Why I disabled advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection in Safari
October 23 2023
Advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection is a new feature of Safari 17that’s enabled by default in private browsing on iOS and macOS . I analyzed the details of this feature after it was introduced back in June at Apple’s
Worldwide Developers Conference(WWDC). Despite the fact that I’m obviously interested in protection from tracking and fingerprinting, I’ve decided to disable the new feature in Safari .
I have tworeasons. First , my Safari extension StopTheMadness is better in a number of ways and basically makes advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection redundant.
Second, "If this page is not displaying as expected, you can reduce advanced privacy protections which may resolve issues."
Every time I reload a web page. Every. Damn. Time. And I can’t find a way to stop the warning. Reverse engineering Safari, I don’t believe there is a way. Back in July , I filed feedback with Apple : (FB12568629) Permanently suppress popup "If this page is not displaying as expected, you can reduce advanced privacy protections which may resolve issues." Unfortunately, nothing was done with my feedback.
It feels like there’s nobody left at Applewho cares—or is allowed to care—about user interface design. The company’s priorities come from the top, and in stark contrast to the previous CEO Steve Jobs , the current CEO Tim Cook does not care. I’m sure that Cook cares about many things, but not about user interface design. Through countless personnel decisions since taking over in 2011 , Cook has put his personal stamp on Apple , in the process stamping out the user-friendly design sense that made Apple famous. It’s a shame, because few other tech companies care about design, and now Apple is just another tech company, not special except for its size and revenue.
A few days ago, I blogged about how Safari 17 finally added an Always Allow option to its long-standing dialog that asks, "Do you want to allow this website to open [app name]?" In Safari 16 and earlier the dialog was shown every time, and the only options were Cancel and Allow. My search of the web indicates that the dialog was introduced in Safari 10.0.2, back in 2016 . Thus, it took Apple
seven yearsto allow the user to opt out of these annoying warnings. I’m not going to wait another seven years to opt out of the advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection warnings, so I’m opting out of advanced tracking and fingerprinting protection entirely. Perhaps I’ll take another look at the feature in 2030 .