In memoriam of Unus Annus

Time has run out in Unus Annus’s one year life span, as the viral YouTube channel said goodbye on Friday.

Emily Freeborn, Web Editor-in-Chief

Unus Annus, a viral YouTube channel created by Mark Fischbach (Markiplier) and Ethan Nestor (CrankGameplays), called their time of death at midnight on Friday after a twelve hour livestream. Once the clock struck twelve, the two, along with their producer, Amy Nelson, deleted the entirety of their content together.

For the past year, the channel featured comedic, click-bait style content typical of YouTube–but with a twist. In their first video, the duo explained that didn’t want to take each second of their lives for granted. Under the alter egos of “Unus” and “Annus,” whichtranslate as “One Year,” they explained the channel’s limited life span. After one year, their content and merchandise would be effectively erased from the internet.

“It went from the conception of the idea to it coming out in almost two weeks,” Nelson said.

Mark and Ethan uploaded a new video every day at 12 p.m. starting on Nov. 6 of last year and ending with Friday’s livestream. Every video featured Memento Mori, or a reminder of death, such as the ticking of a running clock, existential rants, or clips of funerals layered over the feed.

“Death is the only thing that gives life meaning,” Fischbach said.

The bucket list activities that the two engage in led some fans to speculate that the creators themselves were dying. Others noted that the creators could have designed it to push the boundaries of YouTube’s community guidelines.

“No one has done this before,” Nestor said.

The two believe that their success was due to the creativity that their promise of deletion offered. For them, it was liberating to create for the sake of creating rather than just to get views.

“[It was] pure, raw creativity,” Fischbach said. “It didn’t matter what we did, it didn’t matter how people responded.”

Fans have been hard at work trying to preserve the channel and begging the creators to reconsider their promise. Since Friday, few official archives have popped up that preserve the channel’s recently deleted content. Unus Annus had over four million subscribers when it ended.

“It’s nice to see that the fans have gotten so attached to it,” Fischbach said.

During the live, the two watched some of their favorite videos and looked at fan art. The

hashtag “Unus Annus Out of Context” trended number one in the world on Twitter and their merchandise site experienced continuous crashes, with 130,000 people on it at one point.

The creators admitted the strain that the rigorous upload schedule had on their lives, but decided that it was worth it.

“365 days is enough to change a life,” Fischbach said.