Main cultural commentary creators from YouTube and TikTok mentioned the modifications and challenges they’ve confronted because the begin of the COVID-19 pandemic at a VidCon panel on Thursday.
YouTubers Jarvis Johnson, Eddy Burback and Jenny Nicholson joined TikToker Michael (HePetty) and former YouTuber Lindsay Ellis in a panel moderated by journalist Mara Schiavocampo. The group mentioned evolving viewers habits, content material conception, psychological well being and recommendation for aspiring creators.
With everybody caught at house at the beginning of the pandemic, there was nothing to do however watch content material and join through telephone screens. Ellis, who left YouTube final December, mentioned it made social media extra profitable – however made audiences extra poisonous.
“Nobody had something to do and everybody was simply trapped in entrance of their social media,” she mentioned throughout the panel. “So I believe the viewers’s reactions bought extra emotional or extra intense.”
Ellis additionally clarified that she wasn’t “chased away” from social media throughout this time, alluding to the controversy surrounding her exit from YouTube. Fairly, she was uninterested in standing as much as the fixed abuse on-line, which she mentioned “by no means stops” even after 14 years as a creator, and that she ran out of issues to say.
“I felt like there have been individuals doing extra fascinating issues than me, and I form of had my time in that individual area of interest within the highlight,” she mentioned, later saying, “After that [doing] one thing so lengthy that I form of felt like I wanted to know when to cease.
The lively YouTubers on the panel mentioned the completely different approaches to reporting popular culture of their YouTube movies. Nicholson famous a surge in longer-form nostalgic content material amid the pandemic, a development she’s contributed to along with her viral 2.5-hour present Vampire Diaries Video. In the meantime, Burback mentioned he’s began making movies he needed to make as a substitute of creating movies he feels he must be making, pointing to a just lately uploaded piece that he simply watched illness 5 days in a row. He mentioned that because the pandemic ends, individuals appear to be in search of content material that feels extra genuine to a creator’s character.
Nonetheless, the pandemic made creation tough, and Burback mentioned it was tough to conceive movies whereas the world was witnessing one thing so horrifying.
“Folks lose relations and I don’t wish to say, ‘Have a look at this factor on YouTube that’s occurring.’ It doesn’t appear to matter that a lot,” he mentioned.
Johnson mentioned the consequences of the pandemic have been extra inside: “After I diminished publicity to new stimuli, it form of felt like I used to be doing the identical factor on daily basis. I felt like I used to be in Groundhog Day and that actually hampered my creativity.”
He believes different creators have additionally felt this stress throughout the pandemic, and he mentioned it was “exhausting” to create content material when the pandemic began. Now, Johnson encourages aspiring creators to strike a stability. For his half, he mentioned he’s made strides over the previous yr to find time for buddies, sports activities and different actions to keep away from burnout and discover a higher routine.
“I’m a really hyper-focused man,” he mentioned. “I’m engaged on a video and it’s like all my self-care goes out the window and that’s not okay. That isn’t sustainable.”
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