A couple of weeks ago I celebrated the arrival of the off-season as I had finally run out of new sets to review. I saw that another wave was coming on August 1, but I figured I had plenty of time to really focus on MOC building. Well, things didn't go according to plan, as only a few days after that post the new Mega Bloks Halo and LEGO Scooby Doo & Minecraft sets started hitting stores and I went back into full review production mode. Of course, all that did was shuffle time around. August 1 is tomorrow and instead of beginning this final Summer burst of work, I'm finishing it up! New Mega Bloks Call of Duty & Terminator sets are yet to be covered as well as 2 or 3 more LEGO sets, but that's no biggie at all.
When I was looking back at the first half of the year to collect a few surprising statistics for the aforementioned celebratory post, though, I also discovered something very troubling, almost depressing. Though my wife & I had literally doubled productivity on reviews versus last year and added speed build videos back into the mix, doubling viewership, our income from YouTube had actually gone down. Think about that for a second. You work more than twice as hard, you get more than twice as much done, and you receive less in return. Ouch?
It didn't take much investigation to get to the bottom of it. In the first quarter of the year, I made the decision to disable non-skippable video ads across my entire account. At the time, I was looking at the previous year's data, and I expected to lose 25-35% of my per-view ad revenue as a result of this change. It was a calculated loss I was ready & willing to accept to save viewers like you from the annoyance of those most obtrusive ads, though in truth, nobody had complained about them since every channel has them and they're standard & commonplace. I just really don't like contributing to known annoyance & discomfort of people, even if they don't complain about it, especially if I can just make a reasonable personal sacrifice to avoid it.
Unfortunately the personal sacrifice ended up being completely unreasonable, more than double what I expected due to general industry-wide changes in the values of different types of ads. Meanwhile, viewers didn't seem to have noticed the change at all, since again, non-skippable ads are just everywhere.
With all of this new information, though, nothing has changed in how I feel about the matter. I still dislike non-skippable ads, and I still want to give up a reasonable portion of my income to keep some of the inconvenience away from all of you viewers, especially the biggest fans, the dedicated subscribers, the regular viewers. Thus, for now and for as long as I can, I am going to continue to publish my videos with non-skippable ads disabled! Yes, I'm being stubborn about it. I'm going to keep those most aggressive ads off my videos until all of you biggest fans, dedicated subscribers, and regular viewers have consumed the content and viewership has subsided to the ambient trickle of random passers-by finding stuff in searches & related video results.
TL;DR: I'm turning non-skippable ads back on for older videos you've already seen, but keeping them off for all of the newest stuff you haven't yet seen.