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I mean, can you believe this? Like the idea that this is a "YouTube channel" is so preposterous. There isn't a name for what this is, and I'm OK with that. I recognize that the focus on enjoyment and accomplishment (and the lack of focus on frustrations) means that this community is better at some things than other things. But I'm glad to be realizing that not everything has to be everything.

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Good morning John.

I am often tempted to make videos about whatever is most frustrating to me at the moment when. I’m about to make a video.

And that is a bad impulse. It’s kind of selfish because one, it isn’t really focused on what’s the most broken about the world, just on what annoys me the most. But also the thing that’s annoying me is also very likely to just be something that also annoys you.

It’s not like there’s a bunch of people out in Nerdfighteria who have really deep disagreements with me about vaccines for example. Like I asked on Twitter if people who could get vaccinated have and like, Nerdfighteria is the most vaccinated state in America. So it’s selfish because it’s more me talking about my own gripes than what’s actually broken about the world.

And it’s not impactful because I’m just griping to people who agree with me. But there’s an even more important reason not to do it and I don’t think I would have realized that if it hadn’t been Esther day this week with all of the lovely things that happened around that. Which reminded me what is so remarkable about this community.

Nerdfighteria is the community that launched a thousand projects. It is an extremely productive place. We have together made some really amazing things.

But importantly, there have also been projects that have gone nowhere. Like back in the day, I wanted to start an organization called Read it 1st which encouraged people to read the book before they watched the movie or the. TV show.

But then a bunch of people inside this community were like, “Hank why are you trying to control how someone enjoys their stuff?” And initially I pushed back against that because that’s what you do when somebody finds a reason why your idea might not be good. But eventually I realized, I mean yeah. That’s pretty counter to the vibe.

But the things that have vibed, whether they’re huge now like Crash Course or they’ve really helped creators make a living like DFTBA records. Or they’re just shockingly impactful like the Awesome Socks Club that has now raised over $600,000 for Partners in Health. Those things are no longer Nerdfighter projects they’re having impacts way outside of us.

Because of us. John, we’ve worked on projects that are by any measure much bigger than this community. Crash Course has 4 times more subscribers than vlogbrothers.

It reaches way more people than this channel, and it has a big impact on the people it reaches. It is by any measure a bigger deal than vlogbrothers but it is not a bigger deal to me. This is the core of what we do, and also of course without it Crash Course would absolutely not exist.

Now I don’t want to pretend like none of this is weird. This is absolutely weird. We didn’t know what we were doing when we started, we still kind of don’t know what we’re doing now.

This isn’t a thing that you can go to school to learn. And I think everybody here understands that we’re not trying to be perfect. Like the idea of being perfect makes me nauseated.

I don’t know how to do it. I don’t know how to think about what it might be. We are trying to enjoy things together, learn together, and do positive and impactful things together.

Because there is so much value in a positive and constructive community that shares values. And communities like that just don’t feel common these days. Like one of my most successful videos is my 26 rants video where I just like yell about stuff.

But I never did another one of those. And not because I’m not annoyed by stuff. Whereas I did do a bunch of Dad joke videos, and now do a dad joke at the beginning of every Dear Hank and John because like that’s the vibe.

I think it’s very important to be in groups of people that are based on common enjoyment and appreciation and also like mutual accomplishment. And I’m really glad that I’m a part of some of those communities, including most importantly this one. It’s not simple, it’s not going to be perfect.

Nobody ever gets everything exactly right. But one of the foundations of this place, I think, is not to focus on what is making us the most frustrated or annoyed or powerless, but instead to focus on what we can do with what we have. And I’m excited to keep doing that with you.

John, I’ll see you on Tuesday.