YouTube Ads Are Not Smart

YouTube Ads Are Not Smart

Like many people, I watch a fair bit of YouTube. A surprisingly large amount I watch via an app on my TV, but I also watch all kinds of how-to tutorials on my PC.

And with YouTube videos come ads. I’m a YouTube Music subscriber (previously Google Play Music) so it’d only be another £2 a month to get the ad-free offer. But for now, I’m putting up with them.

Now a couple of things you should know about me – indeed, if you follow me on this site or on social media, you’ll know these things already.

  • I like cycling
  • I make videos

When I watch a cycling video on YouTube, there’s a fair to middling chance it’ll be preceded by a Zwift advert.

And when I watch a how-to video on doing something in Premiere Pro or After Effects, I’ll get an Adobe advert.

The actual ad creative changes from time to time. Sometimes I get an Adobe Creative Cloud ad; other times it’ll be about Premiere Rush, Adobe’s mobile video editing app. And Zwift has a roster of cycling stars on their books to rotate between.

But often, I’ll get one of those ads on some other random YouTube video I’m watching.

But here’s the thing.

I’m a paid Zwift subscriber already.

I’m also a fully paid Adobe Creative Cloud subscriber.

I can’t stop seeing ads for things that I’m already paying for!

YouTube doesn’t know I’m not a subscriber, and there’s no real way to tell it. All you can do is mark an ad as somehow unsuitable.

Now you might think that logically, if I’m watching dozens of Adobe Creative Cloud themed videos, either I’m very on the fence about biting the bullet and paying for it, or I’m a paid subscriber who’s using the products and is looking for tutorials on doing clever things with the software. The latter is far more likely!

In the meantime, I’m just going to carry on seeing algorithmically accurate, yet utterly pointless digital ads.