Is there a Safari extension or something that will block the Javascript modal popups that are now ubiquitous (soliciting mailing list signups)?

Failing that, are there extensions that will simply block sites that utilize these modal popups? I'm ok with any of these options:

  1. Block the modal popup
  2. Close the tab immediately if a popup happens
  3. Block/remove the site from search results

There are so many sites these days that I have no reason to spend time on a site that utilizes popups. I'd rather not know they even exist so if an extension can remove them from DuckDuckGo results that would be outstanding.

  • 1
    I assumed you are on macOS, please edit if needed.
    – bmike
    Mar 23, 2019 at 17:31
  • @ankiiiiiii How you might fight it on Safari for mac and safari for iOS will differ quite dramatically. I’ve asked the OP to provide a specific site so we all can be more clear what is being asked. Blocking everything is clearly not possible - it comes down to specific implementations how I see it. Of course, feel free to answer any way you see forward. There can be many answers here and even a wrong answer (perhaps mine is wrong) can still help others.
    – bmike
    Mar 24, 2019 at 22:10

2 Answers 2


...are there extensions that will simply block sites that utilize these modal popups?

The problem here is that they are not pop-ups as what you are traditionally used to. They are basically HTML elements that are overlayed over the parent HTML document.

Block the modal popup

What makes this extremely difficult to block is that site functionality may depend on it. Some modals may contain nonsense while others might have important information (i.e. shopping cart, contact form, etc.)

Chrome/Firefox has a plugin called Behind the Overlay but results are spotty at best. I don't know of any for Safari.

Closing the tab

This really wouldn't be workable since this isn't a popup of a new window/tab - it's an HTML element in the same document. Closing the tab would close out the whole session on that webpage.

Block site from search results

This is a function of the search engine and not of Safari. Most HTML 5 compliant sites now use these modals so blocking the sites would be counter productive. However, if there is a site you wish to ignore because of their use of modals, you can exclude it in your search query (Bing, Google, DuckDuckGo)

Macbook Pro -apple.com
  • Astute observations about how little control HTML and JS give us. Even less ability to get a search engine to not show results that are relevant to the content as opposed to annoyance factor. I think we have to collectively pay people to go on the offense with content blockers.
    – bmike
    Mar 23, 2019 at 18:08

I’m a huge fan of a couple paid content blockers on iOS. On Mac, there’s a clear winner in my book - Stop The Madness.

There is a free trial if you are not sure it’s well worth your spare change. Ghostery used to be good as well, but I’m all in on paid blockers for iOS and macOS. It does many things in addition to suppressing email pop ups, giving you back control of bloated and even some not bloated sites.

  • I don't see anything in their documents/website saying they block these javascript email signup popups. It would be a huge selling point and it seems odd that they would not mention it.
    – aris
    Mar 24, 2019 at 20:16
  • Provide one site that you wish to block and I’d be happy to check. Your question really isn’t specific enough to offer anything except for general guesses what elements or portions of a web page you find problematic @aris
    – bmike
    Mar 24, 2019 at 22:08
  • StopTheMadness does not seem to do anything in the overlay department. Quite disappointing. Check pbs.org/wgbh/frontline and breakingdefense.com for examples. As Mac blocking apps go, it's very expensive: $9 right now. May 13, 2019 at 13:04
  • @bmike I understand that the UK cookie warnings come from various and different programming methods. Does StopTheMadness block some or any of them? Aug 3, 2019 at 18:21

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