Autoplaying Tabs Are the Worst: Here’s How to Prevent Them

Bryan Clark 15-10-2015

Nothing is more infuriating than opening up several tabs then frantically searching for the one that’s blaring an auto-playing video that you never asked for. Everyone hates them, yet webmasters keep doing it for some reason.


Today, we’re going to put a stop to it.

If You’re Using Chrome


In the address bar, type:


and press Enter.

Scroll down to Plug-ins and click Let me choose when to run plugin content. This forces you to click on a video or audio embed before it will start playing. If you want to disable this on only a handful of websites, like YouTube, then you can click the Manage exceptions… button and create a whitelist of exceptions.


If You’re Using Firefox


In the address bar, type:


and press Enter. Look for plugins.click_to_play and set its value to False.

Unfortunately, you can’t manage exceptions like you can in Chrome, but when you visit a website you’ll have the option to allow the autoplay for future visits.

If You’re Using Safari


In any post-Mavericks version of Safari, there’s a built-in feature called Power Saver. To get there, go to Preferences > Advanced and enable the Stop plug-ins to save power check box. You can create exceptions here, just like on Chrome, by clicking the Details box next to it and adding sites to your whitelist.

Did you find this helpful? If you know of any other neat browser tricks, let us know in the comments below.

Image Credit: Ana Blazic Pavlovic via

Related topics: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari Browser.

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  1. Anonymous
    October 17, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    For Opera, go to Settings... and click on Websites (on the left). Find the section entitled Plug-ins. Then you can choose the option that works best for you.

  2. Anonymous
    October 16, 2015 at 6:40 am

    Anyone know how to stop it in Edge?

    • Anonymous
      October 16, 2015 at 2:11 pm

      To the best of my knowledge, this feature isn't supported in Edge at this time.

  3. Anonymous
    October 16, 2015 at 5:53 am

    I prefer to use the built in 'mute tab' feature in Google Chrome. Here's where you can access it, just type this in to the address bar in chrome and click on enable. chrome://flags/#enable-tab-audio-muting

  4. Anonymous
    October 16, 2015 at 5:20 am

    beautiful; short and no more ahstray; to the point!!

  5. Anonymous
    October 15, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    Thanks for this, they used to drive me nuts--though I don't have the problem much anymore. I finally unsubbed from the sites that insisted on using autoplays.

  6. Anonymous
    October 15, 2015 at 1:17 pm

    I can't get this to work for Chrome, is here something missing in your directions?

    • Anonymous
      October 15, 2015 at 1:23 pm

      Fixed it thanks.

      • Bryan Clark
        October 15, 2015 at 5:14 pm

        Cool. Glad you got it working. :)