YouTube is using a new method called server-side ad injection to increase its efforts against ad blockers. This method changes the way ads are presented to users by making it much more difficult for ad blockers to prevent ads from showing.

What is server-side ad injection?

Server-side ad injection is a way of delivering ads directly from YouTube’s servers before the content reaches the user’s device.

With server-side ad injection, advertisements are embedded into the video stream itself, as opposed to the existing method where they are uploaded to the user’s device and can be blocked by ad-blocking software. This new method will make identifying and removing ads challenging for ad blockers.

“Server-side ad injection is something YouTube is testing right now,” said the developer of SponsorBlock, a tool that helps skip sponsored segments in videos. “This could change how we deal with ads completely.”

Potential problems and concerns

This new method might cause a number of problems. People are raising concerns on Reddit about server-side ad injection-breaking features such as chapter markers and timestamped video links, which make it more difficult for users to navigate YouTube videos.

How this may impact Premium subscribers is an additional concern. YouTube Premium users pay to view videos ad-free, and YouTube would need to figure out a means to make sure these users continue to have an ad-free experience even with server-side ad injection. This could increase the system’s complexity and increase the chance of errors.

“YouTube needs to make sure Premium users aren’t seeing any ads,” said a user on a YouTube forum. “If they don’t get this right, it could really upset paying customers.”

When will YouTube implement it?

YouTube is collecting user feedback while the server-side ad injection capability is still being tested. Depending on the outcomes, this method may wind up being the norm. Nevertheless, YouTube hasn’t yet offered comprehensive details on the underlying technical changes.