- Chris Jackson/Getty
- PewDiePie briefly lost his crown as the owner of the YouTube channel with the most subscribers.
- The Bollywood channel T-Series edged ahead for more than two hours on Monday morning.
- PewDiePie and several other YouTubers have campaigned to keep the vlogger on top.
PewDiePie, the YouTube star whose real name is Felix Kjellberg, was briefly dethroned on Monday as the owner of the YouTube channel with the most subscribers.
T-Series, a Bollywood production company known for releasing lavish music videos, had for months been poised to overtake PewDiePie, and for eight minutes on February 22, it did. On Monday morning, it carved out a subscriber lead that lasted more than two hours.
Each channel boasts nearly 90 million subscribers, but T-Series had gained a narrow lead of 50,000 as of Monday.
After T-Series pulled ahead, PewDiePie retweeted a call for people to subscribe to his channel.
????RED ALERT???? ????T-SERIES HAS PASSED PEWDIEPIE????
FIGHT BACK!, FIGHT BACK THIS CANNOT BE THE END!!
LETS GO, THE GAP IS NOW: -57
— PewDiePie subgap bot (@subgap) March 18, 2019
PewDiePie has launched a campaign to maintain his top spot, which he has held since 2013. Several other YouTubers have rallied to his cause, and he got Tesla CEO Elon Musk on his show last month in a bid to stay ahead.
The campaign gained notoriety last week as reports emerged that the gunman behind the massacre in Christchurch, New Zealand, yelled “subscribe to PewDiePie” during the attack. PewDiePie said on Twitter that he felt “absolutely sickened having my name uttered by this person.”