The YouTube Culture Conversation

It's been a huge topic on YouTube lately... so, what's the state of YouTube's "celebrity" culture?
By Mai Linh Nguyen
  • Ever since people started becoming professional YouTubers, the conversation of YouTube culture has always been there. However, the conversation has become more prominent as of late, now that some YouTubers are seen as having mainstream celebrity status. With everyone outside of YouTube starting to pay attention to YouTubers, it’s hard to believe they aren’t mainstream celebrities.

    So, what put this conversation on a roll again? Well, the conversation has been going on for a while on Tumblr after a string of sexual and emotional abuse accusations and confessions were made on the social media platform. Some true, some false. But that wave of posts started the conversation of what kind of relationships YouTubers have with their viewers.

    YouTuber Anthony D’Angelo decided to explore the science of psychology of YouTube celebrity:

  • The Science and Dangers of YouTube Celebrity

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  • Presumably, many What’s Trending readers haven’t heard of Anthony. But his video did instigate some discussion on the topic, including some thoughts from the Vlogbrothers’ Hank Green:

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  • The conversation then continued when Louise (SprinkleOfGlitter) posted a video talking about the YouTuber-viewer relationship. Louise goes over how she feels about people idolizing their favorite YouTubers, and her experience with meeting fans at events like Playlist Live and VidCon.

  • YouTube Culture | Sprinkle of Glitter

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  • Louise talks about being just a normal person, who also happens to make online video content. She talks about the process of meet and greet lines at events, and how she never actually gets to know her viewers. To which Karen Kavett responded, telling people what it’s like to have one foot in both being a YouTuber and a viewer.

  • Re: YouTube Culture

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  • Karen talks about the one-sided relationships that viewers have with creators, and why the usual experience of meeting a viewer is unfulfilling. Having viewers that know so much about a content creator, without the content creator being able to reciprocate. Karen even gives on perspective on whether fans truly want to be friends with famous people, or just like the idea of being friends with the images that these people project.

  • The Idealization of YouTubers

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  • Up and coming YouTubers Ashley Mardell and JamesChats added to the conversation, focusing on the idealization of YouTubers. They talk more on being told by their viewers how “perfect” they are, so James and Ashley both decided to share some flaws about themselves with their communities.

  • YouTube Culture?

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  • Most recently, YouTube’s most subscribed, PewDiePie jumped in on the conversation. Felix assured us that all numbers aside, no YouTuber is above any viewer or other YouTuber. He talks about the envy people show whenever he tweets or replies to someone else. Felix wants his viewers to just see him as someone who enjoys web videos as much as they do.

    The bigger YouTube seems to get, the less people see what a lonely activity it can be. Sitting in a room by yourself, talking to a camera, and editing for hours on end. Now, too many people see it as an easier means to fame, instead of using the internet for what it was made for…making a connection.

    So, what are your thoughts on the conversation? Is the Beatlemania-esque treatment of YouTubers getting out of control? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below of tweet us @WhatsTrending