This week on the Reel Web we are going to take a look at Youtube users' complaints regarding the alleged loss of active subscribers, due to Youtube's "spring cleaning" of inactive accounts. We will also discuss the FCC, and their consideration of adding online "channels" like Youtube and Hulu to their definition of channels as applied to TV networks. Finally, we will take a look at Philip DeFranco and his intention to start his own Youtube network.
Youtube Angers Some Users in Removal of Inactive accounts
As many of you know, Youtube has recently removed accounts that have been inactive for a long enough time in an attempt to clean up the statistics on views and subscriber rates. While most of us would agree that this is a good thing, several users have complained that they have lost views and active subscribers in the process. Youtube has released a statement refuting these accusations, saying that they have no knowledge of any lost active users or subscribers.
For those who are claiming that videos are not appearing in their subscription box, Youtube has pointed out that they have recently added a new feature in the home feed. This feature can either show everything that an individual user is subscribed to, or just featured videos. If you seem to be missing some videos from channels that you are subscribed to, you may want to make sure that the proper option is checked in the home feed.
Youtube has finished removing all inactive accounts, and while people may notice a drop in subscribers in the short term, the numbers should plateau and flatten out within the next few days.
Youtube's statement can be found here.
The FCC Considers Redefining Online Channels To Fit With Their Definition For TV Networks
Last week the New York Times published an article discussing the possibility of the FCC redefining online channels on sites like Youtube and Hulu to fit with their policies regarding TV networks. For most websites the term "channel" simply means an account or profile where each of us loads video content. The same term with regards to TV, however, has a slightly different definition with different implications in terms of policy. This may be an extremely good thing, in that if these online channels are redefined by the FCC, they may be granted more rights and privileges. For example, if Youtube or Hulu go to content providers and ask to post their content on their respective websites, those content providers may not be able to refuse on legal grounds anymore. This development may launch the online video movement forward a great deal, but for the moment we will have to wait and see. We will keep you updated on any further developments in this area.
Philip DeFranco and Youtube Networks
Youtube boasts many thousands of individual users, but it also plays host to a great number of collaborative networks which work together and share their profits with each other. Recently, however, Philip DeFranco has said that many of these networks have unfavorable contracts with their individual contributors. These unfair contracts have resulted in a great deal of discontent from contributors, who feel under appreciated by their respective networks. DeFranco has put forward a proposal to counteract these kinds of one-sided contracts, by starting his own network. This network would be for the sole purpose of supporting Youtubers and protecting them from predatory contracts that hurt contributors more than they help. The network will do this by finding creators, artists, musicians, etc. and giving them exposure to build up their respective channels. The network itself would get revenue from that exposure and, theoretically, everyone would benefit. It sounds like a pretty great deal, but it remains to be seen if anything comes of it. We will keep you updated on any further developments.
QUESTION: What ideas do you have that could help "save YouTube?"
View The Full Video Transcript:
This week on the Reel Web we take a look at all the drama surrounding YouTube and all the subscribers that are being lost and we’ll also talk about how the FCC wants to redefine channels and some of the implications that will have for online video and a few other things as well. So that’s all coming up this week on the Reel Web.
Hey guys, my name is Tim Schmoyer and welcome to another week of the Reel Web where every week we just highlight for you guys some of the online video news from the week before and this week it would be pretty hard not to talk about all the drama and things surrounding YouTube this past week. As most of us know they have been going back and removing a lot of inactive YouTube accounts and just been kind of dead just to kind of clean up some of the statistics surrounding views and surrounding the subscriber rates and all that kind of thing. And it’s a really good thing that they’re doing but a lot of people have been coming up and just complaining and ranting about how they’re losing active subscribers and how YouTube is just screwing the whole thing up and is just destroying the community and murdering YouTubers. It’s just been like – I’m not really a drama person so I’m not really going to get into this, but YouTube did come out and say as far as we can tell, there has not been one single instance of us removing or unsubscribing someone from any channel who is an active user on YouTube.
The people who are saying they are not seeing some of the video content come through their subscription box that they say they subscriber to, YouTube points out hey we actually just changed a little bit ago and now in your home feed we can show either everything that you subscribed to or just the featured stuff. And if you have it set to just show the featured stuff you might miss some of the other things, so maybe that’s what people are thinking of when they’re saying we’re not seeing all of our video content come through for the stuff we subscribe to.
But either way, YouTube has completed removing subscribers and inactive accounts here on YouTube. And so while everyone – especially people who have had accounts on YouTube and been active YouTubers for a long time, they probably have lost the most number of subscribers, that’s all done and the numbers should kind of plateau and flatten out here in the next couple days in our analytics.
Personally, I’m like, why do people think YouTube is setting out to destroy itself. That just seems like a counter-intuitive argument, like how could it benefit YouTube at all for them to come out and just totally destroy this place? I don’t get why people would say that but YouTube, they said they’re on top of things, everything is fine, we don’t know what people are complaining about but everything looks fine on our end.
Last week the New York Times put out there some interesting talks surrounding the whole notion of channels as we know it here on YouTube. Channels is like an account or profile where each of us loads our video content. But on TV and television and networks it has a different meaning and the FCC is considering with all this other, like with YouTube and Hulu that are using “channels”, maybe we should redefine it to include those people and those website as well. The implications of this however could be huge because if YouTube and Hulu and other web properties are now considered channels, as far as I understand it, legally if they go to a content provider or another network and say, hey we want your stuff on our website, legally I don’t think they can say no we don’t want you to have our content. We don’t want this stuff to be stream-able online and online video. So it will be interesting to see how this plays out. It could definitely catapult the whole online video movement forward very, very rapidly. But maybe too rapidly as well as things already are just kind of very new where we’re just trying to figure it out. So we’ll see what happens here. We’ll keep you guys up-to-date but know that is a discussion that is taking place.
And finally I wanted to talk about something interesting that Philip DeFranco is talking about. You know there’s all these different networks on YouTube that all these collaborative channels that support each other and share revenue and they do all these different things together. But Philip DeFranco says that a lot of these networks are just basically just screwing their creators and the people who have signed contracts they want to get out of them but they can’t and they feel like they’re just being ripped off and there’s just, again, more drama. But essentially what Philip DeFranco is saying is in an article that was on CNN and reported in a couple other places as well is that he wants to start his own network that everyone benefits, that actually supports YouTubers and doesn’t screw YouTubers over. And the concept as far as I understand it is that he wants to find artists and creators, whether it’s musicians or painters or people who draw really well. And we want to find people who make a product that we can sell. So we wants to feature you on one of our channels and give you a lot of exposure, a lot of publicity, help you build up your channel that way it can be sustainable for you long term, but in the meantime like if we make a video of you say drawing a sketch and then we take that sketch and we want to sell it and you get the exposure, we get some revenue and I think that’s my understanding of it anyway of how it’s going to work. So it’s interesting and it sounds like it could be a fairly balanced, good solution for everyone involved. So I’d love to know what you guys think about that. Comment below and how that might “Save YouTube” as far as all the drama that’s been happening. That’s his approach to maybe how we can build up the community and people and networks and stuff. So if you have a different approach I’d love to hear about it.
For our Creator’s Tip video on Thursday, we have our final interview with Nathan Engels of WeUseCoupons. We’re going to talk with him about ways that bloggers can effectively use online video on their websites. So if you’re not already subscribed to our channel, we’d love for you to join us and click right there, that button above this video here on YouTube and we’d love to have you join us and I will see you later. Thanks! Bye.