I want to hear your thoughts

No, adblockers are not piracy. It’s more similar to using a “free service/resource” that has a recommended (or even expected) donation, which you decide not to pay.

If you’re somehow using adblockers to get past a paywall or some other authentication/authorization system, then we have a legitimate piracy conversation.


Absolutely fucking not. Let me pay safely (privately) and we both win.

This is an asymmetrical arms race against an evil industry.

Ad blockers are a self-defence technology by their nature.

Sagar Acharya

Exactly, isn’t this totally obvious!

Ads have no right be as invasive as they are. So ads, and only ads, are to blame.

Nope. Web tech is designed from the ground up to give the end user full control over how they render the documents they are sent. That’s why the pages are sent without DRM to your browser using a well-documented standard and every browser has extensive infra to let you write code that modifies browser behavior and allows you to automatically edit the pages you’re sent.

Content creators are free to bundle ads with their content, and content consumers are just as free to strip the ads out and refuse to view them. This is literally how the Web was designed to work.

You want something else, go help Google kill the Web and replace it with DRM-infested walled gardens and let Google tell you how and when you can communicate with other users as the inevitable price.

Under most circumstances you can’t even call adblocking a DMCA DRM circumvention violation because for most web documents there isn’t even any copy protection embedded in the page??? (Might be different for YouTube admittedly since there absolutely is DRM embedded)

It’s literally as if as someone was selling their novel as an unprotected Word document, included a bunch of paid product placement in their novel, and then got mad and called it piracy when readers opened the Word document and stripped it out AFTER the users had downloaded it.

Of course this is different with YouTube and streaming video platforms in general since they generally have TOS that cover adblocking and they do bundle DRM. However, it’s up to the video platforms to actually do the legwork of implementing DRM and enforcing the TOS, and putting up with irate users who inevitably get screwed out of money for one reason or another or just have the user experience degraded in the name of intellectual property.


no, refuse to elaborate

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Someone said

Ad blockers are a self defense technology by nature

Add ads in small quantities to your website that respect me and my privacy and I might just whitelist you, but at this point the internet is unusable without AdBlock

No and this was posted already - https://lemmy.ml/post/173948

Ad blockers are for personal safety. How can something expressly for personal safety be considered piracy?


I don’t.

The argument for adblockers being a form of piracy is that there is an implicit contract. The content creator gives us the permission to watch the content with the implied requirement that we watch the ad that comes with it. So, we are paying for the content with our time and attention when watching the ad. By using an adblocker, we refuse to pay this price, violating the terms of the implied contract, thereby forgoing the permission to watch it. In this argument, the definition of piracy used is that of using (by watching) a work protected by copyright without permission.

I don’t agree that there is an implied contract for watching an ad any more than there is an implied contract for watching the full video. Not watching a full video impacts the statistics of the creator in a negative way, so there is an implied contract that if you begin watching the video you will watch it all. By this logic, it is also a form of piracy to stop watching. There are many things that the creator or YouTube might like you to do, but that does not spawn an implied contract. If they want a contract, they will have to add it to YouTube’s ToS. Then it might be piracy by some of the looser definitions.

I don’t agree that there is an implied contract for watching an ad

Agreed. There was never a requirement for looking at the ads in a newspaper. It’s just that they couldn’t check whether you were watching it or just ignoring it. Now they can, but IMHO that doesn’t change the situation much.

If sites don’t want people to use adblockers, they should charge for access or try to block people using adblockers. I’m personally fine with that last one. Ill just go somewhere else. Just like I’m not required to watch their ads, they’re not required to feed me content if I refuse to watch their ads.

The argument for adblockers being a form of piracy is that there is an implicit contract.

First, let me say that I don’t disagree with your use of the term “implicit contract”. They definitely seem to think in such terms.

But the concept itself is invalid… the whole point of a contract is that it is explicit. That you’re putting down in writing some sort of formal agreement so that neither party makes assumptions about what the agreement is.

The rise of “implicit contracts”, and at a more general level, the use of the word “contract” to refer to one-sided agreements by subscription services, is dangerous.


This comment sums up my feelings really well. In general, ad blocking in no way constitutes piracy because most piracy laws focus on the redistribution of pirated content and not the consumption. It’s why piracy cases are so difficult to persecute.


Perhaps at worst it’s like sneaking walking in to a movie theatre without paying — one without attendants checking your tickets.

I’ve never heard the above situation referred to as piracy.


For me, adblocker are more kind of self defense. One wouldn’t need them, when most website operators wouldn’t add more ad than content to their pages.

…is this about Linus’ stupid tweet? Because no, using adblocker is not piracy. How would it be? All adblockers do is, wouldn’t you know it, block ads. They don’t illegally copy data.


Seems to be. Dude is a cancer on the Linux community.


He literally lied about pacman and then got mad that his system didn’t tell him he was using the wrong package manager. His first video was pretty alright, but every video after that it seems like he just has an unneeded hate boner for Linux and completely dismisses Luke who is having a great time with Linux.

Adblockers are like piracy because they are cool and good.

Btw, linus didn’t say they were piracy, he said they were akin to piracy. I think they’re close enough.


And like piracy the problem is not the pirates but the lack of good offers from the supply side (see old quote from Gabe Newell on that topic regarding games on Steam).

I think adblockers are piracy because they are substantially republishing modified productions without licences. Adblocker users use filters which adblockers provide to modify productions: removing ads from the productions. The users are innocent. But I think providing the filters is piracy. How about in communist countries? In the countries, the users must be guilty, amen.

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