Flickering screen issue when viewing videos on Reddit (Potential Epilepsy Warning)

I posted about this issue on the Framework subreddit, but I didn’t really receive any solutions. I’m wondering if anyone here may have any ideas as to what is causing this issue and how to fix it.

Link to video - Redditsave.com Help Flashing Screen Bug With Videos On Reddit-esawy57483i81 GIF | Gfycat

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Oh geez, that’s bad… Does it occur exclusively with videos on Reddit, or does it also occur if you watch a video on a site like YouTube or a video file playing in VLC for instance? I have an old ThinkPad that sometimes does something very similar - the display cable occasionally gets pinched when the screen is folded down and then back up, and when it happens, it causes the screen to flicker exactly like this. However, it occurs all the time when the cable is pinched, regardless of what is happening, and can be fixed by slightly adjusting the angle the screen points at. If this issue only occurs when watching videos on Reddit specifically, it’s more likely to be a software issue of some kind, though it would be very strange for only Reddit to suffer from it…

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As far as I can see, it only occurs on Reddit. It also doesn’t happen every time I see a video on Reddit. I’d say it happens about 60% of the time. I’ve had the laptop for five months, and I’ve used VLC and YouTube extensively as well, and I’ve never had any issues with them.

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If it only occurs with Reddit, I agree it might be a software problem. Only the windows flicker and the mouse cursor is present so it’s less likely to be a cable/screen problem.

Have you tried disabling hardware acceleration of your browser? It might be interfering with Reddit’s video player.

How about updating to the latest Intel graphics drivers? Check via Driver Support Assistant.

Try to replicate in Safe Mode with Networking. If it’s resolved, then likely a driver problem.

How about any video color/quality modifications at the Intel graphics panel? Try setting everything to default for now.

Huh, that’s super weird. Can you link me a video which has caused the issue for you? I’ll see if I can tinker around and reproduce the issue myself, although I’m very much inclined to think it’s a software issue with your particular setup if it happens in such a specific situation. Which OS and browser do you use? (I’m sure it’s right in the video, but I have trouble making it out with the flashing haha…)

I do believe this would fix the issue, but I use some web apps that don’t load in properly with hardware acceleration turned off, so I would prefer to keep it on.

I do have the latest drivers, and I cannot reliably replicate the issue. Sometimes videos play properly, and sometimes they have this glitch. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason for which videos do glitch and which ones don’t. Either way, how would I boot into safe mode with networking?

The only graphics setting I’ve changed is that I turned off Local Adaptive Contrast Enhancement in the Intel Graphics Command Center.

Unfortunately, the bug is very difficult to reliably reproduce. If I do find a video that causes the bug, I will link it though.

This occurs to me on both Pop!_OS and Windows 11 in the Brave browser. On my reddit post, people who were using other Chromium browsers also reported having the bug.


Coincidentally, I have also run into the issue. I can confirm and reproduce the flickering issue with Google Chrome and Chromium-based browsers. Tested with Google Chrome and Chromium Edge. The issue is absent with Firefox. In my case, hovering over a video preview on Reddit causes the behavior. Like the OP, YouTube, Twitch and other media websites are fine.

After some preliminary searching, it appears to be an issue with Chrome even way back as version 80 and is being experienced by other people. I can also confirm that disabling hardware acceleration solves this. Furthermore, I have observed that this crashes the browser and causes a memory leak.

I know disabling hardware acceleration is not a satisfying solution, but how about trying disabling hardware decoding only? This solved it for me. Open chrome://flags/#disable-accelerated-video-decode then check back on your apps if they are functioning properly.

At least this appears to be a software problem on the side of Chrome. Your Framework is fine. :slight_smile: If hardware acceleration is mission critical for you, maybe consider Firefox until this is address by Chrome/Chromium.

I didn’t have this exact problem, but I did have YouTube video dropping a lot of frames, turning things into a stuttery mess.

This was Windows 11 and Chrome. A Chrome update fixed it. I was expecting driver issues.

Thank you so much for all of this helpful information!

What version of Chrome fixed it? I’m having this problem using Brave with Chromium version 100.0.4896.127.

Does this happen docked or undocked? I have only ever had this happen on Reddit pages in Chrome and it isn’t only with videos. Once the flashing starts I can use the mouse scroll wheel and it will stop. If I click the mouse to where I think another tab is at it will stop. I thought it might be a docking station issue and I just upgraded the firmware for that so we shall see if it continues. If it does I would suspect there is something embedded in the reddit pages causing it…ads on the sidebar, etc.

Yes, I can “fix” it in the same way. I do not own a dock, so every time this happens to me, it’s undocked. After following @John_Perez’s tips for disabling hardware decoding, the problem does appear to be better, but this could also just be that I’ve been lucky enough to not have had the bug in a while (it’s happened like that before).

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This is happening with me with youtube but not his severe.

I had the same issue with Reddit. Using the mouse wheel to scroll away from the video helped too.

Then I played around with the bug for a while, and it switched to the behavior, described by @John_Perez. It only happened, while I hovered over the progress bar, when it would normally show the video preview.
See https://youtu.be/qakU6omMtME

While keeping the Reddit tab with the strange behaving video preview, I googled the problem in another tab and clicked on a random link. That other tab flickered and I closed it with <ctrl>+<w>.

Then I entered debug; in the Chrome JS console of the Reddit tab with the video preview behavior, clicked on continue and the bug was gone. I can not reproduce it since. Even after restarting Chrome and killing Chrome multiple times.

Restarting Chrome did not help to fix the bug before, while the bug was there.

Maybe it would have been sufficient to kill the Chrome task. There were 7 tasks, even after I completely closed Chrome.