How to disable media auto-play for websites in Safari on Mac

You know how it is when you’re browsing the web, and you land on a site that starts playing a video immediately? It may be a network news site, a YouTube link, or simply an advertisement. Regardless of what it is, it can be annoying.

Luckily, you can stop the madness in your Safari settings. You can disable the media auto-play of videos for specific sites or for all of them, and here’s how.

Safari AutoPlay Preferences

Access the website settings

This first set of instructions is ideal if you have many tabs open at the same time that you want to adjust.

1) With Safari open, click Safari from your top menu bar.

2) Select Settings or Preferences.

3) Move to the Websites tab.

4) Choose Auto-Play on the left side.

Safari Preferences Websites

Here you should see your Currently Open Websites on top, with any already Configured Websites underneath.

Select your website preferences

Now you have three options for auto-play that you can choose from per website.

  • Allow All Auto-Play: This means that no matter what, if the website offers a video when you land on its page, it will automatically play.
  • Stop Media with Sound: This option will allow only those videos without sound to play automatically.
  • Never Auto-Play: This means that no videos can automatically play, regardless if they have sound or not.

You can configure each website you visit separately by going to those in the center of the window and making your choice from the drop-down box.

Once you configure a specific site’s auto-play option and close its tab, that site will be listed under Configured Websites.

AutoPlay Configured Websites

If you would like an auto-play option to apply to other websites, go to the bottom of the window and choose it from the When visiting other websites drop-down box. This setting will not apply to those you adjust individually that fall under Configured Websites. Rather, it will apply to all other sites you visit.

Visiting Other Sites AutoPlay

Use Settings for This Website

As you are browsing the web, you can change the auto-play setting for a specific site another way. This is convenient if you only have one tab open rather than a list of currently open websites, as described above.

1) With Safari open on the page you want to adjust, click Safari from your menu.

2) Select Settings for the website name.

3) In the pop-up window that appears, move to Auto-Play and make your selection from the drop-down box.

Settings for This Website in Safari

If you configure certain websites this way, they will then appear in your Configured Websites list in your Safari Preferences, as discussed above.

Remove Configured Websites

If you change your mind about configuring certain websites, you can easily remove them from the list. If no sites are listed under Configured Websites, then the When visiting other websites setting will apply to all those you visit.

1) Select the website you want to remove under Configured Websites.

2) Click the Remove button at the bottom. The website should disappear from your list immediately.

Remove Configured AutoPlay Website

This is a handy feature with a decent amount of flexibility. For instance, if you go to a direct YouTube link, you may want that video to play right away. But you might not want that to happen when you visit a news site. This is when configuring certain websites is useful. Do you use Safari’s auto-play options?

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