Previous: Understand the Sequester (Spoiler: It's Bananas.)
Next: Ads Work...but for Whom?



View count:401,290
Last sync:2023-11-07 07:30
In which Hank gets a little self-indulgent and talks about YouTube and content and business and culture and etc.





Email with one of the following:
DESIGN in the subject line, links to examples of websites and user interfaces that you have designed. An emphasis on user experience and simplicity preferred.

DEVELOPMENT in the subject line. Site will likely be developed in Ruby. Please let us know particularly of any experience you have with APIs, payment handling, and user databases.

DOMAIN in the subject line. Let us know what domain names you have lying around unused and what (hopefully discounted) prices you'd accept.

Thanks to everyone for being a part of it.
Good morning, John. So I've been thinking a lot about YouTube lately. What it is, what it does, what is happening to it... maybe, maybe, maybe I've been having a little bit of a creative crisis lately, which is not unusual; it happens to me; it's part of my cycle. And of course YouTube has never been a static thing, it has been changing constantly and Vlogbrothers has changed over the years as well. But as YouTube becomes a bigger cultural force and more people are paying attention to it, in big cities with suits on, I just was thinking about what's going to happen to this place that we have come to love. It's starting, to me, to look more like the old system with fewer pots with more money in each pot, instead of lots of pots with the money spread out. More money's fine, but not fewer pots. So, I'm getting a little worried that in the future when the big stuff will be able to support itself, ninety-nine percent of the people will watch one percent of the content, and the one percent of the content will be the same, like boring stuff that's currently on television and there will be no new innovation and no new cool things happening and there will be rich people who have a vested interest in keeping it that way. And I don't want to inflate the power of the people watching this video and I don't want to put too much responsibility on their shoulders, but I think it's our job to make sure that that stuff doesn't happen. And I don't think it's going to be that hard, but I don't think that it's going to happen on its own. One of the perks for the Project for Awesome was to decide the topic of a Vlogbrothers video, and a lot of those will be uploaded unlisted and people will be able to see them, but they won't go live to all subscribers. But Barbie Still asked us to just make a video about something the Vlogbrothers care a lot about, and so this video is for her. Because online video is very important to me, I run VidCon, for crying out loud, and I think online video's more than important to me, I think it's important culturally right now and I think it's gonna be important historically. So I want people to be conscious of what's going on right now; about how we consume content and the kind of stuff we want and what makes this rewarding. And what makes it different, you know, and so I want to keep doing things... with... the other side of the camera, you know. One, the Hank's Face Remix Contest, I put a tracker to a torrent of the Hank's Face Stems, and people who know how to remix video, you could remix that into whatever you want. And the person who wins will get prizes and glory and who cares? We'll probably, maybe, we'll figure out something, but mostly...WHO CARES? Second, the GIFMASTER AWARDS. John and I talked about this and we think that animated GIFs are an under appreciated art form. And so, if you would like to create some exceptionally good GIFs, it doesn't have to be Vlogbrothers GIFs, it can be whatever you want, but you can tag them with #gifmaster and we'll go through those tags and we will select winners of the GIFMASTER award. And there may actually be something physical to go along with this, but I'm not guaranteeing anything, 'cause you know what happen when we guarantee stuff. Third, I miss vlogging more, so I'm going to be vlogging every day in April and I encourage you to do the same. And fourth, I want to change the business of content. I don't like it the way that it is that much. The business part - I like the content part very much, obviously. But I don't like you can have a project like the Brain Scoop, which has 50,000 really dedicated people in its community, but still like can't pay for itself, like can't be self sustaining, 'cause I just don't think advertising is the right model. I don't even like advertising, really, but... I can't... that's a bigger thing, I don't have time for that right now. I don't want to change the content, I want to change the model, which hopefully will lead to more, better content. And I need help with this, so designers, developers, there's a link in the description for how to apply to work with me on this. Also, if you have any short, snappy domain names, if you like to, would not...using 'em. And finally, I just want to talk about this. So in the comments and in Our Pants and on the Nerdfighter subreddit, and wherever else conversations happen in Nerdfighteria, let's talk about what we love about Nerdfighteria, about how broaden instead of narrowing, about how we discover content, and about what we find rewarding and interesting about online video, and just content in general. And do you think that there might be a better way to fund it, because I'm tired of watching all the fancy business-y people that I meet trying to apply their old rules to our new system. Let's make some new rules. John, I'll see you on Tuesday.