The reviews for Avengers: Endgame —the final installment in a decade-long run of Marvel films—have already landed. The movie itself hits thousands of theaters Thursday night. All of which means that the internet is about to become a very treacherous place for anyone who doesn't want to know the ending before they've seen it for themselves. Fortunately, ridding the internet of spoilers is a snap.
Let's assume you already know the obvious ways to keep Endgame unspoiled: Don't read any reviews, even the ones marked as spoiler-free. Don't read any comments. Tell the group chat to quarantine their Thanos takes. Again, these may seem obvious, but given that you've waited 10 years for this moment, it's worth taking extra precautions.
Remember, too, that these tips apply to anything you want to remain fresh, whether it's Avengers or Westworld or Game of Thrones or Season 2 of Pretty Little Liars. It's the next-best thing to getting off the internet entirely.
Mute It Good
Twitter contains a multitude of horrors. Tentpole spoilers rank low on the list. Still, it's where a good number of people—WIRED readers particularly—might be mostly likely to encounter Avengers: Endgame plot details from some squawky socializer. For that, you've got the Mute function.
As the name implies, Twitter's Mute option lets you banish any tweets that mention the words, hashtags, or names you specify. To use it in a browser, click on your avatar in the upper-right corner, then Settings and privacy. From there, go to Muted words, click Add, and start entering Endgame-related phrases one at a time. (My personal list currently includes: "Avengers," "Endgame," "Thanos," "Marvel," "#AvengersEndgame," and "quantum," in case the quantum realm plays a major role in the denouement. I suspect it's not enough, but it's a start.) Conveniently, you can also set a timer for how long you want to mute each entry: forever, 24 hours, seven days, or 30 days. You can also specify whether you want to weed out those references from your home timeline, your notifications, or both.
And TweetDeck fans, please be aware that while muting other users is a universal action, muting words, phrases, and hashtags on Twitter prime will not carry over, and vice versa. You need to do it both places. So fire up a new TweetDeck tab, and click on the gear icon in the lower left corner, just above your avatar. From there, go to Settings > Mute, and once again enter your Endgame keywords.
You can't entirely bulletproof your timeline, no matter how actively you mute. Someone could still tweet a spoilery screengrab, or somehow misspell Wakanda and give the whole thing away. (Note: I have no idea if Wakanda relates in any significant way to the Endgame plot.) But the more potential giveaways you block out, the better chance you have of making it to the theater fresh.
Chrome extensions can be risky from a security perspective, and they often need all kinds of invasive permissions to do their jobs. But! They are also wonderful and magical and can make your life a million times easier. Or in this case, they can go a long way toward clearing the internet of spoilers.
With those privacy caveats in mind, you’ve got a few options to work with. There's Spoiler Protection 2.0 and Unspoiler, both of which act as omnibus nuclear options; the former even blocks out entire articles, based on they keywords you feed it.
There are more platform-specific solutions as well, depending on where you spend your time and where your blabbiest friends hang out. For Facebook, try Social Fixer, available on Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera. As we've noted before , Social Fixer gives you all kinds of control over your Facebook experience, like limiting the number of posts that load automatically. But it also has powerful filtering tools that will expel Avengers: Endgame from your News Feed completely. Again, have your keywords handy.
As for YouTube, well, maybe just stay off of YouTube for a while. But if that's not an option, Video Blocker lets you, well, block videos, channels, and comments based on keywords.
In fact, speaking of comments, you can nuke them across a wide variety of sites and platforms with the aptly named Shut Up extension, which you should probably consider doing even outside the spoiler context.
Please, please note that Chrome and Firefox extensions will only help you in your browser, and on your laptop or desktop. Within apps and on mobile generally, you're toast. There are some tools, like Twitter's mute or Facebook's relatively new Keyword Snooze, that can help you traipse through the minefields, but in general, try to stay off your phone as much as possible. Which, again, you should maybe be trying to do anyway .
And there you have it! Remember that these tools won't guarantee a spoiler-free existence any more than an axe in the chest did the Mad Titan's defeat. But they can at least give you a fighting chance.
- The quietly lucrative business of donating human eggs
- Kitty Hawk, flying cars, and the challenges of “going 3D”
- Tristan Harris vows to fight “human downgrading ”
- A “blockchain bandit” guesses private keys to score
- Move over, San Andreas: There’s a new fault in town
- 🏃🏽♀️Want the best tools to get healthy? Check out our Gear team's picks for the best fitness trackers , running gear (including shoes and socks ), and best headphones .
- 📩 Get even more of our inside scoops with our weekly Backchannel newsletter