how can I get less annoying ads fed to me on youtube?
December 8, 2020 1:41 PM   Subscribe

I don't mind having to watch the occasional ad, but I want better ads than the ones they serve up.

There's one ad in particular I'm extremely sick of, for some sort of editing software called "grammarly". YT makes me watch it ALL THE TIME. I hate it so much.

I wouldn't mind ads for these categories:

Brightly colored clothes
Travel services
Upscale hair products
Interesting foods (I don't even care if it's gross. Bring on the "Tasty" videos where they stuff a block of cheddar cheese into a raw turkey, IDGAF. I'd still rather look at that than have some snide voiceover tell me it's going to correct my writing.)
Products and services related to home renovations

How do I game (or not game?) the YT system to show me more entertaining or relevant ads? I have been watching videos about woodworking recently but that hasn't gotten me any woodworking related ads, which I'd welcome. I watched some Rihanna music videos, ditto.
posted by fingersandtoes to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Are you opposed to using an adblocker? Several knock out YouTube ads altogether, or almost so.
posted by furnace.heart at 2:48 PM on December 8, 2020 [6 favorites]

If you use a VPN you can choose your apparent IP address country. My IP address is in Norway. All ads are in Norwegian and I don't speak Norwegian so the ads are much less grating. If you have an interest in learning a different language, ad time can turn into language lesson time! I don't know if this would work if you sign in to YouTube though.

Another thing, I have noticed that I do get served ads related to my browsing when watched through the TV Roku connection. Not signed in there either. Good luck!
posted by a humble nudibranch at 2:55 PM on December 8, 2020 [2 favorites]

wouldn't using a Norwegian IP address make trouble, like when I go to log into American shopping sites, streaming sites etc? Like aren't some of the distribution licenses different?

(asking because I would over the moon to have ads served only in Norwegian. Been watching Norsemen; becoming big Norwegian fan; don't want to get too excited about this if it's not practical for how I internet.)
posted by fingersandtoes at 3:32 PM on December 8, 2020

This bugs me too. Through youtube, you can reach "my data". That menu takes me to "Ad Personalisation" which gives the option to customize your ad experience and turn off specific advertisers (in your case Grammerly, in my case Noom.) . I keep ad personalisation off, because I don't want Google to have more data, but maybe try it. Good luck!
posted by Valancy Rachel at 3:52 PM on December 8, 2020 [3 favorites]

You can use VPN just for YouTube and not other sites, manually or automatically.

Do you get surveys from YouTube? Like asking about do you like this brand or how old you are. I keep my ads varied by answering the questions with random and contradictory info, but definitely answering them. Also sometimes I think I get survey instead of ads bc they know I'll 'help' them/their advertisers. Also (and this works for any platform I've ever used) click on any ad you don't understand or find even slightly odd or amusing. Actually my YT ads now happen to mostly be Spanish language ads for google products/services, which is nice.
posted by SaltySalticid at 4:12 PM on December 8, 2020

oh my god, I've clicked on fifty "help" links, they go round and round referring to each other but I can't find an interface for turning off specific advertisers. I wind up here but there's no further link for that topic.
posted by fingersandtoes at 4:22 PM on December 8, 2020

If you need a music streaming service and aren't wed to one already, signing up for YouTube Music will also get rid of all the YouTube ads.
posted by Candleman at 6:25 PM on December 8, 2020

I pay for YouTube premium which gets rid of ads. I get a lot of value out of YouTube and it’s worth it to me to pay for it.
posted by primethyme at 7:00 PM on December 8, 2020 [3 favorites]

You are right that having a foreign IP address may interfere with shopping in your country (wrong currency may be shown or site tells you they won't ship to that country). The VPN I use has a large number of countries and it's easy to change which country I want to appear to be in. It's a matter of a couple clicks to connect to a new country or disconnect and have your real IP location show. I change my location to the US to do online orders or view content that is blocked by area. Conversely, you can view content that is blocked in your own country by signing on in the country of origin.
posted by a humble nudibranch at 8:07 PM on December 8, 2020

nudibranch, what service is that? thanks!
posted by fingersandtoes at 9:19 AM on December 9, 2020

1) install ublock origin on desktop browsers - no more youtube ads.
2) if Android mobile, install firefox
2a) install ublock origin on Firefox mobile
2b) replace youtube app link with firefox link

I don't know if you can install firefox on ios or if there are comparable youtube ad blockers
posted by benzenedream at 8:27 AM on December 18, 2020

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