Hello there. Fancy meeting you here, frolicking around the large mass of green grass that I like to image this blog to be. I believe a warm welcome is in due order going under the assumption that you are reading these posts chronologically and not all over the place.
Some retreating backwards
Before you proceed any further, I believe I’m legally obliged to inform you that this series of posts are in fact part of a school project that I have been doing for quite a bit now and so take that as you will. This series (that I have spontaneously named George) will cover my opinion put in a statement format of ‘The internet has impacted youth culture’. In each post, I will be sharing my opinion of how the internet has affected various aspects linked with teenagers and will greatly appreciate any of your opinions that you can leave in the comment section below! So do feel free (bald eagle screech).
Overview (BLIZZARD OVERWATCH PLIZ)
In this first post, as a digestible opening discussion, I will be kicking things off with my opinion and study on the relationship between the internet and youth entertainment. If I were to describe their relationship, it could be easily summed up as happily married with three children and possibly a dog. With the business of entertainment very reliant on publicity and exposure, the internet has managed to provide both those criterion to the entertainment industry for a comparatively negligible price.
There has also been an emergence of a new brand of entertainment, one that takes advantage of the internet and entertainment both, this being Youtube. Since the sites creation on February 14th 2005, the video streaming site has garnered 1 billion active users each month. To put that in perspective, that figure is the same as every single person in Singapore having 182 accounts each and that isn’t even the most ridiculous statistic! The extreme popularity of this site has created jobs specifically to cater to its ridiculous amount of users and they are called….
The widespread definition of a Youtuber is a content creator on Youtube that has managed to garner a large following and views by producing content for their audience. With just over 30,000 “Youtube Partners” from 27 countries all over the world, this has allowed ordinary people to become paid internet superstars! Youths especially are the target audience of these new generation entertainers acting as role models, movie stars, and even teachers for youths nowadays.
The wide variety of Youtubers allow there to be a wide range of content, each with a different focus, and many of the time heavily focused on youth culture such as gaming, fashion, music, comedy skits and even life advice.
The most prominent example of this is the channel of Pewdiepie. Resting just above the humble 40 million subscriber mark, his content mainly focuses on gaming and has made him the biggest name in all of Youtube. Many teens flock to him daily as a slice in their everyday entertainment, watching videos of him playing games along with videos which keep up with him as a celebrity figure in vlog(video log) format. His influence as the most subscribed Youtube personality has also not gone unnoticed by the general public as his combined 10 billion video views has created an Oprah Effects on games he plays.
Channels such as Nigahiga for example is also another Youtuber with a large following, but rather than gaming, a majority of his videos focus on comedy skits. Beginning his channel much earlier than Pewdiepie’s, his channel has a 16 million subscribers and once even reigned as the top subscribed Youtuber. Now sitting comfortably at number 12th most subscribed Youtuber, Ryan Higa’s channel is another example in the varied content on Youtube and also the competitive field that Youtube is.
But if I were to list them all
The list of entertainment need that Youtube alone has met is unfathomable, from things like relationship advice, to original music, and even some who simply showcase their personality to the world. All these provide such a large pool of entertainment with such availability that youths never have to look far for visual entertainment and completely unrealistic to even attempt to list them all.
What is this downsides thy speaks of?
Such a massive system however does not come with no downsides. For all the benefits that Youtube brings, there have been negative implications for youths in various aspects. One of the largest and most pressing concerns is the lack of control over the flow of content that reaches youth. While most content is good and well, impressionable teenagers may very well fall into bad habits picked up from their Youtuber of choice.
Like Cocaine, but with videos
Of course, this is not the only problem which youths face. The most obvious downside of Youtube is the same as many other entertainment mediums, is addiction. With 4 billions views every single day, many personal experiences along with responses from youths while conducting my survey and interview indicated that over 80% of teenagers spend over 3 hours on youtube. Many gradually become addicted to exclusively watching video content, neglecting their responsibilities.
Not all is lost to the darkness/youtube
Of course, the counterpoint of self-control could be brought up, but is easier said than actually carried out, especially amongst youths who pretty much have a chronic disability known as procrastination. A close relationship between parents and teenagers can also allow teenagers to not go overboard with both downsides mentioned above, but that is more of a grey area.But of course, it is almost no doubt in my mind that the integration of the internet in entertainment and the impact of it is one of the biggest changes in our time. And while there are problems, as there always are, they definitely do not hold a candle to the various progressions that the medium has achieved.
And on that note, I think that’s all the time we have this week, any extra and I’d have to start charging overtime. Until next week, where we’ll all sit around the raving lunatic that is me.