Dark Timeline 2020 cyber finish 

that's it, thats the toot.

extreme Dark Timeline 2020 cyber finish 

@cathal @cwebber to be honest i'm actually more mad about Chrome dropping PUSH support.

the Fetch WG systematically ignored all requests to make it useful (probably proclaiming "no implementor interest") then Google 5 years latter is like, huh adoptions not great on this bleeding edge super cool feature no one ever supported, guess we'll just drop it.

so so so much frustration. google being prats about their own property is shit but whatever, it's just them. denying PUSH a future is murder to critical web architecture.

absolutely madcap completely unexpected gigantic WTF of the year from Google, for me:

It even blocks Firefox when the user tries to make it a little bit less "leaky"

While i dont care about the majority of "modern" websites that are just designed to sink time,

But i really want to log into Furaffinity again to connect with the artists and friends there. And to register for Events that can only be done behind a Recaptcha



Browser standards

The browser must have JavaScript enabled. For more details, see our previous blog post.


"Improve Web security by forcing Javascript to always be on", that's a good one

@cwebber just dont use their services anymore and help people move out

@gabriel @cwebber

I’ve been treating Chrome as a dedicated Google services client and nothing else for years now. This tends to make me avoid most Google services unless I need them enough to justify starting up Chrome, which isn’t often.

@cwebber It sounds like they're heading to a situation where you could only sign into a Google account with Chrome or Firefox, with javascript enabled and no proxying (which would rule out things like Tor browser).

I've been degoogling for a decade, and YouTube is the only thing of theirs which I still use with any regularity. The more they try to become Microsoft the more incentive there will be to use other things.

@bob @cwebber It sucks. I can only log in to my email and youtube in Pale Moon... Because Google blocks me on Firefox! I'm definetely not getting chrome... ugh this pisses me off.

@bob @cwebber I write this and I FINALLY got in on Firefox. It only took what 2 months lol

@lanodan @cwebber Don’t be evil? Sorry, I know that’s been gone for a long time.

This is the next step for browser hegemony: You cannot use anything that does not comply exactly with the behavior of the big (co-dependent) development-groups.

It is a way how the spirit of Free Software dies even though the licenses remain. The kind of underhandedness Google also played with Android by creating contract-shackles for hardware developers so few people can get Android without Google.

@cwebber "Browsers:
Modern browsers with security updates will continue to be supported."

So basically if they support modern web standards, and are being maintained, they should still work. No mention on the linked article of specifically only Chrome and/or Firefox (just that you should not try to impersonate those two browsers).

@dadegroot @cwebber I wouldn't hold your breath when google sign in sometimes doesn't even work in desktop Firefox, the whole thing is incredibly cursed with hidden redirects and whatnot
@Nikolai_Kingsley @cwebber it's enough that Firefox is still (?) financed by Google.

And for several years they were only removing features.

@a1batross @cwebber

and adding things nobody wanted and which could only be removed by fiddling with the userchrome.css file.

@cwebber wow... what a rant against all independent browsers! sounds absolutely crazy.
it was time to quit using Google a long ago. this will make it faster.

@glitternoodle @cwebber

I wonder if elinks and w3m are on those browsers given their use by disabled folks. This is a terrible precident to set as it is obviously going to choke out smaller browsers like Midori, Gnome Web, Falkon, and possibly even mid-tier browsers such as Opera and Brave.

And if this attitude continues foward how long until we see websites that entirely try to deprecate browser add-ons just because they want to force feed their content their way?

@cwebber: Is there any solution to this whole issue or are we just doomed. I know Gemini is one and there's also the remote possibility that Mozilla magically fixes itself, but are there any solutions here and now to this loss of freedom by Big Tech?


@cwebber @karmanyaahm Doesn't #gemini still rely on DNS, or is that something to solve separately?

@likho @cwebber I think it does but afaik dns isn't as bad as Google and the rest right now?

@karmanyaahm @cwebber My approach:

I also know of Dillo, Netsurf, and the various commandline web browsers.

I don't see any hope to preserve the functionality of the popular websites in any independant efforts, and as most people will say that these new browsers are "broken". I don't think it's even valuable. But I hope by targetting IoT-type devices I'll simultaneously lower such expectations whilst building something cooler!

@cwebber That's one possible interpretation.
A more likely interpretation is that they mean what they say, which is that they plan to block non-browser applications that embed a browser in order to log the user into Google and scrape their cookies. The supported way to do this is to use OAuth, which they explicitly say will still work, as it has done for the last ~10 years.

@cwebber @danielcassidy and they're sure they can differ 'non-browser applications' from browser? duh! web is just HTTP requests.

@iron_bug @cwebber obviously you can't and most likely they will just blocklist a handful of UA strings including the one chromium-embedded uses by default.
I honestly don't understand why people are interpreting this differently. The post is pretty clear. There are enough things to get upset about in 2020 without actively inventing new ones by interpreting everything in the worst possible light.

@iron_bug @cwebber @danielcassidy oh, this is not the only and not the worst problem with Google, man.
just the next shit bomb they prepared for free software.

@iron_bug @cwebber exactly. There are actual real problems. There's no reason to think this is one.

@cwebber @cathal looks like this is targeting electron from getting Google credentials?

@cwebber imagine being so f'ed up as to explicitly discriminate against text browsers, despite the fact that most already support most of the important web security mechanisms but not js — which is known to be the biggest web security liability of them all.
@clacke I doubt they can distinct it from usual Chromium on their servers.
but they can cut the ads blocking API and this will make it much more difficult to maintain independent browsers.

@cwebber no this is based as it will finally kill off ie9

@cwebber I especially like this bit: The browser must identify itself clearly in the User-Agent. The browser must not try to impersonate another browser like Chrome or Firefox.

Oh, you mean a browser should impersonate other browsers like this “Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/51.0.2704.103 Safari/537.36” ?

@cwebber only a matter of time until they announce Firefox no longer qualifies.

@cwebber It's an application platform now. Either you ship all the insane features required to make them work, or you're out.

Sign in to participate in the conversation

The social network of the future: No ads, no corporate surveillance, ethical design, and decentralization! Own your data with Mastodon!