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YouTube is Dying and Something New is Coming
I called it
I like YouTube.
As a film enthusiast who thrives on watching and creating content, YouTube has become my go-to platform for endless discovery, boundless creativity, and meaningful connections. It's like having the entire Library of Congress at your fingertips.
That said, it’s safe to say that YouTube is dead — creatively and artistically.
“YouTube is inevitably heading towards being like television, but they never told their creators this,” Jamie Cohen, a professor of new media at Molloy College, told USA Today in 2018.
It’s not just that YouTube has been overrun by low-quality content, clickbait and outright scams and malware posing as advertising. It’s not that it’s a Huxleyan and Orwellian nightmare where 3000 words are banned and the biggest podcaster in the world was driven off due to censorship.
Well, it is that.
But it’s also that YouTube’s “Golden Era” is clearly over.
Independent creators are no longer being discovered and nurtured by the platform. The days of gumshoes and auteurs making brilliant, weird and wonderful videos in their bedrooms and attics and uploading them to YouTube are slowing down.
Now something new is coming — something that will take the best of YouTube and make it even better.
YouTube is the Next MySpace
Remember MySpace? It was the social media platform Du Jour before it was eradicated from space by Facebook.
Nobody thought MySpace would die; it was a sure thing, like YouTube is today.
But MySpace died for the same two reasons that haunt YouTube:
Hollywood is like heroin, it’s an incredible high but it will kill you.
However, celebrities are what’s best for the YouTube algorithm. It’s safe, it’s innocuous, and it’s oh-so-clickable.
So YouTube started pushing for celebs in 2017 after the first “adpocalypse,” which was a mass demonetization of small channels that didn’t produce “ad-friendly content.”
YouTube executives like Robert Kyncl weren’t even trying to hide their Hollywood bias. At a 2018 New York City presentation, independent YouTubers were nowhere to be found. Instead, there was the YouTube the company wants advertisers to see: Ariana Grande on Vevo, Kevin Hart and Demi Lovato, and clips from The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.
YouTube is a dead platform unless you're already established.
Even if YouTube wasn’t shooting itself repeatedly in the foot, a concept known as “entropy” is taking its toll. Everything that dies, dies because it becomes too big and unwieldy and bureaucratic and YouTube is no different.
The platform that was once the Wild West of creativity has been tamed and homogenized by commercial interests.
Basically, 90% of the internet is lost.
The Next YouTube
If YouTube wants to drive everyone off its platform, someone needs to come up with the next big thing. It won’t be easy. YouTube has 2 billion daily active users (a number which is also slowing). But as long as YouTube keeps shooting itself in the foot, it’s a matter of time. Straight entropy.
What the next big thing will need to do is what YouTube didn’t do a few years ago: pay creators fairly (not demonizing arbitrarily), not censor, and not tinker randomly with the algorithm.
Let creators do their thing and make money.
So, what’s the next big thing?
I have three candidates.
The first is Twitter.
I called it.
I told you Twitter was the new YouTube back in October.
Elon spelled it out quite clearly that he had plans to dethrone YouTube and make Twitter the “Everything Platform:”
“Splitting revenue with video creators like YouTube could be a huge unlock. We could literally give video creators 100% of their ad revenue up to $1m then do split.”
— Elon Musk Private Twitter Texts
And you know what just happened today? New Tucker Carlson video just dropped where he interviews the Chief of Police for the Capitol building.
He already has 6.1 million views… or more than any mainstream media outlet gets in a week … or what only the .01% of YouTubers get in a year.
Side note: Tucker blows the lid off of Jan 6.
The uni-party deep state is fucked.
I’m in the boat that Jan 6 was a circus of idiots way in over their heads (who also were probably egged on by the 3-letter alphabet agencies). It wasn’t some GRAND insurrection spearheaded by Trump. The amount of ammunition contained in these 50 minutes is enough for even the most pedestrian civilian to combat the gaslighting and MSM brainwashing about Jan 6.
In any matter, yeah, YouTube.
When you have the biggest names in the world like Tucker Carlson, Andrew Tate and small creators with loyal fanbases who have monetized through Twitter’s new subscription feature it will undoubtedly give YouTube a good scare.
Rumble is a censorship-free video hosting platform where users can upload their short films or videos and create their own channels, just like on YouTube. They’ve recently received a spike of conservative content creators that left YouTube like journalist Glenn Greenwald and Andrew Tate.
Seriously check out Greenwald. He’s the best in the biz:
Now, I don’t care about Rumble’s right-leaning user base.
They let anyone in whether you’re a Reaganite or a devout Marxist.
I’m more interested in their business model, which pays channels, including the little guys, from day one.
You can think of Rumble and YouTube as skyscrapers. YouTube is 40 floors up and celebrities are using helicopters to fly to the top while you can’t even use the elevator. You have to use the stairs, and even then, you might not make it because you’re a fat, out-of-shape piece of human waste. #Inspiration.
Rumble, on the other hand, is a 10-story building and everyone can take the elevator to the top. You don’t have to be a celebrity, you just have to create good content.
In 2022, Prabhakar Raghavan, a senior vice president at Google, revealed eye-opening findings: almost 40% of young people are ditching YouTube and Google and flocking towards TikTok and Facebook's Instagram to satisfy their curiosity.
TikTok is the fastest-growing social media platform in the world. In just three years the Chinese social media app has amassed over 1 billion active users; and in the first quarter of 2020, TikTok generated the highest download for any app ever in a single quarter.
“Back in its golden age the prevailing culture on YouTube was one of creativity, excitement, and virality; anyone could make it big on the platform with just one viral video. This isn’t the case nowadays. YouTube’s demonization of new creators played right into TikTok’s hands.”
— Moon, independent journalist.
I actually don’t mind TikTok.
I use it maybe once a week; it’s clearly not for me or maybe even many of you. But I get the appeal —and growing your content is much easier which is a huge plus.
The Final Option: Give Up
“The problem with being a YouTuber or an online entertainer is that you constantly have to outdo yourself. If you make videos every single day, it’s really tough to keep people interested and keep them coming back.”
I get it. The internet can be a soulless, cruel place.
The comments section is a cesspool of ignorance and hate.
You’re creative, but you’re not getting the views or subscribers you deserve.
You’re thinking about giving up.
I’ve been there.
But don’t give up just yet.
I can’t tell you exactly what the next big thing is, but I can tell you that YouTube is not it for the next frontier of content creators. It’s as corporate as it gets and the algorithm is a fickle mess.
There's some fresh and fascinating shit happening on all these platforms, and they might just be the golden ticket for getting your content out there or finding your new favorite creator.
Give one of them a try and don’t look back.
Thanks for reading and have a great weekend!