September 26, 2020

You can block YouTube ads by adding one symbol to the URL. ‘With great power…’

Remember that ads bankroll the creators you love, so use this trick wisely.

Lenovo Smart Tab P10 Docked YouTube

Credit: Justin Duino / Android Authority

  • A redditor posted a neat trick that allows you to easily block YouTube ads.
  • All you need to do is add a period after the “.comâ€� of a video URL.
  • However, this new power should be used responsibly.

Earlier this week, a redditor within the /r/webdev sub posted an incredibly simple trick that allows you to effectively block YouTube ads from showing up during your binges (h/t Android Police). The trick doesn’t require any software, extensions, or even memorizing some sort of long string of code.

Instead, the trick involves adding just one extra character to the video address, specifically a period (.) after the “.com� in the URL. In other words, instead of visiting “youtube.com/watch?v=uK3jnIATgI4� you would go to “youtube.com./watch?v=uK3jnIATgI4“.

How does this block YouTube ads?

This quick change to the URL “breaks� the page in certain ways, which has a side effect of removing most (or even all) advertisements. That even includes the video ads that interrupt your viewing. The trick works on the desktop as well as mobile (although for mobile you need to pull the desktop version of the page).

Essentially, the period causes there to be no hostname match. This results in the content of the page still loading but various other connected aspects to that page — such as ads — failing to load. It doesn’t just block YouTube ads, but also things like cookies, and can even be used to break through paywalls of news sites.

Now, before you rush off to start watching hundreds of YouTube videos without ads, keep in mind that ads are what keep the lights on for a lot of the creators you love. If you are not viewing ads they are not getting paid. So if there’s a creator who makes stuff you really enjoy, consider “suffering� through a few ads to help ensure they get to continue making new content.

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