tech

There is an easy way to watch YouTube without ads, a Redditor discovered it

The Redditor claims that YouTube ads can be removed by adding an extra period in the URL. 

The only way to avoid ads on YouTube so far as been to pay for YouTube Premium subscriptions.
The only way to avoid ads on YouTube so far as been to pay for YouTube Premium subscriptions. (REUTERS)

YouTube ads can be annoying and if you want to skip it, subscribing to YouTube Premium might be the best option. However, if you are not willing to pay, there is a way around it. This hack only works on browsers though, not on the app itself.

Discovered by a Redditor, the hack involves making a tiny change to the URL of the video you are watching and it all depends on a single dot.

According to a Redditor who goes by the handle unicorn4sale, you can bypass YouTube ads on your web browser by adding an extra dot after the domain. So, instead of typing in - youtube.com/xyz (xyz being the name of the video), you need to type in - youtube.com./xyz (add that extra period just after the domain name) to get ad-free videos.

“It's a commonly forgotten edge case, websites forget to normalize the hostname, the content is still served, but there's no hostname match on the browser so no cookies and broken CORS - and lots of bigger sites use a different domain to serve ads/media with a whitelist that doesn't contain the extra dot,” the Redditor explained.

This basically means that sites use a different domain to show ads that do not have that extra dot.

While this hack, as it stands right now, works for web browsers only, the Redditor has added an update. “I had initially assumed that it didn't work on mobile because the browsers normalized the URL, however this isn't the case. The redirection happens on the server side. So, if you want this to work on mobile browsers, use the "Request Desktop Site" feature,” the Redditor added. We tried it out and it works.

The best part though is the fact that he pointed out that this hack also works for websites with paywalls.

Ethically it is wrong to be skipping ads and bypassing paywalls because someone is losing money in all this and in this case it is the content creator. And the odds are that YouTube will be fixing this loophole soon and then someone else will have to find a new way to bypass ads on YouTube that does not involve paying.