It's Foss and Youtube

I repeat what I have said on several occasions; that I find It’s FOSS perhaps the most helpful site on the web. I suppose that interest in open source software does not automatically lead to dislike of the computer giants who control the internet, but I expect there are a good many like me who are doing their best to avoid google, amazon, social media and the like. Consequently, I was disappointed that the latest newsletter suggested getting more information on KDE Plasma by going to YouTube. I thought perhaps I could just visit anonymously, but no, up popped the usual Google notice that I had to accept their cookies and adjust to their privacy policies, which I have long refused to do. I think there should be an attempt to boycott rather than suggest such sites.

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This is a proxy layer that solves your problem:

https://invidious.xyz/

I think there are also alternatives available, but I just know this one.

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I completely agree with you. Under German law visited webpages must inform you about their cookie usage. Generally you are offered the choice to accept all of their cookies or your own choices to be saved. I for one have all tracking cookies disabled and only the technically necessary enabled. These last months I have noticed that more and more companies are no longer offering a personal choice, if you want to visit their site you must accept all or go look elsewhere. I have also come upon many websites that write that only necessary cookies are used but infact employ dozens of tracking and ad cookies.

Ute

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Honestly, I don’t see the reason to boycott any site that uses cookies e.g. YouTube or any other major video platform. All modern browsers offer the feature of private browsing and to delete stored data.

Also, these sites provide a service to the user, a service that needs to be paid for and if you don’t want to charge your users, you have to place ads. However, random ads are pretty pointless. It doesn’t make sense to present women with penis enlargement ads or people who never read a book with ads for these. Also, as problematic Google’s enormous amount of collected personal data might be, their policies are pretty transparent, compared to other data giants.

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May I suggest a look at https://www.computerworld.com/article/3528554/10-steps-to-smarter-google-account-security.html. I am not going to support an organisation that invades privacy to a calamitous degree and has pretty much succeeded in gaining world-wide control, whilst avoiding paying its share of taxes everywhere.

I understand the sentiment.

The Plasma article has the same video embed from Vimeo. Vimeo is ad-free, distraction free and a lot more privacy friendly for videos.

Alternatively, you may watch all our content on LBRY: https://lbry.tv/$/invite/@itsfoss:0

The reason why I mentioned the YouTube video in the newsletter is because more people are familiar with YouTube and many prefer it over other video hosting platforms.

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Great, didn’t know this one existed. Maybe it should be promoted more.

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Hello Mina,

I think I need to clarify. That websites presenting information/Media etc etc without charging a fee to view the content, need some sort of revenue to cover costs is logical. With those websites I am more thanprepared to accept cookies . What annoys me are websites that sell products and still insist on tracking me and using ad cookies. Then I always make the decision to buy elsewhere.

Ute

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Thank you Akito. I wonder if you could give a bit more information. You suggest a link that I have tried, but I’m not certain how to use it or what it is supposed to do. I apologise for being a bit thick.

I recently volunteered with the Red Cross. They use Microsoft Teams. I tried the web browser interface but it won’t allow me to see screen shares from the instructors. I went to troubleshoot after the first class and discovered they demand several domains to be whitelisted that I have blacklisted in order to access all the features. I used the online utility BlackLight to check those domains and found dozens of cookies, trackers and a web based keylogger as well as two sites that were not accessible to BlackLight. One can’t even be opened in a browser but it is a Whois listed domain. What the hell bag of … tricks is Microsoft hiding in an inaccessible domain??
Here’s BlackLight; https://themarkup.org/blacklight
Here are the domains that Microsoft demands I whitelist in order to ‘enjoy’ the full features of Teams;
[.]microsoft.com 13 ad trackers, 34 third party cookies & could be monitoring keystrokes. Keylogging is a security risk I will not allow on my computer.
[
.]microsoftonline.com So heavily layered or so full of redirects that Blacklight’s results can’t be returned. I don’t trust it for obvious reasons.
[.]teams.skype.com 1 ad tracker & 4 third party cookies
[
.]teams.microsoft.com 7 third party cookies through login redirect
[.]sfbassets.com This site cannot be reached by Blacklight or by browser. Why? According to the Whois registry this site does exist, although it can’t be accessed. I don’t trust it, again, for obvious reasons. What are they hiding that could be worse than ad trackers, cookies and keylogging?? (https://wa-com.com/sfbassets.com)
[
.]skypeforbusiness.com 16 ad trackers, 48 third party cookies, could be monitoring keystrokes and communicates with Facebook, LinkedIn and several other sites.
That’s a total of 30 ad trackers, 96 third party cookies and at least 2 keyloggers plus whatever else they’ve kept hidden on two inaccessible domains.
I’m probably going to rescind my offer to volunteer since I can’t access their training without compromising my computer and my computer activities to the likes of Microsoft.
I use LMDE currently as well as having used other Linux builds over the years, and I’ve refused to use Microsoft products as much as possible since 2007. I installed the Teams desktop client to see if that would work but it won’t offer me any access to options and every time I open it, it adds itself to my Startup Programs list, which I promptly remove of course. I purged it from my system after trying several times to get it to work.
Sorry Red Cross, I don’t think this is going to work for me.

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