In today's age, everyone knows what Youtube is, essentially. Old or new, no matter what generation, we've all watched something on this site. From cat videos to gaming content, there is literally something for everyone on here. I, myself, have spent countless hours watching the likes of PewDiePie and other big YouTubers. What will happen, though, when those YouTubers are driven off the platform by shoddy business practices and bad policies? Let's delve into what Youtube was, is, and will become.
The Start of Youtube
Back in 2005, during Youtube's conception, its sole purpose was to provide videos that you made to people around the world. In a way it worked, a little website made by a few ex-Amazon workers eventually blew up into a website with about 1.5 billion visitors monthly. This eventually evolved into the website having enough of a substantial profit, that they could eventually start paying a small group of creators that went through a much more rigorous process than that of which you've seen in recent years. That made sure, though, that there where enough ads for all of the creators of the program. As the years progressed and Google bought out Youtube, the policy changed. This made it so anyone could really make money off of Youtube, no matter how small the profit. This, essentially, was what drew so many people into the Youtube community. To chase what could be the career they always wanted. This was all fine and dandy, but disaster struck.
The Adpocalypse, as many YouTubers called it, was a drought of ads on Youtube caused by one of the biggest entertainers on the platform. It was said that advertisers ads where being showed on, "white supremacist content and other racially-charged videos. Apparently, PewDiePie's content was taken out of context by those in the Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. Those two news platforms paid as little attention to the actual context of the video, and instead went on to take pieces of screenshots and videos to support their shoddy hit piece. This, of course, caused advertisers to flee the platform. This made Youtube have to reconsider how it posts ads, as to conserve what little they had left and as a way for damage control. This caused a lot of problems within the community and a huge remake of their original deal for creators to make money. Their policy was extremely vague, saying things like, "No vulgar language unless it is tasteful," and such like that. This, of course, brought up the censorship argument within the community. A lot of creators where being demonetized for trivial reasons that Youtube would not even elaborate or fix until recent years. This year, two new policies were put into place. The first one mandated that you must have at least 1,000 subs and at least 4,000 total views, which then posed a new problem, there still weren't enough ads to go around. They then re-did the policy one more time, Saying you needed at least 10,000 subscribers ad 4,000 total hours of watch time. This was sparked during the time Logan Paul started to upload his usual daily vlogs, except he was in Japan this time. He was up to his normal antics of totally disrespecting the people around him when he decided to vlog in suicide forest. Now, this itself wasn't a new or damning thing for any Youtube vlogger, but it was when he took it upon himself to video a dead body hanging from the tree, and then proceed to touch it and take pictures with it, did it spark controversy. At first, nothing was done about it, then the policy mentioned previously came into place as a way for more damage control. This was met with both happiness and criticism by some within the community. Most were angry because this in no way affected Logan Paul in any way, as he was well over those margins. Some were saying that this gave smaller creators a disadvantage, but some also said that this helped maintain ads for those making popular content and that it showed a warning to Logan. This then brings on to the main point of the article.
Due to these things, will Youtube stay at the top of its game?
As things stand right now with Youtube, not having a maintainable way to handle the millions upon millions of creators, will Youtube be able to maintain its position as the creme of the crop? With controversy seemingly spouting out of the website, will the Youtube team's shoddy tries at damage control eventually throw Youtube overboard in the sea of the internet? Only time will tell. With sites like the late vid.me website coming and providing a much better ad policy, it can't really be decided. I think, however, that if Youtube doesn't do something quick, they could lose themselves in the new wave of video streaming sites.