YouTube: https://youtube.com/watch?v=ouMeAaAWUEg
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View count:173,139
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Dislikes:270
Comments:1,084
Duration:35:04
Uploaded:2017-10-06
Last sync:2019-06-16 08:50
Even with 35 minutes I feel like I didn't do a great job discussing this issue, which is maybe part of the problem. There isn't a simple solution, but an important part of moving forward is that platforms need to be aware that making advertisers happy and making creators happy are not always the same things.

And since advertisers are having no problems exercising their levarage against YouTube, creators need to do the same. We need features for us, and we need to keep YouTube from being a bland place full of well-dressed, friendly white guys tousling Donald Trump's hair.
Hey.

I have been wanting to make this video/some version of this for a long time and haven't had the time to. I'm now up against the wire as I'm about to go on tour with John and so have no time left to do it in another way, so this is gonna be an unedited rambly video that is gonna take a long time and I apologize. I wish that I could be more efficient with this - it's just a big topic.

So about a year ago I helped start an organization called the Internet Creators Guild with the goal in mind that like, "Hey. There are a lot of people who are making a living doing this now..."

My lamp is still heating up so the lighting is changing.

There are a lot of people who are making a living making internet stuff and there's also a lot of specific needs to that group of people - though they are a very diverse group of people who have a lot of different needs. So it's a hard thing and we're still at the very beginning of it and trying to figure it out and I appreciate everybody who's helped us exist so far while we do that - while the organization does that.

So... but it's a complicated nut to crack and I think that this is a thing YouTube itself has known for a long time. Now here's what we'll say about YouTube: there are a lot of places where you can put content on the internet and none of them pay you. It just doesn't happen. YouTube is the only one that... like it's primary goal isn't monetization, but it does that very well and I don't want to take that away from them that they started to share money with creators back in 2008. Where Facebook has just started to do that and has not done it effectively so far - it has not been able to expand that platform out. Twitter did it for a little bit but immediately failed at it and stopped with the monetization. In fact, Twitter monetized my videos for a while and they told me how much money I made and they never... I've not figured out how to get them to send me a check so I made money, but it's still sitting there in Twitter's bank accounts I guess.

So that's...yeah...YouTube is good at that and I think it's important to recognize that the creative ecosystem of YouTube is very much part based on the economic ecosystem that YouTube created and they did that. I don't know if they did that out of the kindness of their hearts or out of the reaction that someone else was gonna do it and take the creators away or what, but they did it and it's great that we get 55% of the revenue that YouTube makes from our videos.

So it's like... so we'll start there to say nice things about YouTube. So I'm going to make money from this video and it's great, but we're also going to have to talk about advertising and the relationship that that creates between this platform, YouTube, as a bridge between the creators who are making stuff and advertisers who want to make money. YouTube makes its money through these people (advertisers), but also through these people (creators), but also has to keep both of these groups happy, but maybe isn't as worried about creators because where are we gonna go? Facebook, where we're not making any money at all and also we have to compete with the Facebook Feed which is a freaking nightmare place or are we gonna go to a new platform that there won't be an audience on because YouTube isn't just good at helping us make money, they're also pretty good at having a place where an audience is. These people... I can't just say to my audience, "Hey come join me on another platform." Because, one, I'm not going to get all of them, and, two, I'm not going to get any of the people I don't have yet, which YouTube is great at providing.

Any YouTube creator who has been doing this for a few years knows that you don't keep the same audience all the time; there is always substantial churn. So whenever someone sees me in the street and they're like "Hank Green! I used to watch your videos," that's because there's churn. Like, I'm not offended. I've been making videos for 10 years, so the vast majority of people who know who I am don't watch my videos anymore. They got a new thing. Like it's 10 years. Who watches a show for 10 years? Good people. Thank you if you are one of those people. So, you can't just start a new thing so we have to fix this current thing.

I haven't even talked about what the problems are yet!

As we started the Internet Creators Guild it's been both a good and bad time to do that because there have been lots of things for us to think about, but in a lot of ways too many things.

So let's give a first example of a smaller issue that was a big deal and YouTube is helping figure out. A while back YouTube was realizing that it wasn't being allowed in schools and libraries. So just like no... schools and libraries were just saying nope. The Proxy will block it - not even teachers, not even librarians can get on YouTube. So YouTube to work with those whiners, for lack of a better word, they created something called restricted mode and restricted mode didn't have any comments and it was extremely restrictive in terms of what content showed up on it. So there was just a very super restrictive "here is the white list of stuff that is allowed and everything is just sort of not" and then eventually started to shift to like "we're just going to have a really restrictive algorithmic filter which is like anything that might be bad, we're not going to include." This resulted in a world in which schools had YouTube without any mention of homosexuals or homosexuality. So that's a weird side effect of YouTube trying to do a thing. It looked worse than it was. It looked like "YouTube hates gay people," that's sort of how it looked. In fact, what it more was is that YouTube was trying to figure this thing out and they created a solution that was bad. It was not a good situation and it is a problem, but it looks worse than it is. It is still bad though. So YouTube found out... so a bunch of creators found out that restrictive mode basically existed in a weird limbo space where homosexuality didn't exist and they were like, "Oh that's a problem." They said that. They said, "Oh that's a problem," it was the sort of second thing they said. They did eventually say, "Yes we agree this a problem and it's something we're going to work on." And they have been working on it and it's better but it's not fixed at this point.

So that is an example of a thing that the Internet Creators Guild was talking behind the scenes with YouTube and in the front some pressure to put on them.