Paid “Ad-Free” YouTube Premium Is Now Showing Ads

UPDATE (March 16, 2019): The ads discussed below as appearing on the Roku YouTube app (even when subscribed to YouTube Premium) have now vanished for me — at least for the moment. I have no word as to whether this is a temporary or more long-term change, whether this was a test that has now terminated, or any other additional information. But I’m definitely glad to see those annoying boxes gone, especially the one that was overlaid on the playing videos themselves.

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I pay for YouTube Premium because — among other things — I don’t want to see ads on videos.

But at least through the popular YouTube Roku app, YouTube is now continuously displaying BUY SEASON ads for some video program clips (complete with purchase price) in a blue box on the video control YouTube Roku app “watch pages” — and even worse, for a period of time (around 10 seconds) as a corner ad box overlay on the running videos themselves. The blue box ad is also present whenever you return to the watch page (e.g., by pausing the video), and the overlay ad appears for the same interval every time you begin running the video again. The overlay ad in particular is extremely annoying.

These ads are also present as a box on the regular web-based YouTube watch pages for these clips — where they are less obtrusive but still are ads on an ostensibly ad-free service.

YouTube Premium is promoted as a paid, ad-free service. The presence of these ads on Premium accounts (especially when overlaid on top of running videos — whether limited to Roku devices or ultimately deployed through other display devices as well) is not acceptable.


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6 thoughts on “Paid “Ad-Free” YouTube Premium Is Now Showing Ads”

  1. Why is YouTube putting so many commercials, it’s discouraging and it’s Overkill destroying my interest in YouTube anyting. I can’t even sing a dog on karaoke song without the next song being a commercial. It’s way out of hand and overly aggressive. I hate it and it needs to stop or drastically slowed down. I haven’t bought anything and hope I don’t from those commercials not even look at them. The aggression throws me off.

    1. I subscribe to YouTube Premium (formerly called YouTube Red) — it’s a great value, especially since it includes Music as well — and I never see a YouTube commercial or YouTube ad. It also helps to support worthy YouTube creators.

  2. I not only paid for YouTube premium I paid for the upgrade to YouTube TV as well as play music and yes they’re ad free but that doesn’t mean the content suppliers and providers aren’t ad-free and that’s the biggest scam of all because in the past when I went with Comcast I still had content ads now I’m not getting double ads thank you for letting me pay for that.

    1. You can’t reasonably complain to Google about ads that are not under Google’s control. Such complaints should go to the third parties running their own ads.

  3. I pay for YouTube premium and so see a lot of commercials when using YouTube app on Samsung TV. Not sure if this is the case on a pc, I only watch it on smart tvs..

    1. If you have YT Premium, you should not be seeing any video overlay ads, preview ads, or “during video” ads generated by YouTube. I certainly don’t see those on Roku or Android TV — or on a PC.

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