YouTube Cracks Down on Third-Party Ad Blockers by Automatically Skipping Videos to the End: Report


YouTube has initiated another crackdown on third-party ad blockers on its platform in an effort to tackle the prolonged problem, according to a report. Users with ad blockers enabled are reportedly facing a new issue – video automatically skipping to the end. This measure builds upon the global crackdown that the video-streaming platform launched last year on third-party apps and browser plugins which block ads in videos and violate its API services’ terms of service.

YouTube videos skipping to the end

In the YouTube subreddit, user SDHD4K posted a short video clip captioned, “New Youtube adblock weird behaviour – video automatically skips to the end”. In the clip, it can be seen that using an ad blocker forces the video to automatically skip to the end, prohibiting the user from watching it.

The user also allegedly tried to skip certain sections of the video, but it appears to fast-forward to the end automatically. In the same subreddit, several users have also highlighted another issue – the lack of audio.

One user commented, “And if you get around that skip, the video plays without any audio. You can only hear something when you turn the volume up or down but as soon as you ‘let go’ of the volume control the audio turns silent.”

Crackdown on Ad blockers

Google’s video-streaming platform has been heavily cracking down on ad blockers in the last few months. In May 2023, YouTube launched 30-second “unskippable ads” for its TV app, followed by a “small experiment globally that urges viewers with ad blockers enabled to allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium” in June.

A few months later, it turned into a “global effort” that takes on ad blockers violating its terms of service. In a conversation with The Verge, Christopher Lawton, Communications Manager at YouTube said that this enforcement is because “ads support a diverse ecosystem of creators globally and allow billions to access their favourite content on YouTube.”

While the platform takes a cut from features like Super Chat and channel memberships, its main revenue source remains advertisements– which third-party ad blockers get rid of.

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