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YouTube really hates ad blockers, starts skipping and muting videos (Update: Statement)

To fix the issue, simply disable your ad blocker or subscribe to YouTube Premium.

Published onMay 29, 2024

YouTube premium app on smartphone stock photo (1)
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
  • YouTube has begun skipping videos for users attempting to access the service with an active ad blocker. If you manage to get past the skipping videos, YouTube also mutes the video.
  • Users report success in bypassing these measures with different ad blockers, but we recommend exploring YouTube Premium as a hassle-free solution.
  • Through its statement, YouTube claims that the issue was caused due to an unrelated push to improve the service’s performance and reliability.

Update: May 29, 2024 (05:42 AM ET): We reached out to YouTube for a statement, and a YouTube spokesperson provided us with the following:

Ad blockers violate YouTube’s Terms of Service, and we’ve been urging users for some time to support their favorite creators and allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium for an ad-free experience. An unrelated push to improve YouTube’s performance and reliability may be resulting in suboptimal viewing experiences for ad blocker users.

As per the statement, YouTube isn’t intentionally trying to hamper ad block users with this new move, but these users were caught in the crossfire of a performance-related update.

Original article: May 28, 2024 (02:37 AM ET):  YouTube has been fighting ad blockers for a while now, recommending users either subscribe to YouTube Premium or switch off their ad blocker and make peace with the platform’s ever-increasing ads. The platform has adopted various tricks, like slowdowns, countdown clocks, and more, to persuade more users to jump over to fair means of monetization. The latest move from YouTube against adblockers is to start skipping videos entirely and even mute their audio.

Reddit user SDHD4K has shared YouTube’s latest tactic against ad blockers. If you have an ad blocker enabled, playing a video will jump you directly to the end of it, skipping playback entirely.

As you can see, if you have ad block enabled, YouTube doesn’t really let you play the video and enjoy the content anymore.

Other users in the Reddit thread mentioned that they also experience missing audio when they use an ad blocker on YouTube. They can adjust the volume slider to bring audio back, but it reverts to muting again as soon as you leave the slider. So, if you do manage to get around the skipping video, you will have an audio-less video experience.

Blocking ad blockers is a cat-and-mouse game, though this issue seems to be affecting Adblock Plus for the most part. Some ad blockers have already implemented workarounds for this issue. Users report that uBlock Origin works well on Firefox and Brave, while others prefer the Opera GX browser or alternate clients like FreeTube.

Are you happy with the state of YouTube in 2024?

23442 votes

Nonetheless, we strongly recommend users explore YouTube Premium as an option. I confess that the ad experience on YouTube has massively deteriorated in recent months, with multiple long, unskippable ads. Considering how much my family uses YouTube as a service, we’re assessing if it makes sense to get a YouTube Premium family subscription and enjoy YouTube Music alongside it.

We’ve reached out to YouTube for a statement. We’ll update this article if and when we hear back from them.

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