Trick discovered to block all ads on YouTube
A Reddit user discovered a way to block all ads on YouTube and also the paywall on news sites and newspapers. Taking advantage of a hostname flaw, it is possible to access the full content without the domain to serve the ads being matched.
And in reality, the failure is incredibly simple. The user points out that the only thing that needs to be done, is to add a period in the URL. Thus, the website in question ceases to access server data, from a different domain, which are used to serve the ads (cross-origin resource sharing, or ‘CORS’).
- Normal URL: https://www.youtube .com / watch? V = 2O4K_tmZs1A
- Changed URL: https://www.youtube .com. / watch? v = 2O4K_tmZs1A
The only necessary change to the URL is to use “.com.” Instead of just “.com”. But in addition to cutting sites’ access to ads, the change also cuts access to cookies.
Thus, after starting to browse with the “hack” taught in Reddit, the user’s session is no longer valid – unless he opens a new tab of the site. Remember that YouTube may soon fix the flaw by normalizing the hostname in the browser.
Legal or not legal?
YouTube, which is a free platform, is monetized and generates income for creators through ads. One option to monetize and offer good features is YouTube Premium, which eliminates ads on the platform and offers a few more extras.
Premium arrived and gives the possibility to download videos to watch offline; it does not display advertisements before or during videos; it offers the YouTube Music service and more.
But in addition to YouTube, the method can also affect news sites and newspapers that use the paywall. This method restricts access to some type of content unless you are a subscriber.
There are other ways to eliminate ads on websites, such as blockers. On the other hand, the practice is not considered to be the most ethical, but it generates discussions about access to content. Especially when it comes to information.
In this case, it is not an illegal way to circumvent the ads. The flaw is in the redirection of the sites themselves and can be exploited in a simple way, until then.
It is also possible to use the same method on smartphones. Just open the browser and access pages in the desktop version, and then add the dot in the URL.
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