Let’s paint you a picture. YouTubers, by definition, generally start out by setting up a camera in their bedroom, talking to it, doing a bit of editing and throwing it up on YouTube for the world to see. It’s a completely free process and YouTubers are largely dependent on us and our interaction in order for their careers to take off and cause them any kind of success. Yet many YouTubers have reached celeb status and a lot of our faves are raking in some serious dough.
And, with some recent income revelations making the rounds on the interwebz, it’s got us wondering if, at the end of the day, YouTubers are actually earning way too much for what they’re doing.
Yep, turns out Zoella earns a stonking load of cash!
Really, that isn’t exactly news to us. We sort of already figured that, considering she has millions of subscribers across her two YouTube channels, two best selling books and a pretty successful beauty range. To top it all off, there’s also the fact that she gets sponsorship for #AD videos and could earn potential thousands simply for making one tweet or posting a Snapchat if she so pleased — though we’ll admit we haven’t seen much of that from her.
Still, to hear that her recently filed financial accounts have pegged her as earning up to £50,000 a month is pretty blooming insane. For us, having that as an annual wage would be a bloody dream come true, to be honest. But, at 26, Zoe is already absolutely killing it.
We wonder if she ever just throws wads of cash into the air and then lies in it, because we would probably do that, lbr.
The thing is, though, we kind of wonder whether YouTubers should be making these big bucks, or not. If you look at it plainly, as a fashion and beauty vlogger Zoe could be said to be, at the heart of it, showing us all the bits and bobs she bought and making money by spending it in the first place. In those simple terms, it sort of sounds ridiculous that she should be earning so much.
What’s more, that is some serious cash for what started as a girl sat in her bedroom, talking to her camera. The process of then uploading it to YouTube was a free one, and yet she now gets paid to do so, even though anyone could upload to the platform or tune in when they fancy. In turn, YouTube would live on without the need for paying ridiculous amounts to young adults showing off all the lovely, sparkly things they’ve bought.
That said, the big money clearly comes from sponsorship and other business ventures YouTubers have decidedly taken, be that by publishing a book (so, every YouTuber ever basically), clothing and beauty lines and even busting out their acting skillz for movies and documentaries. Their income isn’t just from ad revenue and the amount of views their channels receive. In fact, that’s probably a minuscule chunk.
In this sense, then, perhaps their earnings actually seem deserving. Sure, they’re on a pretty high scale, but when you’re writing best selling books and putting a lot of hard work, sweat and tears into producing lines you can be proud of, and on top of all that, making timely content that has to impress hundreds of thousands to millions of people… Well, it’s pretty intimidating — we’re actually sweating just thinking about it.
What’s more, are we not those individuals out there buying and making a success out of all these YouTube ventures? We clearly like the books they write and the other various products they bring out for us consumers to feast on. If we didn’t trust that it was as amazing as our faves say it is, we wouldn’t go for it, would we?
And that’s another thing: we trust the YouTubers. They’re our idols, our honorary older siblings, or just a really fab friend. In some instances, they’ve been known to guide some of us through some hella dark times, so we can’t really be discrediting them for ‘selling out’ with all this extra stuff on top of their hugely successful YouTube careers. Because we love them and support them, therefore it sort of feels like a team effort in helping #TeamInternet become as good as it can be.
So putting it in such simple terms as simply uploading a video to the internet is kind of unfair. Our faves clearly have something that draws us to them and makes us want to keep watching and, subsequently, go out and buy and support what they’re doing. Also, lbr, not everyone has what it takes to make such successful careers out of the video platform. Many people try and fail daily to become the next big thing on YouTube, but it’s definitely not that simple.
Obviously they’re all pretty bloody beautiful people, but we aren’t going to be so shallow as to say that’s all they’ve got. They’re charismatic and entertaining, funny and kind. They’re people that we feel we can relate to and, as we said before, people we can trust. So they aren’t going to fob us off with something naff just for the sake of bringing in some extra quid. Maybe that’s naive, but we don’t think so, anyway.
Tbh, if footballers can get paid such an extortionate amount just for kicking a ball around on a patch of green, then why can’t someone who uploads funny videos to YouTube? At least they actually care about their fans, right?
But now it’s over to you. What do you think about the amount YouTubers earn? Tweet us @maximumpop and join in on the debate!