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I’m surprised they’ve seemingly done nothing to make life harder for ad blockers. For instance they could insert ads directly into the video stream if they detect an ad blocker in use.

Like you, the only reason i can think of is that they don’t want to encourage tech-savvy users to potentially lead the flight to alternative platforms.

It’s exactly that, and they are trying to limit ad blockers a number of times before. As for YouTube, I’m guessing they don’t see it as profitable nor worth doing as it could botch YouTube videos. (There were a number of problems including audio stream playing on one side of your ear rather than both, this problem is still happening with YouTube upload.)

Honestly, it would be freaking hilarious if people end up forking Chrome and obliterate the DRM contents by integrating peer to peer bit torrent services like “Popcorn Time” to combat Widevine DRM.

sseneca
79M

well they do block instances of invidious at times. and it does break sometimes, needing changes upstream.

I think invidious doesn’t use the YouTube API so there isn’t that much they can do. before invidious I used to use Hooktube, but that got C&D’d.

as for youtube-dl… well, youtube-dl works on pretty much every website I’ve tried it on. It’s pretty generic and I think the mitigations YouTube would have to put in place to break it or a tool like it would be at cost of performance etc., which is their primary concern. YouTube is not cheap or easy to run (afaik they still haven’t made any profit from it?) so they don’t need any more hassle.

@geopoliticssuck
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I used to use hooktube as well, but the great thing about invidious is that it’s open source and you can have multiple instances, so if one gets pulled down, you can easily find another

@ufrafecy
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@ajz
79M

Depending on the invidious instance (proxy-ing or not ?) one does connect to googlevideo.com ip addresses. If Google tracks that, then they have a nice database of disobedient people ;-)

@EldritchBoat
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@ajz
39M

The Snopyta instance does not show googlevideo.com in uMatrix.

@ajz
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List of invidious instances : https://github.com/iv-org/invidious/wiki/Invidious-Instances

Didn’t notice before that there is onion choices, nice.

@Echedenyan
39M

Is proxy preference enabled by default?

@EldritchBoat
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@ufrafecy
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@ajz
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Google can still track your ip address and user agent (when using Invidious, and depending on the instance configuration) and add that to their data. Also, if you download videos via youtube-dl the resulting videos will be Google tagged internally anyway. But I can imagine that invidious and the like are tiny fish in the giant money ocean that Google is.

, if you download videos via youtube-dl the resulting videos will be Google tagged internally anyway

What do you mean by “Google tagged internally”?

@ajz
39M

When using console based media players I noticed that files downloaded via Youtube all had “clip info” (sp?) with something like “Google LLC” in it.

@ufrafecy
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@ajz
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nice, thanks

@ufrafecy
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@ajz
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Yes, indeed. And by using youtubedl or invidious one is still indirectly promoting youtube to others. I hope Peertube and others will grow.

@AccessViolation_
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I think it would cost them more to proactively prevent these tools from being used than to just let that small fraction of users use them.

@ufrafecy
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@cvieira
18M

I think its more passive aggressively resisting. If they outright block or ban Invidious, FreeTube, and youtube-dl, then I’d imagine there would be a mass of people leaving the platform. However, they do frequently make subtle changes to the code of YouTube, which means Invidious and youtube-dl need very frequent updates to stay working.

youtube-dl breaks frequently!

@ajz
39M

It is amazing to see how often youtube-dl gets updated. A simple ./youtube-dl -U does the self update.

-U doesn’t work if you installed through package manager I believe!

@ajz
49M

Yes, correct. But you can, alongside of the package install, still fetch the binary and run it as normal user with ./youtube-dl if you like, especially when things are broken for the older version.

@ufrafecy
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I always just do update or wait for an update.

@ufrafecy
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@thegergo02
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@ufrafecy
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Ephera
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I think, it’s actually not that simple. As /u/thegergo02 said, they can change their IP address frequently. And it’s not uncommon for a lot of traffic to come from one IP address, as people might use a proxy to access YouTube or are doing so from within a company where all network traffic is forced through a proxy.

@ufrafecy
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