Samsung S8 with Spotify and other apps on screen

Spotify updated its terms of services to prohibit ad blockers, bots, and fraudulent streams. If you use an ad blocker on the streaming service, you should stop, or you may be banned from the service.

Spotify sent out an email to its users notifying changes to its Terms of Service. Helpfully, it included some plain English summaries in the email. While the usual boilerplate points were present, promising easier to understand language and updated information about third-party subscriptions, applications, and devices, one section of the summary stood out:

We’ve updated our User Guidelines, making it clear that all types of ad blockers, bots, and fraudulent streaming activities are not permitted

Spotify is like any other company, with the need to make a profit. But profitability has been extremely difficult, so much so that it just posted the first profitable quarter in the streaming service’s twelve-year history. That’s an enormous amount of time to lose money quarter after quarter.

So these changes are designed to accomplish two things. Ensure that Spotify receives all the money it should (no ad blockers), and prevent Spotify from paying out money that it shouldn’t (no fake streams). Unfortunately for Spotify, in addition to ad blockers for browsers, there are apps for Windows and Android designed to block the streaming service’s ads. If you’re using any of these options, you should probably stop immediately, lest your account gets terminated.

Spotify makes clear in its wording that you accept the new Terms of Service by continuing to stream, and the only way to opt out is to close your account. If you keep using ad blockers, Spotify says it will ban your account. The best way to avoid ads on Spotify is to pay for the premium service. If you don’t want to pay for premium, then you’ll need to stop using ad blockers and accept the ads.