YouTube reveals its hottest creators and brands, not including PewDiePie
YouTube released its top videos, creators and brands of 2020 on Tuesday, revealing a list of up-and-coming talent, but one high-profile personality, PewDiePie, a.k.a. Felix Kjellberg, was missing.
Even though he has one of the highest follower counts of all time with 108 million subscribers, PewDiePie was not popular enough, it seems. YouTube highlighted faster-growing channels and emerging stars including MrBeast, otherwise known as Jimmy Donaldson, and Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, the teenage TikTok sisters who joined the Google-owned video service this year.
YouTube released top 10 lists for trending videos, creators, breakout creators, music videos and ads. For the top creators category, YouTube looked at the accounts with the most new U.S. subscribers, and breakout stars who saw at least 200 percent growth among U.S. audiences. That was enough to propel MrBeast to the top creator spot. Dream, a “Minecraft” gaming channel, was the breakout creator.
“In the U.S., this year’s top trending videos show how creators quickly adapted to the unforeseen challenges of 2020 while also addressing the unique, personal needs of their communities,” said Kevin Allocca, YouTube’s head of culture and trends in a blog post on Tuesday.
Kjellberg is something of a bad boy on YouTube with an extremely devoted following. YouTube highlighted the star in the 2019 year-end review, and Allocca said at the time, “there is no denying he’s the biggest creator in terms of metrics.”
Kjellberg made an appearance in the annual YouTube Rewind in 2019, too, marking the year in which he got married, helped re-popularize the game “Minecraft” and reached 100 million subscribers. This year, YouTube did not release a Rewind video, and celebrated only with its trends of the year. YouTube declined to comment on PewDiePie, but his channel did take a month's hiatus at the start of the year.
Meanwhile, younger YouTube hotshots were gaining in popularity.
YouTube was not the only company to release a yearly synopsis of trends. On Tuesday, Giphy, the GIF-sharing service, released the top 25 GIFs of the year, and Spotify named the top artists and podcasts of the year. This year’s traditional lists are becoming showcases to reminisce on a tumultuous period marked by COVID-19, racial injustice protests and a contentious election.
YouTube’s year-end review is no different. The No. 1 video of the year was posted to Netflix Is a Joke, a channel run by the streaming service. Netflix’s top trending video was a comedic monologue from Dave Chappelle, titled “8:46,” a reference to the police killing of George Floyd.
The music video charts featured Cardi B’s “WAP” with Megan Thee Stallion at No. 5. The No. 1 music video was Future’s “Life Is Good” with Drake.
In the ads category, Nike’s “Never Too Far Down: You Can’t Stop Us” was No. 1 with 117.7 million views in a month. Super Bowl ads also dominated the top 10, making up five of the entries. The ads included, HyundaiUSA’s “Smaht Pahk” at No. 3 and TurboTax’s “All People Are Tax People Remix” with 33.9 million views at No. 5.