So I’m not very good at talking to a camera, but I want to get in on the conversation that’s been going on about youtube. First, a few weeks ago, SparkleofGlitter talked about the pressures of being a youtube celebrity and how foreign it was to her, whenever she went to a convention, then Ashley Mardell addressed the situation and I know countless have spoken about this, far more than I could list here, but the breaking point for me was Hannah Hart’s last episode.
It actually made me sad, and that’s saying something. MDK never makes me sad, in fact it’s usually the bright spot in my week, not to sound pathetic, but hey I’m living in a foreign country, dealing with the aftermath of coming out. Anyway, Hannah made a point this week of getting plastered, to almost prove she was still Hannah Hart. I never questioned this fact, but apparently more than a few people on the internet have. Towards the end of the video it turned incredibly poetic. She put a video of her sober self almost pleading to her audience, that she was still her, over the back drop of her drunk self.
Isn’t the fact that the past few months of episodes she’s produced been of a sober Hannah, been more authentic than anything we’ve seen? And hey, we all know youtubers make a living off of ads. Hannah Hart however seems to always choose sponsors that would enlighten us. For god sake she has a book club. Other youtubers promote audible, but they don’t actually discuss the books they have been listening to with their viewers.
I know that there has been, for lack of better word, a rift forming between creators and viewers. As the audience of the site expands this is inevitable. I can’t even imagine the pressure that she and other well-known youtubers are under. They make a living by exposing themselves to the public, yet the public is always thirsting for more blood. In many ways I think the pressure they face is worse, than the usual trials a traditional celebrity has to face. They are their own paparazzi.
We as a community should be happy that youtube has evolved into a forum that in some ways is being taken seriously by more mainstream forms of media. Youtube is democracy at work, we collectively have made all of these people “famous” and we should stand by them and believe that their integrity won’t be lost.
The website has exploded within the past four years and its evolving. I have no idea what it will become, but I still see it as a forum that can ignite change. I can’t tell you how many social causes I have gotten involved in because of some off hand comment or perhaps pre-moted soapbox: ie The Trevor Project, that a youtuber has pushed forth.
So let’s be patient as a community, I still have faith that this platform can be true and honest. We’re all figuring it out together, creators and viewers. Let’s not be so hard on them and let’s remember they’re people too. That’s all I have to say.