Some time early Tuesday morning (6/18), Rihanna passed Justin Bieber as the most viewed artist on YouTube. The 77 videos on Rihanna’s official VEVO channel now have a combined 3.784 billion views in total, surpassing the total view counts of the 79 videos on Bieber’s official VEVO channel by roughly two million views.
Rihanna surpassing Bieber’s popularity on YouTube is largely due to the size of her subscriber-base. Rihanna has 8.73 million subscribers on the platform, 3.7 million more than Bieber’s 4.9 million. This means that while the average Bieber fan is much more engaged than Rihanna’s, Rihanna has much broader reach as an artist and is therefore able to secure more view counts to her name over time.
This discrepancy in fan-base stays true on the Facebook platform, where Justin Bieber’s 54.3 million “likes” on the platform dwarfs Rihanna’s 72.3 million. However, it’s not the case on Twitter, where Bieber overtook Lady Gaga back in January as the most followed person on the platform and has just recently became the first person to surpass 40 million followers.
Other artist-specific channels that populate the YouTube viewcount leaderboard are Psy at No. 3, with 3.1 billion views to his name, followed by Eminem (2.4 billion views), Lady Gaga (2.25 billion views), and Shakira (2 billion).