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submitted 2 weeks ago by [email protected] to c/[email protected]
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[-] [email protected] 140 points 2 weeks ago

My second proposal — and this is a wild one — is that promotional notifications should just not be allowed. Or you can opt in to them if you desperately want to hear from the Starbucks app every single day, but you should have to go out of your way to do that and should not be the default behavior when you choose “allow notifications.” Just an idea!

The author calls out the Starbucks app here, but doesn't mention how blatantly dark-patterned its notifications really are. Android allows apps to set up multiple notification channels, so you can selectively prioritize (or, more often, mute or block) notifications based on their content. Starbucks uses this feature... to create a single channel called "Promotions & order status". You wanted to know when your order's ready? Fuck you and your concentration, get double stars today!

I appreciate the notification controls Android gives me, and I use them aggressively. If an app pushes a notification that doesn't actually require my attention, I block that channel, and if it does it again, I block notifications for the whole app. I agree with the author, though: I shouldn't need to do that.

[-] [email protected] 52 points 2 weeks ago

The use of a single channel should be against the rules for commerce apps.

[-] [email protected] 25 points 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago)

They'd probably get around that by having a 'Promotions and Order status' channel and a random / unused one like an 'App update available' channel. Promotional notifications should just really be banned.

[-] [email protected] 16 points 2 weeks ago

It should be enough for the Play Store to require any promotional notifications to go to an exclusively promotional channel for users to manage as they please.

Next stage, would be a "report notification" option, so Google could suspend the app for spamming. That would curb the dark pattern behavior quite quickly.

[-] [email protected] 12 points 2 weeks ago

Why do you feel the need to install an app for a coffee shop?

[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 weeks ago

Not OP but I often get 50% off promo for any beverage from Starbucks app.

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[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 weeks ago

Email subscriptions also sometimes have that, with bonus points for several vague and similar sounding categories, and emails not mentioning what category they're in.

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[-] [email protected] 77 points 2 weeks ago

I have a simple rule. If I install an app and it shows me any notification I don't want to see, I immediately block it from having permission to do that.

[-] [email protected] 22 points 2 weeks ago

Not everyone has figured you can do that by long pressing the offending notification

[-] [email protected] 16 points 2 weeks ago

Same... Have done for ages now. Don't know how anyone puts up with the default behaviour.

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[-] [email protected] 71 points 2 weeks ago

For me, apps do not get to notify me unless it’s time sensitive.

The problem is when my food delivery app, or LinkedIn sends me ads when I just want messages.

It’s annoying to not be able to only receive messages.

[-] [email protected] 74 points 2 weeks ago

Apps get a one strike rule. The minute I get a notification I don't want, that app doesn't get to send me notifications anymore

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 weeks ago

I use Tasker to filter out notifications

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[-] [email protected] 34 points 2 weeks ago

Both on Android, and iOS, opting out of notifications solves most of the problems. You can do all on your own time without constant nagging, and leave notifications on for the communication channels you really need.

However, what I hate with passion are shopping and delivery apps that suffer with disabled notifications (I don’t know when things arrive, and that would ideally be good to know within seconds), but enabled notifications mean that there would be a lot of spam notifications about ordering and buying more.

[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 weeks ago

Yeah, no way to lose my trust faster than abusing your notification privileges to send me spam.

[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 weeks ago

Some apps let you customize notifications, some let the OS customize them... some get muted, and some uninstalled.

For example, Amazon lets you keep the account and delivery notifications, but disable the promotional ones.

[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 weeks ago

AliExpress is the worst at this. Which category should I disable? AliExpress, aliexpress, Chat or message push? And even if I figured it out, there's no way to stop store spammers from sending you useless messages constantly, detracting from actual sellers with questions.

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[-] [email protected] 31 points 2 weeks ago

If something's going to try to grab my attention, it had better be worth my while. I block as many notifications as I can, both on my phone and my computer. I also try to avoid using apps for things unless I have to.

[-] [email protected] 12 points 2 weeks ago

But don't you want to open this website in our app so that we can better track you?

God I hate reddits mobile website, especially when you try to view an nsfw post

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 weeks ago

Swap the “www” in the url for “old”. Desktop site but it doesn’t stop you viewing NSFW content.

[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 weeks ago

Just abandon the site altogether. They do have good content but they're user hostile.

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[-] [email protected] 30 points 2 weeks ago

On android long press a notification and it'll show you which category of notification it is from that app, with the ability to disable just that one category if desired. E.g. advertisements and feedback reminders

[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 weeks ago

Some apps don't export the category, but still let you disable it from inside the app. In my book, they get a close pass.

[-] [email protected] 29 points 2 weeks ago

On Android you need to opt in to notifications for every app you install. Just opt out :)

Or, be like me and keep your phone on do not disturb(except calls from contacts). Doing this was one of the most significant quality of life improvements for me over the last few years.

[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 weeks ago

Yeah that's what I've done. I've gotten very picky about which apps I allow to notify me of things. A week or two of turning off all the ones you don't want and your phone gets quiet real quick.

[-] [email protected] 14 points 2 weeks ago

Notification controls on android are pretty great in my experience.

Most apps (good ones anyway) breakdown different types of notifications, and you can turn off the ones you don't want. And if they don't, you can just turn off all notifications for that app entirely.

It all works pretty well.

[-] [email protected] 14 points 2 weeks ago

If you're on IOS, the Focus feature is great. I use it primarily for sleep to turn off all notifications except for calls (in case of emergencies). But you can basically configure multiple profiles with different notification settings. Also, whenever I install a new app on my phone, I turn notifications off unless it's a time sensitive app like a messaging app.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 weeks ago

My work phone is an iPhone and I love this feature. The moment it's past work hours I no longer get buzzed for any notifications, and I only see direct messages on the home screen

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago)

Android's Do Not Disturb feature is also like this. You only get notifications from calls, alarms and apps you specifically allow.

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[-] [email protected] 13 points 2 weeks ago

My rule has always been people can notify me, but bots/apps cannot. If I see a notification not from a person, it gets disabled. If it's something I can practically do on a website, I don't download the app.

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[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago)

Install app. Start app. "Allow notifications?" No.

Does iOS not do this?

Apps that I do allow notifications: when they become annoying I go to the notification, long hold > settings > notification categories. If they only have one category and don't let me fine tune then I don't need that app or just don't need notifications from it. Back to settings I have other ways to customize that can make them less annoying like silence them.

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 weeks ago

The article has some valid points about wanting certain kinds of notifications from an app, and hating the spam notifications those apps send.

However, iOS does indeed allow you to grant or deny an app notifications permission on first launch, and my default is to always deny.

The only apps I allow notifications for are phone, calendar, messages, my tasks, and my automations (shortcuts and some associated apps)

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[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago)

I don't really have any issues with it. Samsung has very fine-grained controls and most apps I simply don't grant notification permissions at all. Also I put every single chat group in Whatsapp, Telegram etc on Mute by default which helps a lot against overload.

By the way, I give it a year or so by when phones can run a local AI to automatically filter the notifications you're interested in.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 weeks ago

Yeah I feel like they neglected to show how much more of a problem on iOS this is than Android.

On Android apps typically have their push notifications divided into different types and can almost always turn off the marketing notifications for an app while leaving the important ones on.

I dont see even half of these notifications on Android.

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[-] [email protected] 10 points 2 weeks ago

BuzzKill is great for wrangling your notifications. Match a word or phrase and group them, snooze them, set special vibration patterns, whatever.

[-] [email protected] 9 points 2 weeks ago

I turned off all notifications for every app except Signal

[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 weeks ago

I do a similar thing, enabling only the apps I want notifications, and I run "adb shell settings put global heads_up_notifications_enabled 0" to stop those annoying popups interrupting me. This should have been an option available in the configs, imo.

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[-] [email protected] 9 points 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago)

You guys still check notifications? I have Infinite Scroll of notifications I never care enough about to spend time on doing anything about.

[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 weeks ago

That would be anxiety personified for me

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[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 weeks ago

This article seems strangely lacking in how it wants this goal to be achieved.

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[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 weeks ago

Just turn them off? That's what I do, my phone never annoys me.

[-] [email protected] 7 points 2 weeks ago

For Android users Buzzkill is also great for apps that don't have granular enough notification settings. You can set up rules to make it automatically dismiss the notifications you don't want to see.

[-] [email protected] 6 points 2 weeks ago

I realized at somepoint I was ignoring everything on my phone because of the number of notifications. Now I disable EVERYTHING and only leave important stuff. I wish this was the default.

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[-] [email protected] 5 points 2 weeks ago

The Amazon app, which for many years has faithfully executed its legitimate role as an app that helps me order stuff and track those orders, recently sent me a notification to let me know it thinks I might like some JBL headphones.

It made me furious. How dare they?

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this post was submitted on 02 Apr 2024
182 points (100.0% liked)

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