YouTube is testing a new experiment that restricts users from using ad blockers while watching videos on the platform.
YouTube’s Latest Test Cracks Down On Ad-Blockers
According to a Reddit post by a Redditor Reddit_n_Me, the world’s largest video-sharing service is displaying a pop-up notification to some users who are trying to watch YouTube videos with an ad blocker enabled.
While ad blocker detection is not new, and other publishers regularly request viewers to turn off ad blockers, the company maintains that using ad blockers violates YouTube’s Terms of Service.
The pop-up notification warns users that they will be blocked from YouTube viewing after watching three videos unless they disable their ad blocker to allow ads or subscribe to YouTube Premium.
“Video player will be blocked after 3 videos. It looks like you may be using an ad blocker. Video playback will be blocked unless YouTube is allowlisted or the ad blocker is disabled,” the pop-up notification reads.
“Ads allow YouTube to stay free for billions of users worldwide. You can go ad-free with YouTube Premium, and creators can still get paid from your subscription.”
YouTube has confirmed to Android Authority that it is internally testing out a new three-strikes rule globally to deter users from using ad blockers on the video app.
“We are running a small experiment globally that urges viewers with ad blockers enabled to allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium,” said a YouTube spokesperson in a statement to Android Authority.
The Google-owned platform also said that video playback might be temporarily disabled in “extreme cases” where viewers keep using ad blockers to watch videos.
“We take disabling playback very seriously, and will only disable playback if viewers ignore repeated requests to allow ads on YouTube. To prevent disruption as part of this experiment, viewers using ad blockers may disable their ad blocker, allow YouTube ads or subscribe to YouTube Premium,” the company explained.
It added, “In cases when viewers feel they have been falsely flagged as using an ad blocker, they can share this feedback by clicking on the link in the prompt.”
Currently, the new experiment only affects a small number of users. However, YouTube has yet to reveal how many people and what regions are part of the test.