When YouTube first started in 2005, it was a way for users to share their home videos with the rest of the world. You could browse YouTube for interesting videos, cat videos, or videos of a little kid biting another kid’s finger. YouTube was a platform for enjoyment and sharing, but not a business platform. Since then, technology has changed, the internet has changed, and YouTube has changed with it.
Today, YouTube has turned into an integral part of the internet. While you can still use the website to share your personal videos, the site has also become a place for large scale entertainment production. YouTube channels, which users can subscribe to, are able to make money off of advertisements. Advertisements often show before you watch a YouTube video, or can come in the form of product placement within a video. Advertisements allow creators to make a great deal of money. Larger content creators are able to make YouTube videos for a living, which allows their channels to create higher quality content at a faster rate. This has led to a site that has many opportunities for quality entertainment. There are channels for everyone, with many channels in genres such as comedy, news, entertainment, or sports. But the genre that is perhaps the most popular and interesting is gaming.
Gamers flock to YouTube for entertainment, news, tips, or any kind of videos regarding their favorite video games. This makes gaming videos on YouTube potentially a very profitable business. Felix Kjelberg, the man behind YouTube’s most subscribed to channel, PewDiePie, makes videos of himself playing and reacting to various games. His audience loves his funny and entertaining style. PewDiePie currently has over 40 million subscribers and over 10 billion views on his videos. In 2014, it was reported that he made over seven million dollars.
But it’s not just PewDiePie who has the eyes of gamers across the world. There are hundreds of gaming channels with over a million subscribers. Here is a list of the top 100 most popular gaming channels. All of these channels generate enough money to make a living off of YouTube. Some of these channels are run by individuals, such as PewDiePie or KSI. But others are run by large groups of people, such as IGN, Machinima, and Rooster Teeth.
Recently, online gaming entertainment has been using a new way to entertain fans, aside from traditional videos on YouTube. Twitch.tv is a website where creators can livestream themselves playing videogames. Twitch creators, who often overlap with YouTube, stream for hours. Viewers enjoy the casual, genuine feel of a live stream. They are also able to interact in real time by commenting on the stream. Twitch has been popular among gamers for years, but in 2014, the company caught worldwide attention when Amazon bought it for 970 million dollars.
YouTube has recognized the success and popularity of Twitch’s live stream format and has recently introduced YouTube Gaming. This service is intended to be a direct competitor to Twitch. Because most streamers are also YouTube creators, it would theoretically be more convenient to live stream and post videos in the same place. It will be interesting to see if YouTube will be able to lure Twitch streamers to their new service.
Video game developers and publishers have noticed the success and popularity of personalities on YouTube. Companies from other entertainment sectors, such as music or movies, often object to YouTube videos due to copyright. This denies the user the ability to monetize their videos. Video game companies do have the option to claim gaming videos on YouTube; however, they recognize that when a popular YouTuber plays their game, they are getting free advertisement. YouTube gaming trends have have a very significant impact on gaming sales, because if an audience is watching their favorite personality play a game, they will want to purchase it. This relationship benefits developers, because of the advertisement; creators, because of their ability to monetize their videos; and gamers, who get free online entertainment.
The rise of gaming on YouTube has shown how entertainment has changed in recent years. Previously, if you were interested in gaming, there were not many options on TV. Now, people can watch videos catered to their interests easily and for free. And these interests do not have to be gaming. Whether it be gaming, sports, cooking, fashion, makeup, movies, or anything else, there are videos for you. Entertainment is changing, and consumers are continually benefiting from the nearly unlimited supply of free, easily accessible videos.
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