Irish YouTube star joins world’s top earners with €14m in a year

Jacksepticeye, aka Seán McLoughlin, at no 8 in Forbes ranking topped by seven-year-old

Jacksepticeye: Seán McLoughlin has almost 21 million subscribers and more than 10 billion views

Jacksepticeye: Seán McLoughlin has almost 21 million subscribers and more than 10 billion views


Seán McLoughlin, the Irish YouTuber better known to his millions of viewers as Jacksepticeye, earned €14 million between June 2017 and May 2018, according to Forbes’s evaluation of the video platform’s highest-paid stars. That puts him at number eight in the magazine’s top 10.

The 28-year-old from Athlone, who has been uploading his reviews of and commentaries on video games since 2012, has almost 21 million subscribers, and his videos have been watched more than 10 billion times.

McLoughlin has called his videos an “assault on the senses” that people “either love or hate”. He also says his swearing is a key part of his success. “The more you swear the better. People react very positively to that, apparently.”

But a few bad words haven’t kept him from going mainstream, as Forbes points out. McLoughlin has made a series for Disney, is developing content for the live-streaming platform Twitch and has launched a “high-end athleisure and lifestyle line for gamers”, Cloak, with his fellow list member Mark Fischbach (aka Markiplier, whose more than €15 million in earnings puts him at number six in the ranking). Fans have snapped the gear up, according to Forbes: presale items in the range, which includes €70 hoodies and €30 T-shirts, sold out in 48 hours.

McLoughlin’s high profile means his personal life is now reported on: Mail Online and even the BBC were among the news sites to report in October that he had split from his girlfriend of three years, the Danish vlogger Signe Hansen.

The list was topped by a seven-year-old boy who reviews toys. Ryan of Ryan ToysReview earned a staggering $22m (£17.3m).

The Forbes top 10

  1. Ryan ToysReview €19.3 million
  2. Jake Paul €18.8 million
  3. Dude Perfect €17.5 million
  4. DanTDM €16.2 million
  5. Jeffree Star €15.8 million
  6. Markiplier €15.3 million
  7. VanossGaming €14.9 million
  8. Jacksepticeye €14 million
  9. PewDiePie €13.6 million
  10. Logan Paul €12.7 million

Ryan, the star of Ryan ToysReview, has more than 17 million followers and almost 26 billion views. He’s also just seven years old. “Ryan is part of the YouTube trend of unboxing,” Forbes says, “in which content creators film themselves opening up toys, tech products and other consumer goods, explaining different features and, in Ryan’s case, screaming and giggling with enthusiastic delight as he does so.”

The mini millionaire earned almost all of his money from adverts shown before his videos on Ryan ToysReview and his second channel, Ryan’s Family Review; Forbes estimates that YouTube’s biggest stars earn about €4.35 from advertisers per 1,000 views.

In moves that are likely to add millions to his future income, he recently launched Ryan’s World, “a toy and apparel collection sold exclusively at Walmart. The line, which Ryan heavily promotes on his YouTube channel, features a variety of slimes and putties, Ryan action figures, T-shirts, toy cars and more,” according to Forbes. He and his parents have also signed a deal for Amazon and Hulu, the American streaming service, to repackage and distribute his videos. – Additional reporting: PA