YouTube Accused Of Throttling CPU Performance For Users With AdBlock Installed

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Jan 17, 2024 - 10:45 AM

As if the noticeably longer ads on YouTube weren't unbearable enough, the streaming video platform is now also in the spotlight due to slowing down PCs for users that have AdBlock installed. 

That was the topic of a new article, which noted that "AdBlock users have been reporting widespread performance issues with the extension enabled on YouTube". 

A thread in the YouTube subreddit detailed that AdBlock enabling would cause slow load times and increased CPU usage when on YouTube. 

"This messes up the resources on the computer as a whole. It just kills Chrome it seems," one person wrote. 

The author tested the issue himself and found that his CPU usage rose about 17% when using AdBlock on the site. While not a catastrophic increase in processor use, the author did note that "lower-end laptops mainly used for browsing could start having heat problems". 

The issue also affects YouTube Premium subscribers using AdBlocker on other sites, frustrating users who expect an ad-free experience in line with YouTube's Terms of Service.

User JotaroKujoxXx mentioned their laptop's unusually high activity, while another user suspected storage issues. Sarah James, a Guides Writer, observed a 15-18% performance drop when using the extension with Premium.

YouTube's communications manager, Christopher Lawton, indicated that such issues will persist as the platform enhances its ad-blocker detection. Consequently, YouTube often gets blamed for any extension-related problems, though in some cases, it may not be directly responsible.

Lawton told PCGamer: "Loading delays experienced by Adblock and AdBlock Plus users are not caused by our ad blocker detection efforts." 

Raymond Hill of uBlock Origin also commented about the issue on Twitter: "I investigated a bit the performance regressions, and the cause is many distinct code paths, [which] affect many sites."

"Since it affects both Adblock Plus and AdBlock, the performance regression hits harder those who had the bad idea to use both at once," he wrote.