When will Shields include finer-grain controls?

I continue to run into problems with Brave’s all-or-nothing approach to Shields, and would like to know what the status is on developing finer-grained controls.

Today’s example: Yahoo Mail has started soft-walling access if ads are blocked. I don’t mind turning off enough blockers to allow ads through for this site, but I want to continue blocking trackers, etc. With Brave Shields, this is impossible.

I’d rather not install another ad/cookie/tracker blocking extension on top of what Brave has built in, but that appears to be my only choice if I want to keep using Brave.

I know this has come up before, but those conversations seem to have petered out, and the proposed solutions (“allow once”) don’t really address the problem.

Ideally, for me anyway, Brave Shields would work like Ghostery — with the option of fine-grained, clearly categorized in layman’s terms (unlike uBlock Origin, et al), lists of blocked elements that can be turned on/off by the user.

Built-in Shields are fantastic, and one of my primary reasons for Brave being my daily driver, but the all-or-nothing approach, while it was OK while Brave was still in its early stages, needs to mature to where users can protect themselves while choosing which elements to allow.


While I generally agree with your sentiments about more granular control of shields, Brave does a commendable job of balancing privacy with compatibility. However…

… my experience with Yahoo Mail is completely different as I experience no anti-adblocker popups, and this is with aggressive setting enabled.

I’m curious if you’re using any additional privacy extensions as some of these will trigger Yahoo Mail popups.

FWIW, while the Brave team does a great job managing the blocklists, it seems most of their energy goes towards the Brave-delivered ad model, Rewards and blockchain affiliates.

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Sorry so long to reply. No additional privacy extensions — because I absolutely agree with you that “Brave does a commendable job of balancing privacy with compatibility.”

However, Brave fails when there’s a blocked element that is needed, because without granular controls, to use that one element, Brave users have to give up all protection by turning shields OFF.

As for Brave’s ad model, I’m all for allowing through/enabling vetted ads that don’t invade privacy or kill page-load times. I was part of a project that tried to make ads more acceptable and personalized without invasion of privacy AND drive revenue through voluntary payments (it was kind of a more automated Patreon + Brave’s advertising without the browser), but sadly we were too early to market and too underfunded.


@Mattches is there a roadmap for finer-grained Shields control so users can, for example, unblock ads for a site without unblocking everything?

@100WattWalrus ,
Unfortunately no we do not have a “roadmap” as it were for this functionality. However, you can view the Shields project board for most (if not all) Shields related issues and features that we’re working on presently:

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Thanks for the info and link.

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@Mattches Just want to add my vote for this as well.

You may recall that I can’t use Hangouts without Shields down. In fact, I routinely forget to disable Shields before trying to make a call, invariably then finding that the party on the other end can’t hear me. (Followed, after the other party hangs up, by my turning Shields off and then making the call again.)

With granular control I could potentially find the offending Shield (no offense to Brave) and disable only that one.

It’s also true that Hangouts will reportedly soon be no more (users will either have to switch to Google Chat or, for voice calls, Google Voice). But the same would apply for current or future access to other websites that break with Shields up.

The conversation I have with myself about once a month:

Brave’s all-or-nothing Shields work great most of the time, but a) I really need fine-grained controls for this thing and that thing, and b) Brave gets really slow when a lot of tabs are open. Maybe it’s time to reconsider my daily-driver browser.

Well, Safari is out because I need multiple user profiles. Firefox + Ghostery (my choice for blocking trackers and ads) is out because while I can launch multiple instances of Firefox, CMD+TABbing between them is not as convenient or as clear as CMD+`-ing between separate profile windows in the same browser. Chromium + Ghostery is out because it’s frequently unstable and unpredictable. Chrome + Ghostery is out because Google. I haven’t given Edge a really good trial, maybe now’s the time — but do I really want to spend all that time setting up my 10 user profiles in Edge when I should be, you know, working?

OK, fine. I’ll stick with Brave and just use one of the others as needed.

(I have a similar conversation every time I try to use a Tor window in Brave. I’ve yet to be able to actually reach a single website using Tor in Brave.)

To me the very best improvement for Brave would be granular control in shields. I run NoScript, and enabling individual scripts lets me learn what is actually breaking a site. This process can be a PIT@, but it is worthwhile to me.
A similar approach in Brave would be great.

I do turn almost everything off when making a purchase, because that has caused me some grief. Then I clear everything with OneClean.

A thought on running other add-ons. I think of it (them) as another layer(s) of protection. I use Privacy Badger, NoScript, DDG Privacy Essentials, DecentralEyes, and Privacy Manager. This may sound like it would be a nightmare to administer, but it’s not.

Another idea would be ‘clear history’ without having to open the control panel. I use OneClean to deal with that missing piece.

I also run Clear URLs and 1Password on a late 2012 Macbook Pro, 16Gb 2.6Gh. I notice no performance issues with Brave. Probably it would be snappier without that load of extensions, but it’s quite fast enough with them even when the number of Tabs exceeds the toolbar.

Now, we just need AdNauseum. :wink:

Thanks, Brave.

But, really, P I T A without the spaces is not allowed?

I’m coming back to this thread with another example of why Brave’s all-or-nothing approach is bad for users and bad for sites.

Today I was visiting a small-time rural news site. I wanted to allow ads on this site so they could get some revenue, but in Brave that’s impossible without also allowing trackers and social-media garbage.

Every day I get closer and closer to abandoning Brave because of this issue. (Or, more absurdly, turning off shields and installing Ghostery.)

Here’s a great example of why this is a problem and why Brave Shields all-or-nothing approach is NOT helpful. Attached is a screenshot showing the “allow adds” overlay at the LA Times. With Brave Shields, my only choices are to 1) Not read this article, 2) Subscribe to the LA Times, or 3) Not only allow ads, but allow the whole kit-and-caboodle of ads, cookies, trackers, etc. — of which there are 31 on this page, according to Shields.

This makes me want to go for option #4: Switch to a different browser and use Ghostery.

Returning to this thread after another frustrating experience with Brave Shields — I was on a site where I wanted to give feedback on the content, but the feedback button wouldn’t work.

Instead of being able to open the Shields UI, and unblock just the one item I needed, I had to take down my shields completely, allowing in all the trackers and all the cookies, just to get one feature working again.

I love Brave, but THIS NEEDS TO GET FIXED. It’s ridiculous for this browser to have such great protection, but when one little thing doesn’t work, Brave forces users to pull down their pants completely.

I shouldn’t need a second cookie/tracker blocker extension when I use Brave, but that’s what I’m forced to do because of Brave’s utter failure to give users the controls they need.

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