If you ever wanted a better way to watch your favorite YouTube videos, this post is for you.
By default, YouTube collects data as much as possible from you. What you watched, in which time you watched it, what you searched on Google before watching, where you stopped the video, your IP, your machine, what kind of videos interests you the most (so you can spend more time on the platform) etc.
That is the nature of Google because their business model is based on tracking you and testing what is the most effective way to sell products for you. That makes advertisers happy, but it's quite dangerous.
It may sound silly, but information is power. The more someone knows about you, the more power over you that person has.
Google knows more about you than close friends and you don't care because it is a company and it seems like it will never go wrong.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Even if the company never passes the data to any enemy of yours, that data can leak since large companies are constant targets for attackers.
Especially if you live in a country where the government has dictatorial tendencies, your data can easily be requested and you can be sure that any big tech will hand over the data without even an appeal.
Android - How to privately watch YouTube on it
To Get started, you can download the latest APK HERE. After that, the app should already open correctly for you:
There is a issue however. You may notice that the videos are lagging/not loading sometimes. That happens because the default instances of piped are usually under high load, so the video is slow to load.
To fix that, I would recommend you to use my piped instance. Here is the data to use it:
Frontend URL: https://piped.theselfhosting.art API URL: https://pipedapi.theselfhosting.art
You can follow these steps in order to change your piped instance:
After that, you should be able to successfully access the Youtube videos without any lag at all. This instance is barely used by me and some close friends. You can also create an account if you want to save things like playlists and subscriptions.
Deskop - How to privately watch YouTube on it
On the Desktop, things are even easier!
You can just access this link directly:
Once you are on the site, you can watch YouTube privately, without lags and without the need of an account.
What benefits do I have using it versus the normal YouTube
- No Ads
- No tracking
- No profile building
- Custom feed (you can choose what to see in the home page)
- You can listen just Audio (very useful when you are on mobile connection)
- You can watch videos with age restriction without a Google Account
- You can read comments and replies to comments
- Dark Mode
Overall, piped is a solid project. I'm very happy to be hosting it and I'm using it daily instead of YouTube.
Are you tracking me while I use your instance?
Not really. This is a example of what I can see:
Due to the nature of web servers, I can see the GET requests. This means that the IP is visible for me as well as the URL what the IP accessed.
The difference from Google is:
- I have no way to associate your IP with anything else
- I don't know if you really watched the video, stopped, or just did a request to test
- This IP won't be sent to anywhere
Believe me or not, but having this general web server log is important. For me, I would just disable all the logs, but since there are people that will try to attack the server, I have to be able to watch the logs when necessary. That will allow me to block an IP of someone trying to DDOs the site and that is all.
I've 0 interest in tracking someone else activities.
Having a more private YouTube Experience is easy. You can use my instance to enjoy a fast performance on a idle server. You can also use anyone else instance if you don't trust me for some reason.
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