After CNN started a campaign to ban Alex Jones from the online world, YouTube was hit with a boycott by ad agencies for promoting conspiracy videos. In response, YouTube now displays clips from TV shows in the results while videos uploaded by ordinary YouTubers have been demoted.
Recently, I was trying to find the funny video of Joe Biden posted by US president Donald Trump and found that YouTube has censored the video. In its place are numerous TV reports talking about the Trump twitter message.
If you check the results page of YouTube search, you will find a “filters” drop-down list. In this list, YouTube will allow ordering the results by “relevance” and “view count”. The default is “relevance” and by YouTube’s definition, it means TV shows are always better than videos uploaded by ordinary YouTube users. To make YouTube search work like earlier, you need to select “Video” under “Type” and “View Count” under “Sort By”.
Censored YouTube search: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=trump+trolls+biden
Uncensored YouTube search: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=trump+trolls+biden&sp=CAMSAhAB
To make this easy, I created a custom YouTube search engine XML file based on the OpenSearch standard at:
Save this file as YouTube-Search.xml and copy it to your ‘searchplugins’ directory in the Firefox profile directory.
This is not a real solution, as Google censorship is very open when it comes to Trump.
Blocks video ads too.
In this version, the script will
- disable ads, including video ads. If a video ad is loaded, a new window will be opened until an ad-free video is loaded. You will have to manually close the other tabs. I am not sure how effective it is in blocking text ads, I use a ad-blocking HOSTS file and I don’t see ads most of the time.
- pause all videos automatically. This is useful if you open multiple videos in different tabs and if they all start playing simultaneously, you will hear the biblical Tower of Babel.
- turn off autoplay button
- add an RSS link next to the channel name and in a LINK tag in the HEAD section of the HTML so that the browser can activate its RSS button (if available).
- delete “recommended for you” videos
- unhide description
- display all comments
- change profile link to videos page
- change region to US. By default, YouTube pages defaults to India and all the results are tilted in favour of Indian Youtubers. The problems with the Indian Youtubers is that their videos have low-volume voice and high-volume music. By changing to US, the video results are mostly from English-speaking countries. They are not enamoured by the need to pepper their videos with loud interludes of the same copyright-free music.
The script supports Firefox-based browser up to version 36. Newer Firefox versions should use a UserAgent (UA) spoofer add-on. YouTube loads a lighter version of the YouTube page for older browsers. This script will require the GreaseMonkey add-on to be executed by the Firefox browser.
For non-YouTube pages, I have a more generic autoplay video autostopper script. It will also work on YouTube pages if the @exclude line is removed.
This browser user js is also available at