What you should know about using ad blockers on YouTube

Ever heard of YouTube ad blockers, and wondered if you should use them? Here are all the details, including why your YouTube ad blocker isn’t working.

Surfing YouTube

YouTube advertising is big business, but what’s the deal with ad blockers, and should you ever use them on YouTube? Let’s take a look. 

We'll cover:

What is an ad blocker?

An ad blocker does what it says on the can. It’s a piece of software or a browser extension that blocks advertisements from appearing on certain webpages or apps.

Ad blockers check the domain names of elements within a loading page. Then, if any of those elements are identified as advertising material, they’ll be blocked from appearing on the user’s screen.

Can you block YouTube ads?

Ad blockers have traditionally been used to bypass YouTube ads, both in-browser and in-app. Leaps in technology have made it easier for users to block ads on iPhone and Android, too. Some Android users even worked out how to create an automated MacroDroid YouTube ad blocker.

However, YouTube has toughened its stance on ad blockers. During the first half of 2023, YouTubers started noticing stricter messaging from the video-sharing platform, along with explicitly harsh consequences. If you get caught using ad blockers more than twice, YouTube may disable playback on your account, so you can’t watch anything. It’s not worth it!

Watching YouTube ads

Can YouTube detect ad blockers?

Yep, YouTube can detect ad blockers. As we mentioned, YouTube started openly warning accounts using ad blockers that they’ll have three strikes, then they’re out. If you get caught, YouTube suggests disabling the ad blocker or subscribing to YouTube Premium’s ad-free, paid-for service.

Can YouTube detect AdBlock?

AdBlock is a popular ad blocker, and YouTube’s on their case. As of May 2023, YouTube has been able to identify when AdBlock users are cruising through videos and stop them in their tracks. This breakthrough has mostly affected AdBlock users on mobile and Mac devices.

Should you use YouTube ad blockers?

At the end of the day, advertising exists on YouTube to help content creators receive a consistent, decent income stream in line with how many views they get. If you use an ad blocker on YouTube, those ads will never play, the advertiser won’t be paid by YouTube, and the content creator won’t get a cut of that money either.

Think of it this way: if someone told you they were watching your YouTube content with an ad blocker, you wouldn’t be pleased. That’s hours, days, even months of your life that they’re essentially demonetizing. It might sound dramatic, but that’s the reality of using a YouTube ad blocker.

Browsing YouTube on mobile

If you’re a content creator or brand and want to keep those dollars flowing, ad blockers aren’t the only thing you should hope to avoid. If you use a track without the correct license, it could affect your right to monetize YouTube videos. But don’t sweat it. We've got you covered.

Our catalog is high-quality, affordable, and safe. An Epidemic Sound subscription goes beyond royalty-free music, removing the headache of licensing and freeing you up to do what you do best. You can enjoy the safety of our license hand-in-hand with our massive catalog of 40,000 tracks, covering just about every genre you can think of. You’ll also gain unlimited access to our advanced search functions — finding the right sound’s never been easier. 

It’s better than royalty-free. It’s worry-free. Get started with Epidemic Sound below.

Looking to take your YouTube channel to the next level? Browse our catalog of sound effects for YouTube videos and our massive collection of YouTube music.

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