Education is changing — not news to anyone. What required many years of university attendance before can be now learned at a much faster pace, using technology and interactivity, and, most importantly, without leaving the house. From watching a 3-minutes long “how-to” video to getting an actual degree, many people, especially of the younger generation, consider this a new norm and struggle to choose a learning program out of hundreds of available options.
Surely, not all the online educational offerings are equally good. Constantly competing for people’s attention, some organizations tend to invest more resources in advertising and new technologies, rather than the quality of their teaching materials. Those succeeding in expansion and popularity can be easily corrupt by promoting their sponsors, as well as whatever goals the latter pursue. And some are designed purely to serve the purpose of spreading the particular ideas under cover of education. One of them is called PragerU, and you have probably come across their excessive advertising on the Internet already.
What is PragerU (Prager University)?
Founded in 2009 by Dennis Prager and Allen Estrin, PragerU is an American video production company that is using YouTube as its main distribution platform. Covering various political, economic, scientific, and philosophical issues, the authors of this channel aim at educating the audience, in particular the young people, which is why the “U” in the company’s name stands for “University”.
The truth is, however, that PragerU is not an actual university or any sort of an academic institution. It doesn’t offer diplomas and degrees, whilst the lecturers in their videos are not certified professors on the matters discussed. Most of the PragerU hosts are moderately famous journalists, actors, activists, or any other possible types of media exposed persons. What do all these people have in common? A passion for an American conservative, right-wing ideas, as well as a strongly dedicated capitalist worldview. Or a willingness to demonstrate those in exchange for a solid reward.
PragerU publishes one video, featuring a widely-debatable topic and cartoon-like graphics, per week. Each video is accompanied by a lesson plan and a study guide so the material can be used by teachers in the classrooms or by parents in the homeschooling process. In 2015 they opened up a new channel, PragerU International, where some of the most popular videos can be viewed in 9 different languages, from Chinese to Hebrew and Russian. A handful of videos is indeed very popular, and the number of PragerU subscribers on Youtube is moving towards a 3 million mark. Advertising is playing a major role in this popularity, too.
Why are PragerU Ads so Annoying and a Lot of People Want to Remove Them?
PragerU spends around 40% of its $25 million annual budget on advertisement. Targeted ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Google, pre-roll video ads on Youtube, and an army of volunteers posting PragerU content on their social media accounts do their work well enough to attract the audience. But not the format of the ads makes millions of people annoyed by the PragerU promo. This is more about the frequency and density with which the commercials are being shown to the ordinary web users not particularly searching for such information. And, even more likely, the narrative in the videos itself.
For many people of the liberal or centrist views, the problem with the videos from PragerU is, well, everything that they are talking about. The Youtube channel promotes ideas, often opposite to the values of a democratic society. Being funded by far right-wing fracking billionaires Wilks, PragerU advocates for fossil fuel usage and a corporate-capitalistic economy. It relays the message of American exceptionalism, islamophobia, and climate change denial in accordance with the core principles of their other sponsor, Bradley Foundation.
In their videos, PragerU hosts state that “racism, bigotry, xenophobia, homophobia, and Islamophobia” are “meaningless buzzwords”, “pure democracies do not work”, “gender pay gap does not exist”, “the alt-Right has nothing in common with conservatism, and is in fact much closer to leftism” or that “white privilege must not be real”. Various critics accuse PragerU of distorting the history, faking the evidence, as well as prejudice and speculations. Since 2016 Youtube restricts access to PragerU videos for underaged viewers, as well as adds a fact-check to their most controversial materials. Yet, the conservative media network is still able to buy advertising space on Youtube and push their materials through the pre-roll video commercials, and this totally drives users nuts.
How to Block PragerU Ads on Youtube?
Right before you get to the info below, we’d like to suggest you to read our article on how to watch YouTube without ads using your Android device. In this article you’ll find a bunch of handy tips and even more. Go ahead 🙂
Due to the perfect use of the Youtube algorithm and the massive marketing investment the company is using, it is not so easy to stop PragerU ads. Even those who never searched or viewed a single video with the right-wing rhetorics, or the one promoting “alternative” scientific approaches, cannot be completely safe from having to see the PragerU promo. In fact, many users are wondering what they did wrong to receive such a heavy “punishment”:
Some fellow users out there went really creative trying to find a solution:
While others had to give up any hope:
Jokes aside, Youtube does have a feature that allows you to demonstrate your preference of not getting any PragerU ads within your viewing experience:
Settings on Youtube (Youtube Report Feature)
According to the user reports, only this action can help to block PragerU ads on Youtube:
- Go to PragerU Youtube page by typing it in the search bar or clicking their name;
- Navigate to the last tab called “About”;
- Find the little Flag icon on the right-hand side and click it;
- In the drop-down menu select the last option — “Report user”;
- Now select an option that you think is correct, for example, “Hate speech against a protected group”;
- Click “Next” and here you might select a particular video that you find offensive;
- Click “Next” and optionally describe why you find this video or channel offensive;
- Click “Submit”. Within 24 hours Google employees will review your report.
Even if this is not a guarantee that PragerU videos will be removed from Youtube (disclaimer: they won’t), this would adjust the algorithm in a way that you will see less of similar content and related ads.
Or just follow the advice from this wise man:
How to Block PragerU Ads with AdLock
With AdLock you can get rid of all the ads at once, including those from PragerU. This intelligent ad blocker is designed to prevent loading advertising scripts, leaving you just with the content you are interested in. AdLock allows you to watch videos without pre-roll commercials, read articles without the annoying banners, or shop online without seeing any “promoted” products. AdLock comes with a pre-installed list of filters that will do their work automatically so you don’t have to adjust it yourself. On top of that, you will enjoy some other benefits, such as protection of your data online from malware and spyware, faster loading of pages and videos, and longer battery life!
For a comfortable ad-free experience on your mobile check out the discount subscriptions on the AdLock multi-device license.