If there’s one thing that frustrates viewers and streamers alike, it’s blocking ads on Twitch. While it’s crucial that some ads run in order to keep the service going, they are ripe for abuse. There are legitimate privacy and security concerns that come with online advertisement in general, as well as speed issues.
The fact of the matter is, you should be able to support a platform while not making yourself vulnerable. Here’s how.
Why Block Ads on Twitch?
First, let’s talk about ads, what they are, and why you might want to block them.
Obviously, an advertisement is an attempt by a company to entice you to spend money on their product or service. They pay platforms like Twitch to host those ads and show them to you. Simple, right?
Well, what an ad is from a technical perspective is a whole lot of data. Your computer is constantly getting information from all sorts of places, and the more you get, the less “room” there is for a new stream. So, everything slows down in order to process the data coming through.
Ads are big amounts of data that can jam up the works and cause you to lose connection or force your computer to spend time catching up.
Other than making your connection faster and more reliable, there’s also security to consider. Most ads are safe, but cybercriminals can use ads to distribute malware. Large platforms like Twitch are good at stopping those, but some other sites? Not so much. You can avoid infection with a good ad blocker.
More than just blocking ads on Twitch, a good ad blocker can help protect your privacy. Many ad platforms will install trackers on your computer to monitor your activity. This helps them better advertise to you. Instead, you can keep them from collecting your personal data.
Why you Might Not Want to Block Ads on Twitch
Keep in mind that, as we mentioned above, ads are the way that platforms make money and many of them also use ad revenue as a metric for paying streamers. While you can always spend bits or make direct donations, this still might cut into your favorite people’s paycheck.
That’s why, in looking for an ad blocker, you want one with high levels of customization. The ability to whitelist specific channels is incredibly valuable. It allows you to support the people you want while not always being bombarded with ads.
Ways to Block Twitch Ads
There are three primary ways to block ads on Twitch.
- Buy a Turbo Twitch Account – This isn’t really a block for ads, however it’s the easiest way to stop them from flooding your connection. Turbo Twitch costs a monthly fee, but also helps run the platform and pay creators.
- Buy a Stand-Alone Ad Blocker – There are a lot of options out there for ad blockers. Free ones do exist, but they tend to not respond as quickly to workarounds. Moreover, a stand-alone blocker like AdGuard is able to stop types of ads that browser extensions might let slip through.
- Report Video-on-Demand Ads – This doesn’t block all ads so much as reduces unpleasant ones. By reporting ads you don’t like, the system will eventually stop sending that specific one to you.
The Internet is a very carefully balanced economy. Providing services free at the point of delivery means paying by other means, usually with your time. That being said, a good ad blocker can help you defend your privacy more effectively. When you block ads on Twitch, websites, or other channels, do it consciously, with an eye on the bigger picture. But don’t be afraid to make that decision for yourself.