There are thousands of channels on YouTube that are abandoned by their creators every day and it’s not surprising.
As of 2020, there are 1.7 billion YouTube users, and more than 500 hours of footage is uploaded to the website every single day. That means competition on YouTube is tough than ever before. What is not usual is when a YouTuber who has a huge number of subscribers disappears suddenly.
From pranksters to vegan lifestyle gurus, the following YouTube stars completely disappeared.
RedKeyMon a video game streamer with 1.6 million subscribers suddenly stopped making videos at the height of its fame in May 2015. Everyone thought he was dead because nobody in their right mind would walk away from such a successful channel.
His last video alone “Awesome GTA Stunts And Fails #2” pulled in more than 107 million views so far!
He left with a mysterious note. “You never know,” he said in one of his last video comments, leaving a possibility of return.
“The more videos I made, the more I was becoming like a character of myself,” he told the magazine. “Every time I turned on the camera, it was like I was putting on this facade, and I wasn’t really getting anything real out of it. It got to a point where it was too tiring for me to keep up the act.”
Kyle Myers (FPS Russia)
Kyle Myers started YouTube in 2010 and quickly rose to become one of the YouTube titans playing a trigger-happy explosives nut who called himself Dmitri Potapoff and spoke with a Russian accent on his channel FPSRussia, which was once one of the top ten most subscribed channels on the platform.
Myers partnered with Keith Ratliff a gunshop owner who supplies him with unlimited ammo and explosives. However, after a few months, he was forced to go solo in 2013 after Ratliff was reportedly shot dead at his gun shop.
Myers carried on running the channel after Ratliff’s (still unsolved) murder pulling in serious views when it suddenly disappeared. The last video Myers uploaded was in April 2016–a flamethrower demonstration that was watched more than 3.2 million times.
Myers was rumored that he’d been arrested on drug charges but he resurfaced in 2017. Then Georgia Police authorities raided Myers’s property after he allegedly received a substance known as Butane honey oil in the mail. They reportedly confiscated the drug and numerous weapons.
Australian model, Essena O’Neill had the world of social media’s attention. She’s also a vegan vlogger with more than a million followers on Instagram and YouTube. But today her Instagram feed only has a single picture on it (a photo of a Morley street art piece that says, “I like the real you more than the Instagram you,”) and her YouTube channel only has three videos, the last of which (“Why I Really am Quitting) was uploaded in 2015.
“I found myself drowning in the illusion,” she said in her last video. “Social media isn’t real. It’s purely contrived images and edited clips ranked against each other. It’s a system based on social approval, likes and dislikes, validation in views, success in followers. It’s perfectly orchestrated judgment. And it consumed me.”
Her followers thought that her disappearance was some kind of publicity stunt that wouldn’t last more than a couple of weeks, but O’Neill stick to her promise and practically disappeared.
Kevin Wu (KevJumba)
Known on YouTube as KevJumba, Wu had the third-most subscribed channel in 2008. Despite that, he became less interested in YouTube and more focused on making it in Hollywood, but the comedian’s fledgling acting career was tragically cut short.
In 2015, Wu was hit by a car in Los Angeles, breaking his spine and endured multiple surgeries, and suffered mental health problems in the aftermath.
“I was slowly losing the ability to gauge where I was,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “My mood started to swing because every time they found something wrong with my body, I was trying to downplay it.”
Considered a danger to himself, Wu was booked into a mental health facility.
After his recovery, there were rumors that Wu joined a cult during his recovery, but he insists the Buddhist organizations he became involved with are no such thing.
Yousef Erakat (Fousey)
Yousef Erakat’s (a Palestinian descent) channel, fouseyTUBE, is massive. It has more than 10 million subscribers, but the channel has ruthless rise and fall.
In 2016, the vlogger and prankster disappeared for a period of six months after his struggles with depression and mental illness become too much to handle. The cause of his depression was actually YouTube itself. He had troubles with people’s comments were having on him.
“Every single day I chose not to pick up this camera because I’m terrified,” he said in a since-deleted video (via TubeFilter.) “I’m terrified about what the world has to say about me, I’m terrified about how people perceive me, and I’m terrified of people’s opinions. I’m terrified of reading anything about myself because I lost so much sense of who I am as a person that everything I started believing is what I read.”
But after a year, Erakat resurfaced to YouTube with a new channel that features his parents and family, though it hasn’t reached the same levels of viewership his other channels enjoy just yet. At the time of this writing, the KATS family vlog has a little more than 620,000 subs.
Lissa Donovan (LisaNova)
Lissa Donovan, an aspiring actress started her channel in 2006 when YouTube was still starting, and LisaNova was making the main page on the regular.
One year after she created her channel, the MADtv casting director noticed her channel and asked her to try out for the show. She aced the audition and made her debut on the long-running sketch show in February 2007, but she continued making videos in her channel often killing off and resurrecting her LisaNova character.
In 2009, she founded Maker Studios (YouTube’s first multi-channel network), she stopped making videos–this time for real. Eventually, Disney bought Maker for $500 million in 2014 Donovan hasn’t been heard from since.