Why YouTube is not working for Content Creators

I had that "told you so" moment many many months ago, yet nobody seemed to listen. Now, even big content creators are feeling the pinch.

To give you some context to what I am about to share with you, I have been a content creator on YouTube for almost nine years. Around 2-3 years ago, myself and many fellow content creators saw a shift in the way their channels were promoted. YouTube changed their game and did not communicate this effectively to the thousands of channels that were partners. For want of a better explanation, partners earn revenue from the adverts placed on their videos. Even top performing channels were hit by these changes and only those on their rise to fame seemed to be protected. 

Being what I would term as a "professional content creator" part of my daily, or at least weekly tasks is to keep an eye on my viewing figures. This includes seeing where views are coming from. When this decline in views started to happen, I noticed a shift in how little my channel was being "promoted" by the powers that be. In previous years, I would find myself featured in the "Top Ten Channels" in my particular genre. This was one of the features and promotional activities that had disappeared. Alongside this, YouTube was investing in top channels, injecting cash into their business activities to increase their production value. 

So I had analysed my own channel and moved on to checking how others were doing. I saw the same trend again and again. Reaching out to some content creators, they confirmed the same thing was happening to their views and indeed revenue. It seems the right thing to refrain from naming any of these channels here, as I would not like them to have to deal with any fallout. 

A couple of years ago, I really felt I had to talk to my viewers about the importance of pivoting. How they should change paths, look for new platforms and revenue models. Because I care so much and was aware that many of my viewers were also YouTubers, I wanted to warn them to always be on top of their games. Many of them took absolutely no notice or even argued the fact that I was the only one experiencing a drop in views. It was important for me to take action, so soon after I came across Patreon and launched my own campaign, giving loyal viewers the chance to support what I was doing and trying to achieve.

Patreon is a website/service that allows content creators to gain support from their viewers, readers or listeners. Think of it as a subscription model, whereby the creator offers various perks in exchange for a small monthly contribution. Many viewers rebuffed this model, as they were (and still are) so used to getting their content for free. Only loyal supporters realised that their favourite creators needed support to continue what they are doing.

"I had that 'told you so' moment many many months ago, yet nobody seemed to listen. Now, even big content creators are feeling the pinch." 
Just today, I watched a video from one of my fellow video creators. I was so happy to read the title of the video, but also had another "told you so" moment. Toward the latter part of the video below, Linus starts to talk about the recent changes YouTube have made to their Terms of Service and the need to look at other revenue models. Citing the likes of another revenue generating platform such as Vessel.

Video Credit: LinusTechTips

As a whole, this is a very positive video from Linus, but shows that even channels with over one million subscribers cannot sit on their laurels. They have bills to pay and revenue to generate, to enable them to do what they are passionate about … sharing great content. YouTube either need to sit up and listen. They need to publish clear and concise guidelines. It is also time that they re-evaluated their own business model and offer professional creators on their platform a better deal and more opportunities for stable revenue streams. 

Jon Rettinger, President & Editorial Director of Technobuffalo adds … "This is a very scary time for content creators.  Once reliable streams of revenue are being systematically closed and replaced with a system that is taking chunks out of profits.  TechnoBuffalo is currently partnered with Discovery Communications and is grandfathered into their old Tos, so fortunately, we are not affected.   However big paradigm shifts like this are a primary reason I started the website, as an extra insulatory layer from the changes in the video space.   The best advice I can give is to hedge your bet.  Don’t rely on one single source of revenue.  Diversification, much like in the market is always to your advantage."

Now is the time for change! If you are a viewer, maybe consider supporting your favourite content creators. If you are a content creator, do not get lazy, get creative and research different ways to generate revenue. It would be a shame if we all rely on this "free model" only to find that the only free videos out there are nothing more than a toddler biting a babies finger.

Please do share this article on your social networks. Feel free to follow me on Twitter and leave your comments below.

Facebook video ads coming soon

Facebook have again been playing with the ‘News Feed’ again, no it’s not another layout or tweak to the user interface this time it’s Video advertising. Facebook first announced they were testing video advertisements late last year and rolled out a beta version of their video ad platform to advertisers in December of last year.

Before anybody gets worried about noisy adverts playing in their news feeds there is a silver lining in that video adverts will auto-play however there will not be any sound unless the user actually clicks on the advertisement.

Advertisements will be sold much in the same way that television adverts are sold and will be based on Targeted Gross Rating Points aimed to target a specific audience over a short period of time. Similarly the adverts will also be priced much like a television advert would be with prices ranging from $1 million to $2.5 million initially on launch. Judging from that we can assume that these video ads will be targeted at large corporations rather than small to medium businesses.

Facebook will be using Nielson and Ace Metrix to track and measure the video ads and work with advertisers to review the quality and proposed engagement level of each ad before it becomes available on Facebook.

So when will these adverts start to appear in your news feed? Facebook announced in a blog post that we should be seeing these video advertisements in the next few months. If you feel you really don’t want these adverts or they are too obtrusive it’s likely that popular adblockers will be updated in order to hide these from your news feed.

How do you feel about video ads in your news feed? Do you think they will be obtrusive? or will we just learn to ignore them like we have with other adverts. Let us know what you think in the comments section below.


Did Google just leak the Nexus 5 in KitKat promo vid?

Last night, Google announced KitKat, the next version of its Android operating system. To mark the occasion, it released a video showing the unveiling of the new statue, but what's this? Eagle-eyed phone fans over at Android Policespotted a new Nexus blower in the vid. Could it be the Nexus 5...

Read the full story here... Source: CNET

New Videos Depict 'Champagne' and 'Graphite' iPhone 5S Casings

Two new videos published today give a detailed look at the casings of the "champagne" colored iPhone 5S and the "graphite" 5S, which first showed up in photos earlier this week. 

While there has been a non-stop stream of images and videos depicting the gold iPhone 5S, a video from TLD offers a good overview of both the casing and the structural differences between the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5...

Read the full story here... Source: Mac Rumours

Think Tank Photo’s “About A Photograph™”

About A Photograph : Saul Loeb from thinkTank Photo on Vimeo.


Santa Rosa, Calif. – Think Tank Photo today launched “About A Photograph,” a free video series that features some of the world’s leading photographers recounting the stories behind their images that captured global attention.  Narrated by the actual photographers who took the photos, each short video focuses on the forces that led up to that perfect moment in time when subject, story, setting, equipment, and photographer converged.  

The series can be found at http://blog.thinktankphoto.com/about-a-photograph/

The first video in the series features Agence France-Presse photographer Saul Loeb.  In it he narrates the events that led him to capturing the iconic “Presidential Hug” image from the 2012 United States presidential campaign.  His photo captures a Florida pizza shop owner lifting and bear-hugging a surprised President Obama.  At that moment Loeb felt, “This could end up being the defining photo of the campaign season.”

“About A Photograph” is being produced by Kurt Rogers and Deanne Fitzmaurice, Think Tank Photo’s co-founders and award-winning photojournalists.   The video series will feature current as well as classic and historic photographs that span a range of styles, including documentary/photojournalistic, fine art, nature/environment, sports, and politics.

“When we photojournalists go out on assignment we never know what awaits us,” said Rogers.  “It is through our training as experts in sensing when and where events will unfold that we are able to capture images that best convey the story.  ‘About A Photograph’ allows photographers, students, teachers, historians, and others to get inside the heads of these expert photographers at that fleeting moment of creation.

“The images being featured range from the beautiful to the tragic, from the humorous to the informative,” said Rogers.  “The one trait they share is that all are memorable and capture the essence of visual storytelling.” 

Think Tank Photo will release new “About A Photograph” videos every three weeks. 

About Think Tank Photo

Think Tank Photo is a group of designers and professional photographers focused on studying how photographers work, and developing inventive new carrying solutions to meet their needs. By focusing on “speed” and “accessibility,” we prepare photographers to Be Ready “Before The Moment,” allowing them to document those historic moments that reflect their personal visions and artistic talents. We design products that help photographers travel easier, take pictures faster, and organize their gear more efficiently.


This NASA artist concept shows what the impact may have looked like.

It's a good thing you weren't standing on the moon's Mare Imbrium crater on March 17. You might have been ground into space dust. A meteoroid "the size of a small boulder" crashed into the lunar surface and exploded with a flash so bright, it was visible to the naked eye from Earth.

NASA has been keeping an eye on the moon for eight years, looking for explosions caused by meteoroids. The space agency has seen hundreds of detectable impacts, but none quite so spectacular as this one. "For about one second, the impact site was glowing like a fourth magnitude star," NASA says...

Read the full story here. Souce: CNET

YouTube App for iOS Now Supports Live Streaming

Google on Monday updated its Youtube app for iOS to version 1.3, which allows users to watch live streams right from their mobile device. Many users might be asking themselves where this was over the weekend, when YouTube was streaming Coachella, but better late than never. Right? There’s always next year, and plenty of other events this year when the new functionality will come in handy.

In addition to the headlining feature, the updated YouTube app also introduces minor fixes, including a My Subscriptions feed and support for queuing up videos for TV playback. Of course, the typical performance enhancements are also included in the update, too.

Ever since YouTube was booted from iOS, the app hasn’t exactly been a favorite standalone offering. And while there are alternatives out there, Google is at least slowly unraveling an experience on a par to what it offers on Android.

[Source: TechnoBuffalo]

YouTube lets you relive the old-school look of VHS -- in HD

Sure, watching YouTube videos in HD is great when you want clarity, but maybe you've been yearning for that grainy, tape-recorded look. Marking what's apparently the 57th anniversary of cassette-based video recording, the YouTube team has snuck a VHS tape-shaped button on select videos. Clicking it will the throw a filter over the content, providing a highly distorted and nostalgic feast for the eyes. There's no official list of compatible content, but the option seems to be available on most of the videos on YouTube's native channel. We have a feeling at least one VCR enthusiast will be quite pleased.

[Source: Engadget]

Blackmagic's Production Camera 4K gets full size cinema sensor, $3,995 pricetag

No matter how hard companies try and keep secrets, when it comes to trade show floors there's always the risk that someone will snap a picture and steal their thunder. The latest casualty is Blackmagic, which will be announcing both a Pocket Cinema Camera and this, its Production Camera 4K. We're fairly sure that this will sit above its Cinema Camera, offering a bigger Super 35 sensor, global shutter and Thunderbolt connector alongside the SSD recorder, touchscreen LCD and EF lens mount we found on last year's model. When the company gets around to announcing the hardware properly, it'll be available for $3,995 -- low enough to make even the most ardent of DSLR fans think twice.

[Image Credit: Danielo Garcia]

[Source: Engadget]

Vine now lets you embed your 6-second clips on Websites

Viners rejoice -- you can now embed your 6-second mini-movie masterpieces on Websites. The Twitter-owned service has just added the functionality, itannounced in a blog post.

If you want to give your movies a home on a site, you'll just have to enter some simple code. You can choose from three sizes: 320px, 480px, or 600px. Choosing the "simple" option will embed just the video, while the "postcard" one will retain the clip's original format, complete with text description and location.

Or you can embed your clip using the iOS app, which has just been updated to include the feature. Tap the ellipses in the bottom-right corner, then "Share this post", then "Embed". It might not work on all sites though, so best check before you start shouting about it too much.

Head to our US cousins' site and you'll see our very own Ken German's brief retrospective of old mobile phones. It's like a sped-up shuffle down memory lane.

Vine launched a couple of months ago, but is still only for iOS. Hopefully us Android users will get a version soon. It's been a massive hit though, with 6-second clips springing up everywhere. The new Wolverine film even had its very own trailer on the service. At least it didn't give away the whole story, like a lot of trailers.

If you fancy seeing what people are making vids of, a site called Vinepeek will give you a glimpse. It's pretty addictive viewing, though I don't want to be held responsible if anyone posts anything not safe for work. Viewer discretion is advised, as they used to say at the start ofWorld's Scariest Police Chases.

[Source: CNET]

Samsung Galaxy S4 second teaser video lands

Squee-bloop wheee-eee! Parp the Samsung Galaxy 4 teaser bagpipes, because there's a new official video heralding the coming of the year's most eagerly awaited new smart phone.

Continuing on from the first teaser, there's no sign of the phone itself, as a moppet bafflingly chosen to see the phone first attempts to hide it from prying eyes.

In the first episode, mop-topped Richie Rich-type rich kid Jeremy Maxwell was inexplicably handed the S4, peeking into a box that glowed with an eerie light.

Heading home, Jezzer encounters a curious ladychild and hides in his room for a closer look at the new device. "It's my favourite colour... it's unreal. Totally amazing!" coos the precocious phone-fondler. Are the Oreos a clue that the phone will come in black and white, as rumoured?

[Source: CNET - Click here to read more]

Google Now for iOS? Promo video appears, removed

Users of Android's recent editions have been exposed to Google Now, the "before you know you need it" search tool.

Google Now tries to look ahead at your schedule and physical location to let you quickly access the most relevant results -- traffic for your commute, flight schedules for your trips, local restaurant recommendations and the like. G-Now uses a card metaphor to pop the necessary info right onto your device screen with minimal intervention.

While Siri can handle quite a few of those search chores on iOS, she's not exactly the anticipatory type. SRI's recent Tempo calendar app gives you some of the same halo of savvy around your schedule, but you have to get cleared first (Tempo still has a waiting list several thousand users long).Google's own Field Trip app delivers location-based tidbits (local art, attractions, restaurants and more) as you move around, but it's not integrated into the main search tool.

There may be changes afoot. Engadget unearthed a promotional animated clip that seems to preview a version of Google Now for iOS; the original video appeared on YouTube and has since been removed. In style, content and narration the clip is entirely in line with Google's original promo for the Android launch of Google Now, which lends quite a bit of weight on the authentic side of the scale.

[Source: TUAW - Click here to read the full story]