YouTube viewers outraged after site ‘tests’ banning ad blockers Nik

YouTube viewers are raising alarm bells after being greeted with a message saying the site is now banning ad blockers.

YouTube is one of the most popular video-sharing platforms on the internet, boasting an active user base of over 2.5 billion monthly users as of February 2023.

A large number of content creators have made careers for themselves by uploading videos to the site, ringing in a new era of entertainment far ahead of the curve of other influencers on sites like Instagram and TikTok.

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Over the course of the site’s existence, advertisements have played a major part in revenue for both the platform itself and its massive catalog of creators. However, many users have complained about the length and frequency of the ads they’ve been seeing — some of which last 30 seconds and are completely unskippable.

YouTube reportedly “experimenting” with banning ad blockers

Many viewers have found a way to get around ads on YouTube by using ad blockers. Unfortunately, it looks like this method might be going in the bin soon, according to some users who’ve encountered a new feature that the platform is purportedly testing. 

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In early May, users posted a message they’d allegedly received while attempting to use YouTube with an ad blocker. The message reads: “Ad blockers are not allowed on YouTube.”

“It looks like you may be using an ad blocker,” the message continues. “Ads allow YouTube to stay free for billions of users worldwide.”

The message then prompts users to switch to YouTube Premium, a service it officially launched in 2015 that allows users to bypass ads and even watch with their phones locked in exchange for a monthly fee.

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Users aren’t happy with this purported change and took to social media to warn others about the possibility of being unable to watch YouTube with an ad blocker.

“One ad before each video was fine, but they got greedy and started playing multiple unskippable 30-second ads,” one user said on Reddit. “That’s when I went for adblock. There is zero chance I am ever deactivating it or paying for premium now, that ship has sailed.”

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“If there’s SO MANY ads that your users are going out of their way to download and use ad blockers, maybe [it’s] YOU’RE the problem, not the people using them,” another said on Twitter.

According to a moderator on the YouTube subreddit, a YouTube employee allegedly confirmed that this is an “experiment” the website is currently running, and has not been rolled out to all users at the time of writing.

YouTube confirms it’s running a “small experiment” banning ad blockers

In response to a request for comment from Dexerto, a YouTube spokesperson confirmed that this is part of a global experiment urging users with ad blockers either allow ads on the platform via their device, or purchase YouTube Premium.

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“We’re running a small experiment globally that urges viewers with ad blockers enabled to allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium,” the spokesperson said in a statement to Dexerto. “Ad blocker detection is not new, and other publishers regularly ask viewers to disable ad blockers.”

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