YouTuber Complains That Ad-Blockers Lost Him $42k In Revenue Despite Making Over $150k

Daniel Mitchell-Benoit
The upper left portion of the YouTube home page on a laptop screen.
Unsplash | NordWood Themes

YouTube is a database filled with hundreds of thousands, even millions of hours of free content that you can tune into at any time. There's something on the platform for everybody, as no matter what it is you like, someone's made a video about it.

For those making the videos, though, how do they get compensated? The answer would normally be 'advertisements' but with the growing number of people opting to use ad-block software, this becomes more complicated.

Luke Miani has a rather successful YouTube career.

A man in a blue plaid shirt sitting behind an open Macbook with a swirled purple background.
youtube | Luke Miani

He has over 350k subscribers on the platform and makes content surrounding Apple products. He uploads a video every couple of days, and his channel boasts over 68 million views total.

Though, as with any career, he's not without his complaints.

He recently took to Twitter to speak out against those who use ad-blockers.

The upper left corner of the YouTube home page.
Unsplash | Christian Wiediger

Many YouTubers make money by allowing YouTube to host ads on their videos, and they're able to choose just how many ads can roll during any one of their uploads. This feature is called Adsense.

To avoid having to sit through these ads, some people install ad-block software, but this means the creator whose video they're watching makes no money from their view.

The number of people who do this can really add up, according to Miani.

He decided to do some math and came out with the total seen above, that ad-blockers cost him $42,856 in 2021.

Though, that doesn't mean he's not making money at all. He says in a later tweet in the same thread, "I believe in transparency so yeah, you can work out that I made 150K in Adsense last lear and I'm really happy and grateful for that (all pre-tax by the way). But I can't help but think that [it's] unfair to expect creators to work for free. Ads are necessary."

He details his calculations as well.

He says with the $42k he lost, he could have, "hired an editor, rented studio space, spent more time on videos... that's pretty significant."

He finishes this thread by saying, "I really wish I could make free content with no ads but that's literally impossible lmaoo."

The replies to his tweets were full of debate regarding the use of ad-blockers.

The tweet above notes the time saved by not watching ads. When someone replied asking if their time was worth more than the creators who spent hours making free content, someone else responded, "Actually, yeah. My time is worth enough that I don't wish to spend my time willingly watching adverts."

To this, Miani responded, "Translation: My 30 seconds of time is worth more than the 8 hours the creator put into this video."

Others have enough gripe with the YouTube ad system that they refuse to turn ad-blockers off.

Miani replied, "I'm sorry for entertaining you for free."

Then, there were those who considered Miani greedy, like one person who wrote, "You earn 150k for a low-quality background wall video, have sponsors [...] And [it's] still not enough?"

Of course, there were people on his side as well.

Many also offered the alternative, paying for YouTube's subscription service, called YouTube Premium, that eliminates ads from videos while also making sure the creator is still paid.

It's a moral dilemma that certainly got many people thinking about how they engage with free content online, though those who are pro-ad-block didn't seem to be swayed.