Internet Killed the Video Star: YouTube vs. Television

Haley Jamieson October 17, 2013 1
Internet Killed the Video Star: YouTube vs. Television

Despite its young age, YouTube is becoming one of the top grossing websites worldwide. Due to an increase in content, some speculate it will on day replace TV.  The content creators on YouTube or youtubers don’t believe that will happen until both forms of media have equal resources. Content creators are people who are making money through their partnership with youtube.

In A Conversation with John Green, a video posted by content creator Ben Cook, John Green had said “[he doesn't] think they’ll always be distinct. YouTube and TV are heading towards being one and the same.”

In addition to sharing a YouTube channel with his brother, Hank Green, John Green has also authored  award winning books such as “The Fault In Our Stars” and “Looking for Alaska.” The Green Brothers started a yearly gathering for the YouTube community called Vidcon. Vidcon began in 2010 as way for people on YouTube to convene and share ideas over a three day conference.

Source: Ton Koene; NPR

Author and Content Creator, John Green
Source: Ton Koene; NPR

Green stated that YouTube cannot compete with TV, which has a lot a money  pumped into it. YouTube is the individual creator without a studio backing them. The playing field will be leveled when channels from TV studios and channels formed between YouTubers pop up more.

This approach to collaboration channels on YouTube started before it became a driving force in social media. Shared channels were a way for YouTubers to gain viewership, which made a profit. One way creators made money is displaying ads before or on the sides of their videos.

Lesser known YouTuber Austin Dodge  said “[he] originally started YouTube simply because it was fun” and not as a way to make money. He claims, “YouTube  is still just a place for [him] to meet interesting people and share [his] creations with friends.”


The widespread utilization of YouTube is evident through the use of videos shown in classrooms, the how-to guides, the videos for pure entertainment, and the news. Many creators on YouTube will post a plethora of videos to appeal to different groups and to gain more views. While others have figured how to generate a certain positive response from their viewers that causes them to post the similar videos week after week. Green expressed that 2012 was the year creators learned how to play the YouTube game.

Youtuber Austin Dodge Source: Austin Dodge

Youtuber Austin Dodge
Source: Austin Dodge

Green states there is no formula to creating a popular video on YouTube. Dodge said’[he] likes making what [he] likes watching and hopefully [his] audience enjoys it too.” This is a method for attracting the desired audience from other channels.

The closest thing to a formula is to know the audience of the content posted. This could be considered the YouTube game of how to stay in the forefront of the ever changing idea of popularity in the world.


Featured Image: A student watches YouTube on her phone. Photographer: Rosemary Pastron ’16

One Comment »

  1. Steve October 31, 2013 at 8:00 pm - Reply

    YouTube is the future. Some say a trend, nay a movement, that is embedded in our social fabric and will continue to burrow until it helps to replace broadcast television. Inciteful reporting!

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