Youtubers And How They Influence You
Who are the key influencers of the youth?
Who are teens listening to nowadays?
Who are the youngsters spending hours binge watching? YouTubers.
Being a YouTuber has transformed from basic hobby of high schoolers, into serious career choice, so not all that surprising that many people now want to be YouTubers, instead of having regular jobs; and can you blame them? Being a YouTuber looks like the easiest and most fun job there is to have: sitting infront of a camera, chatting on about how much you hate highschool and getting paid thousands, for that? Who wouldn’t want that? Not to forget, the amount of power that comes with it: the ability to influence a lot of people.
Too few people understand how influential youtubers actually are, in our society. These kids have this generation by it’s neck: They decide what’s in and what’s out, what we should like and what we shouldn’t.
So, why we listen to them? Because we like them. Why, – what’s so special about them, you ask? Because, we identify with them, we see ourselves in their personalities and relate to their ‘storytime’ videos. We wish that we knew them personally, because we believe that the personality that they portray on the web is a reflection of who they actually are, but is this really the case. Just like we do, YouTubers act according to who they are around, and how they feel, but because we hold them to such high standards, as soon as their carefully crafted shell cracks, or they’re not as happy and positive, (like we’re used to), we immediately condemn them: “fame has changed them.” Potentially why many mainstream YouTubers decide not to spread awareness on important social, or political issues, because they want to be liked by everyone. Considering how much influence they have I feel like they should talk about the issues that actually effect us, (at least from time to time), instead of trying to sell us company sponsored flat irons.
You could say, certain YouTubers have the same, or even more, influence on us than main stream celebrities do, and they know exactly how to profit off it: overpriced merchandise, tours, music, and of course, the views. To some, buying a $80 hoodie with the face of a 16-year old teen on it may seem ridiculous, but others will blindly buy whatever these people put out there; no matter how stupid it is. These YouTubers know that. They know exactly that this portion of their viewers will always exist, and will always put money into their pockets. There’s even a term made for these kind of fans: “stans.”
Stans are those fans that would literally do anything for their idols, and by anything we mean: absolutely anything. Whilst some YouTubers only use them to make money, others take it further: YouTubers that sexualy exploit their fans. We’ve seen this happen several times throughout 2015, with YouTubers like Veeoneeye, Sam Pepper and Alex Day using their celebrity status and adulation, to have sex or rape their young viewers.**
These incidents cracked the spotless image of the oh so happy YouTube community and people started becoming more aware of the power that – as public figures – they hold over their audience. Unfortunately, the stans completely dismissed this, and continued to stand behind their idols. Standing behind a rapist seems not only moraly wrong, but also completely stupid to a sane mind, but these overzealous fans legit stuck to these people, telling them to “ignore the haters” and “stay strong” because, they will “get through it.”
Knowing that these people have such a strong influence on our youth, that they have developed some what of a cultish following, is something to be taken seriously, because let’s not forget that not all YouTubers are innocent beauty vloggers, with no bad intentions.
After that video was posted several women stepped foward and shared their stories of being sexualy harassed by theÂ youtube.Â Source
Veeoneeye / Jason Viohni
A few days after the release of the ‘Sam Pepper doesn’t know the word no’ video, 16-year old Ania Magliano-Wright uploaded a video accusing the youtuber veeoneeye of trying to get her drunk in order to sleep with her eventhough she was below the age of consent.
Shortly after this Veeoneeye posted an apology video stating that he wanst going to deny the allegations made against him.
Source 1, Source 2
The 26-year old youtuber Alex day posted a post on tumblr in which he confessed being manipulative toward women and may have proceeded when a girl didn’t say ‘yes’ nor ‘no’.Â Source