PewDiePie, the most profitable star on YouTube, has asked his fans to sign up for the site’s monthly subscription service, Red, as a way to help his fellow content producers. On Tumblr, the real-life Felix Kjellberg argues that YouTube Red is Google’s response to the rising popularity of Adblock, which does exactly what it sounds like. “Using Adblock doesn’t mean you’re clever and above the system,” he writes. “YouTube Red exists because using Adblock has actual consequences.”
In a poll of his Twitter followers, Kjellberg found that 40 percent use Adblock while watching YouTube videos. “I can also confirm with my own Google statistics that that 40% is a correct estimate,” he claims, adding that “what this means is that YouTubers lose about 40% of their ad income.”
Kjellberg’s doing just fine — he earned an estimated $12 million in the past year — and says he doesn’t care if fans go block crazy while watching his videos. “Ads are annoying, I get it… But for smaller channels, this number can be devastating.”
YouTube’s ad-free Red subscription debuted on Wednesday (Oct. 28), kicking off with a 30-day free trial that it has promised to pay content creators throughout. Red costs $9.99/month.
PewDiePie’s Tumblr post: