Earlier today I ditched Google Chrome, my browser of choice since it was in Beta. Almost.
The problem and cause of this, is Google themselves. A while ago, the one huge thing Firefox had over Chrome was extensions. So Google created a beautiful framework, I loved it when it launched. Mail Notifiers, Ad Blockers, URL Shorteners, and YouTube Downloaders if you want to know.
Recently, Google played an Apple card, and made extensions only available through their approval based Web Store – and this is my problem.
Google don’t give a shit about the consumer, they only want money. Whilst some Ad Blockers are still available, many of them have been removed from Chrome. I have actually set up a filter for YouTube to display ads, so the hard-working YouTubers get the money they deserve, whilst annoying spam sites don’t give me fake download buttons, etc.
But the one thing they have irradicated, is the YouTube downloader. I see the view of preventing piracy, but I use it for educational resource purposes. I have not pirated any TV Show since 2007. I have spent over £300+ paying Apple through their annoying DRM inconvient service, but hopefully, someday, this will change.
For my Media Studies coursework, I am allowed 20% of found footage, let’s say an explosion, something I can’t do myself. For my English Language coursework, I am required to find audio-visual content to analyse lingustically. I’m not pirating video, I don’t burn the shit Mr Cameron says or News Reports to a DVD and sell them. Does Google give a flying f**k, no. Money.
Firefox is free. Firefox is open. Firefox has all my favourite extensions still, so I’ve got, quite frankly, some beautiful Ad Blockers that I can customise fully, YouTube downloaders that have resolution and file format options, and it’s wonderful.
A few years ago, I couldn’t stand Firefox, it was sluggish and ugly, Chrome was fast and beautiful. Whilst Firefox still isn’t quite as fast and pretty as Chrome, it’s come a long way. And surely it can only get better as developers grow more and more angry with the money snatching corporation.
Firefox has truly proved itself as the browser of the free and open internet, and I fully support it. I know Opera is also independent, use whatever you wish, but just remember, Microsoft, Apple and Google have their own agendas, and they will and, in some cases, already are abusing your rights using because you’re using their browsers.
Luckily, Google isn’t as smart as I thought. They have a developer open-source program called Chromium, Browsers based off Chrome. I’m now using RockMelt, which integrates all social media (Facebook, Twitter, others too I assume), and, best of all, isn;t locked the the Google Web Store, so my YouTube downloader is back, and I’m practically running Chrome!
Whilst these social features of RockMelt are cool, they’re a bit tacky, but not to worry, I can turn them off in a heartbeat… result! So yeah, Google Chrome can go suck it, Firefox is still quite ugly and slow, but Chromium and open-source development, ironically based off copying the work of others (for the most part), can thrive!