Out of nowhere, watching videos online became one of the biggest activities in the Internet. Definitely it was not a fad – video streaming has become a habit similar to how teleseryes became integrated in our lifestyle. And if we’re talking about online videos here, there’s no other authority – it’s definitely Youtube.
You (and I) love Youtube
Youtube is revolutionary. Period. And it’s understandable why after 2005, video streaming just became an online habit. It’s just the social media package and more rolled in one URL. You can create content, add to favorites, comment, rate, share, respond, and even report – all in an AV format. And obviously, there’s a preference for videos versus text, which reflected by Youtube being the third top website in the whole planet, as opposed to Project Gutenberg which appears nowhere in the top one thousand (PG is a collection of free eBooks).
Why do we love Youtube? In line with the reasons of people why they contribute, Youtube is a hit because it addresses the basic social needs of people. First, people always look for the most convenient way to do things. Whether one just wants to express his/her views regarding the existence of Justin Bieber, or get the attention of media executives for a mainstream break, or look for tutorials on how to do layers in Photoshop, there is always the feeling of convenience if right after 5 minutes, you have what you needed.
Independent artists alert! =]
Second, there’s always the ‘need’ to be an influential person online, or in Youtube, an influential channel. To post videos that show how Domino’s Pizza bastardize the food that they serve or share Taylor Swift’s single because Youtube disabled all working links results to you being subscribed on Youtube and seen as an authority caring for customers and fans of these brands. All these boil down to answering the need to be more human – it’s definitely easier to relate to a video of kids playing with one another rather than reading it in a website.
Youtube (probably) loves you back
I personally like Youtube because it keeps on innovating all the time. Now you can cross-post/share videos that you prefer on Youtube on Facebook and Twitter. It also separates the liked videos from the favorite videos, plus you can also subscribe to the Youtube channel. You can create a playlist of your own from all the videos posted online just so you can group them for you and for other people with the same interests, and Youtube also recommends a list of videos based on your previously viewed ones. For video posters, there’s always an Insight tab, where you can check the stats of your videos.
A recent addition of Youtube to their services is the revamped Music page. Because Youtube has become associated with music plus they must have gained the insight that people check Youtube to watch MVs, they created a page that is so extensive that (1) the content is customized for every person and for every genre (say, all recommendations for me on the country genre are Taylor Swift songs) and (2) it also has a section for upcoming events near my location(John Mayer at SM MOA!).
Your Tube, Your Time
Time recently commented that our Youtube now might be different from the Youtube after five years. True enough, the first video posted on Youtube was a home video, but after five years, the two most viewed videos on Youtube are those of Bieber (click at your own risk) and Lady Gaga – commercial videos, to note. The matched copyrighted content and addition of a Music page just reinforce the fact that Youtube is getting more and more commercialized, but seems like we won’t have any problem in the near future – people will never return the control they got from social media, as our readings say.
Our own makings of a viral video
As people will never go back to pre-Youtube days, i.e., passively receiving content, Youtube remains to be one of the most effective social media touchpoints. Organizations should create and post meaningful and valuable AV content for their target communities. They will surely stumble upon it in one way or another – whether you promoted it, it was shared in those communities, or they’ll see it in their own time. More than just broadcasting yourself, it’s now broadcasting yourself to the people who matter.
Talking about people who matter, I’d like to end this post through a Youtube video. I might not be the target audience for this, but I can say that I advocate for literacy and I belong to the target community. =]