Those who don’t want to spend $120 on YouTube Premium due to the site’s intrusive advertisements frequently resort to ad blockers. Google, however, isn’t thrilled about the prospect of losing revenue due to ad blockers, so the company is testing out a new tool designed to persuade people to reconsider.
Earlier this week, Reddit user Sazk100 shared a screenshot of a YouTube popup that said emphatically that ad blocks were not permitted. Advertising helps keep YouTube free for its billions of users across the world, and YouTube Premium can remove adverts entirely. At the end of the message, you’ll be given two choices: either enable YouTube commercials or sign up for YouTube Premium (which costs either $11.99 per month or $119.99 per year) to watch videos without ads.
There have been reports from users who have encountered this that they have been able to close the pop-up and continue blocking advertisements on YouTube, but it is probable that Google will crack down on this or have the pop-up appear frequently enough to be distracting.
The YouTube subreddit admins stated that the ad-blocker notification was confirmed to be a test by a YouTube employee. In a statement to IGN, a Google representative provided more detail.
“We’re running a small experiment globally that urges viewers with ad blockers enabled to allow ads on YouTube or try YouTube Premium,” the company explained. The identification of ad blockers is not new, and many publishers already advise their readers to turn them off.
commercials generate revenue for most online businesses, but some users feel that YouTube is taking it too far with its growing amount of pre-roll and mid-roll commercials that cannot be skipped.
According to The Reg, YouTube’s ad revenue increased to $29.2 billion in 2022 from $28.8 billion the year before. This accounted for more than 11% of Google’s total revenue. The overall online advertising sector has fallen, and this is seen in the fourth quarter of 2022, when it generated $7.96 billion in revenue from adverts, down over 8% from the same period the previous year.
Google does frequently conduct tests on YouTube. Early this year, a test was conducted in which only Premium subscribers had access to 4K video, while another tested the addition of a higher bitrate “1080p Premium” option for subscribers.
It’s unclear whether Google plans to make this current experiment permanent, but you shouldn’t be surprised if it continues to operate as more than simply a caution.