YouTube has gotten a lot more aggressive in their stance against ad blockers, and it seems that the company’s decision might have only granted them a temporary victory because according to reports, it looks like users have managed to find ad blockers that actually work and are installing them in record numbers.
According to a recent report from Wired, popular ad blockers saw a sharp increase in uninstalls following YouTube’s crack down. One of those ad blockers, Ghostery, saw 3-5 times the amount of uninstalls over the last month, with over 90% of users saying they uninstalled the extension due to it not working with YouTube anymore.
AdGuard also saw a similar increase in uninstalls. The developer said that typically they get about 6,000 uninstallations per day on Chrome, but that spiked to 11,000 per day in early October and even hit a peak of 52,000 on the 18th of October. But interestingly enough, the paid version seems to offer a workaround to YouTube’s ban on ad blockers and once users realized this, installations hit 60,000 on the 18th of October and the 27th of October.
Ironically enough, it seems that users would rather pay for a premium ad blocker than pay for YouTube Premium which does away with ads and offers other features. We imagine that this will be a cat and mouse situation moving forwards.
YouTube will eventually figure out how to block these blockers, and these blockers will find a way around that. But there could be a downside to this. According to industry expert Modras, the creation of more complex blocking tactics could result in the creation of unintentional security holes, so it remains to be seen how this will play out in the long run.