YouTube adblocker slowdown explained: Firefox & Chrome users affected

YouTube logo in a red backgroundYouTube

YouTube is cracking down on adblockers. The company is intentionally slowing down load times for those who use ad blockers in their browsers. Here’s the lowdown on what’s going on, how it’ll affect you, and what you can do about it.

YouTube is not happy with those who use adblockers. It all started with pop-ups reminding users how ad-blockers violate YouTube’s terms of service. The company then restricted the use of most adblockers.

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‘Most’ because there are still some warriors fighting hard against YouTube’s adblocker crackdown. However, the video-sharing platform has started punishing those using adblockers with slow load times.

Users have reported that only non-Chrome browsers are being targeted with slower videos, but YouTube says that’s not the case. Read on to learn everything about the YouTube adblocker slowdown.

Which browsers will be affected by YouTube adblocker slowdown?

YouTube logo on dark backgroundUnsplash/Alexander Shatov

Earlier this week, users on X and Reddit reported a five-second delay when opening YouTube with an ad-blocker enabled on their Firefox and Edge browsers. Many speculated that YouTube is punishing only those using non-Chrome browsers.

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The company has now acknowledged that the delay is deliberate and will impact all browsers with ad blockers enabled, not only Firefox or Edge.

“To support a diverse ecosystem of creators globally and allow billions to access their favorite content on YouTube, we’ve launched an effort to urge viewers with ad blockers enabled to allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium for an ad-free experience. Users who have ad blockers installed may experience suboptimal viewing, regardless of the browser they are using,” said YouTube in a statement given to Android Authority.

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YouTube’s statement makes it clear that the situation is only going to get more challenging for adblockers from here. Although this may be upsetting for users, the crackdown makes sense for both creators and YouTube itself.

Why is YouTube slowing down videos?

YouTube earns its revenue by showing you ads. That revenue also gets shared with your favorite creators. But when you use adblockers to bypass these ads, YouTube’s earnings are negatively impacted. By slowing down videos, YouTube aims to discourage users from using Adblockers.

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The slowdown shows YouTube is set to take strict measures against anyone attempting to exploit loopholes in its adblocker ban.

What are your options?

Currently, your options are somewhat limited. You can either subscribe to YouTube Premium for $13.99 per month or switch to a different video-sharing service.

Dailymotion and Vimeo are viable alternatives, although they don’t offer quite as much content as YouTube, and their user bases are also significantly smaller.

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