Hey, don't look at me like that. Just because I told what the answer wasn't, don't expect to tell what the answer IS. Shit, that's just being greedy. And did you ever stop to think that maybe it was all this running around, demanding the right answers that got us into this situation in the first place? The pain, the agony, the unrelenting neurosis .... really, it's all your fault.
.... seriously, you should know by now not to argue with me.
With great power comes great responsibility. Who would have thought that a phrase pulled from a comic book could have become so cliched?
I'll speak in more cliches after the break. (Probably not. Or maybe yes.)
I once wrote that repetition was funny. I once wrote that repetition was funny. Think about it. Think about it.
YouTube is waning. Or maybe it's our interest in YouTube (and by our interest, I mean mine). Or maybe it's just another phase, not unlike the ones that have come before. Or maybe it's how YouTube has gone increasingly (and embarrassingly) corporate. Or maybe that's just an excuse we make up when we get frustrated that our videos can't crack a hundred views. Yeah, it's THEIR fault.
The theory behind the Krumbination Ning site (which still exists, although I don't know why .... probably because of laziness) was to recreate a pre-corporate youtube environment where a front-page feature meant getting real exposure and the videos belonged to real, creative people. It was a good idea that lacks what all my ideas lack: money and motivation.
What's really interesting, however, is the timeline that I find myself pondering. See, way back in '04-05 (and Middlebrook can attest to this) I had my own website called Wacky Movies. Obviously, this pre-dated youtube when video was still a bit of a challenge to get right on the internet. Well, that's what I did. I used the resources I had and made my internet shows (or iShows as I wanted to call them before I got hit with my very first Cease and Desist .... good times ....)
I think if there was any definitive reason why myself or Middlebrook never really made it big on YouTube, it was because we were busy doing our video thang on our respective websites and we didn't transition to youtube until some of the bigguns had just started gaining their footing. Or maybe I'm just fishing around for something to pin the blame on again. At any rate, the point is that I was doing my video thing before and during the YouTube genesis--and it all started on a personal website.
Then came my first YouTube channel which eventually became my second YouTube channel. I fought hard for partnership, putting so much stock in more visibility and better discoverability, that it didn't matter how saturated YouTube was become--as long as I got my partnership, I'd be happy.
Well, then I got my partnership. And I won't lie, it's a nice achievement. But at the end of the day, guess what? YouTube has become so over-saturated, that partnership doesn't amount to anything. Anything more than custom banners, that is.
Over the past year I've grown more and more disillusioned with my space on YouTube. I experimented with Krumbination, trying to discover some of the lost magic. And this year, I find myself hurling towards a destination that I can't yet see, I think I'm finally noticing YouTube in my review mirror.
It's started mundanely enough: I've stopped monetizing my videos. And really, isn't that what partnership is about? With no ads, where's the point? And yet, really, are those damn pop-up ads anything more than a nuisance? They certainly don't deliver any kind of worthwhile paycheck. And for everyone who is still holding on to fantasy/pipe dream of partnership, even as I write this, YouTube is opening the partner program up on a trial basis, letting anyone monetize their videos. Maybe that's the way it should have been from the very beginning.
But that still leaves us (more importantly: me) in an empty place. I thought YouTube was the answer. I thought is was the venue I needed, the repository I craved, and the source of community that I desired. Maybe it was never any of those things. Maybe I'm foolish to even be looking for something that fits the bill.
But in respect to my timeline, I'm right back where I started. It's not called Wacky Movies, but it's my personal website. Point of fact, actually, right before my partnership app was approved, I was planning on putting all of my attention on horbawrong.com anyways. My little way of saying "screw you, YouTube". Maybe that's what I should have done all along.
I've got a lot of questions and even more theories, but if there's one thing I know without a doubt, it's that YouTube is not the answer.
Stay creative, kiddos.
The anguished musings of a jack-of-all trades creative professional based out of Longwood, Florida. Find out more about him here. You know, if that's your 'thing'.
Most of my production music is original but if I need something extra-special, I usually get it from AudioNautix.com: