July 23-25 Anaheim, CA: At this year’s VidCon super-star creators of online Vlogs, Vines and videos got together with 20,000 wildly enthusiastic fans to celebrate the expanding world of online videos. Some say it’s the death of TV. Others are hesitant to guess at what it presages. Even VidCon’s co-founders John and Hank Green don’t want to hazard a guess.
“I am so bad at predicting the future,” says John. “I once told my brother not to buy HD cameras because no one would ever watch YouTube in widescreen. So I have no idea. We are completely overwhelmed by trying to understand the present.”
But that may be a bit, well, disingenuous. It’s pretty clear that kids love video and are brave about making videos (300 are loaded on to YouTube every minute) that tackle global issues, adolescent angst and artistic visions. And that’s changing the nature of media both made and viewed.
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Hillel Scheinfeld, COO of online video company Viewbix, who was on hand for the event, says, “YouTube realizes that it is the network of the future for a generation of content creators. They are evolving from a pure viewing platform into and complete solution. Shoot, edit, distribute. Even if Facebook or Snapchat is bigger for first views,” he adds, “no platform even comes close to second views or on demand views.
“My two big takeaways from the show,” he says, ” are that video’s ad format must change, and new technology will be a huge part of the future of video, specifically technology that promotes viewer engagement.”
Quick Quiz: Do you know these YouTube Super-Stars?
Answer: A comedy duo with almost 21 million subscribers.
Heard of KingBach?
That’s Andrew Bachelor, a comic with 13.1M followers and over 4.5 billion loops on Vine.
Are You Into “My Drunk Kitchen”?
That’s Hannah Hart’s regular YouTube show; her 6 minute Freaky Tzatziki episode has garnered almost 200,000 views.