Channel Issues & Questions

Help & troubleshooting for channels on your Roku device, including adding/removing channels, logging in to, authenticating, or activating a channel, channel-specific playback issues, assistance contacting channel publishers to report issues, and adjusting channel-specific settings.
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Voolery
Level 8

Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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This looks like a bug but because it’s been happening for years and is more frequent now, it seems deliberate. When I wake up the Roku TV or media player after being in sleep mode for a few hours, an ‘add new channel’ modal window is on my tv screen and a random and unpopular channel starts downloading and is added to my home screen if I don’t hit the cancel button quickly enough. I never initiate these adds/downloads. Lately, it happens at least once every week. It’s a different channel every time but it’s always an obscure, unpopular channel. Does this happen to anyone else? Why would Roku add these kinds of channels to a customer’s account without the customer initiating it?

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DBDukes
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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@Voolery wrote:

Thanks for the help. I’ll add a PIN and see if that fixes it. Re: the screensaver, I’ve only used the default but downloaded/added  Aquatic Life aquarium about a year ago. I’m still confused about why channels get added like this. Feels sneaky. 


Roku has run promotions with some services in the past, but nothing in the last couple of years or so. During those times, apps did show up on devices that did not have PIN setup for adding apps/channels.

Those apps appeared in position 5. That is, 2nd item on 2nd row of apps. 

What apps are you seeing that you didn't add?

Also, keep in mind that if any user of any of the devices on the Roku account adds an app, it gets added on all devices on the account, at the end of the app listing on the menu.

Oh, and some screen savers (think City Stroll, but others also) include ads. For example, on City Stroll, you'll see, in addition to the buildings of the city, billboards advertising stuff, just like in real life. Only, these ads are actual ads. If you activate them, the app they're advertising can be loaded onto the device.

To do this, you would hit either the PLAY button, or the OK button when the ad is on-screen. To exit a screen saver, it's a good idea to hit the HOME button rather than one of those.

The Roku Logo screensaver, Roku Clock screensaver, and Aquatic Life don't do this, but some others do. Check your behavior and see if that might be part of the issue.

DBDukes
Roku Community Streaming Expert
Note: I am not a Roku employee.

If this post solves your problem please help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."

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16 REPLIES 16\
AvsGunnar
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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@Voolery 

Usually it is traced back to a screensaver that is installed on the Roku device.  Try using a default Roku screensaver or the Aquatic Life aquarium and see if it resolves itself.  Additionally, if you go to your online account dashboard and enable a PIN Preference, will stop Channels and Apps from being installed without you entering that PIN.  https://my.roku.com/  

 

Roku Community Streaming Expert
Just another Roku user... I am not a Roku employee.
Insignia RokuTV, Ultra 4660x, Premiere+ 3921, Express 4k+ 3941
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makaiguy
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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Small but significant additions:


@AvsGunnar wrote:

@Voolery 

Additionally, if you go to your online account dashboard, create a PIN and enable a PIN Preference to require its use when adding a channel, will stop Channels and Apps from being installed without you entering that PIN.  https://my.roku.com/  

 


 

Roku Community Streaming Expert
I am not a Roku employee, only a user like you.
Streaming Stick 4K+ 3821 | Streaming Stick+ 3810 | TCL Roku TV 43S245/C107X | Streaming Stick 3600

If this post solves your problem please help others find this answer by clicking "Accept as Solution.". Please only do this if it ACTUALLY solves your problem.
MilesT
Level 13

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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Less likely..if this is a second hand device, did you reset it and put in your account details?

Not a Roku employee
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Voolery
Level 8

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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They are not second-hand devices. I purchased both the Roku TV and media player new and have been the only owner. My account details have not changed since setting up the devices. 

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Voolery
Level 8

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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Thanks for the help. I’ll add a PIN and see if that fixes it. Re: the screensaver, I’ve only used the default but downloaded/added  Aquatic Life aquarium about a year ago. I’m still confused about why channels get added like this. Feels sneaky. 

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DBDukes
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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@Voolery wrote:

Thanks for the help. I’ll add a PIN and see if that fixes it. Re: the screensaver, I’ve only used the default but downloaded/added  Aquatic Life aquarium about a year ago. I’m still confused about why channels get added like this. Feels sneaky. 


Roku has run promotions with some services in the past, but nothing in the last couple of years or so. During those times, apps did show up on devices that did not have PIN setup for adding apps/channels.

Those apps appeared in position 5. That is, 2nd item on 2nd row of apps. 

What apps are you seeing that you didn't add?

Also, keep in mind that if any user of any of the devices on the Roku account adds an app, it gets added on all devices on the account, at the end of the app listing on the menu.

Oh, and some screen savers (think City Stroll, but others also) include ads. For example, on City Stroll, you'll see, in addition to the buildings of the city, billboards advertising stuff, just like in real life. Only, these ads are actual ads. If you activate them, the app they're advertising can be loaded onto the device.

To do this, you would hit either the PLAY button, or the OK button when the ad is on-screen. To exit a screen saver, it's a good idea to hit the HOME button rather than one of those.

The Roku Logo screensaver, Roku Clock screensaver, and Aquatic Life don't do this, but some others do. Check your behavior and see if that might be part of the issue.

DBDukes
Roku Community Streaming Expert
Note: I am not a Roku employee.

If this post solves your problem please help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."

jebbrown
Level 8

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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This is my response to ROKU about this issue, not you personally.  You're leaving something out.  First of all, It's my Roku TV and when I wake it up from the default screen saver not only does it occasionally add channels, but it will much more often actually leave the channel I was paused on (like in the middle of a movie) and go to another channel.  How often does it do that?  on average once a week.  It did not do this when I bought the TV a few years ago - the switching channel habit started within the last year.  This is something Roku did.  My girlfriend has the exact same TV and it does the exact same thing to her and started doing it at the same time and I don't mess with her TV So it's not because of some bizarre setting or screen saver we actively chose.

Neither of the above behaviors is acceptable.  If I had the time I'd file a formal complaint.  Keep doing it and eventually I will.

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renojim
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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@jebbrown, I hate to say it, but it's your actions that are causing this.  Switch to a screensaver that doesn't advertise other channels and/or NEVER touch the Play/Pause or OK buttons when the screensaver is active.

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jebbrown
Level 8

Re: Why do random channels start to get added without my consent when I wake up the Roku?

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I didn't pick the screen saver - it was the default provided by ROKU, and when I pause the TV to go to the bathroom or grab some food or whatever, how do I un-pause it ?  What I am doing is what I have been doing since the first Roku came out, and what I was doing on this TV for a few years with no issues.  I personally didn't change anything.

Common sense says that if I press pause to pause what I am watching, then I press pause/play to un-pause it (since there is no resume button- just the single play/pause button).  That's how it is on every electronic device I've ever owned that has a pause button, and that's how it was on my TV until relatively recently.

How do I know when the screen saver is no longer active?  When it is black?  that definitely is not always the case as the very last time I had this issue the screen was black when I pressed the play/pause button and it launched another channel.

Is the screen saver always active?  if so, how would one ever de-activate it - turn the TV off?  That makes zero sense. 

Maybe it's not even ROKU.  Maybe it's Netflix or HBO or Hulu.  Doesn't make a lot of sense but I was just testing out a different screensaver while watching Hulu and after 10 minutes went back to check on it and Hulu had put up their own screen saver, apparently determined by their own usage parameters.

Now that I have changed the screen saver I'll have to wait and see if I still have a problem.

I know you're just trying to help, so I'll give you a kudo for that, but wording it like it was my fault is like telling somebody who just got hit by a drunk driver that they should not drive in dangerous environments.