Oh, we’re talking YouTube again. Okay.
YouTube’s slogan is or was (I don’t know if they still use it) “broadcast yourself”. It was a platform for ordinary people to post cute or fun videos of themselves doing stuff or commenting on certain issues or events. While there were and are people who would post TV shows and movies they didn’t have the rights to, YouTube was about creator-made content, without the big studios and big name celebrities. In time, as video editing software and special effects software as well as updated video cameras, microphone set-ups, capture devices for video games, and other equipment and software once reserved for big and small studios became fiscally accessible to everyone else, YouTube, along with sites like Blip, Dailymotion, Vimeo, and just hosting stuff yourself somewhere brought a new kind of celebrity, one that didn’t need a Hollywood sized budget to drive its success, and created new forms of entertainment that couldn’t exist honestly or properly in mainstream media.
However, mainstream media took notice and not just because of those unapproved uploads I mentioned. In fact some distributors have worked deals to air smaller content that wouldn’t be picked up by TV, and even a few that are but on smaller channels, on YouTube. Maker Studios dismantled and destroyed Blip so it would get picked up by Disney, as more and more Hollywood studios see the potential of streaming but don’t like to share money and want as much of it as possible. Before that they would post trailers and previews for upcoming movies and TV shows. But the YouTube celebrity were still mostly people who wouldn’t make it in the hard to break through Hollywood circles and formed their own identity, some of them even making that break into larger media with their own shows on major and extended television channels or even the music industry. That didn’t change what a YouTube celebrity is.
In the last few years this has changed, as rich celebrities who can afford editors and high-end equipment have started making their own presence on the platform, which threatens to overshadow the “broadcast yourself” nature that YouTube was founded on. YouTube creator Ryder, also known by the screenname Footofaferret and host of A Brief History, goes into better detail than I can why the YouTube community isn’t happy with this invasion of the bigger celebrities and their impact on smaller ones and the direction Google might take YouTube.
Catch A Brief History on Footofaferret’s YouTube channel.