YouTube star Ajey Nagar, a.k.a. CarryMinati, had uploaded a roast video in response to popular TikToker Amir Siddiqui's IGTV video that made several accusations against YouTubers.
Don't get me wrong here.
With 53K subscribers, 10 million-plus organic views and five viral films on my YouTube channel, I guess I have got some credentials to talk a bit about this topic.
My dear fellow YouTubers, here is a small piece of advice from someone who has been associated with brands for quite some time now.
Do not underestimate the potential of a new platform, which has taken the world by storm, and has succeeded in turning content consuming users into active content creators.
The way I see it, this is just a case of history repeating itself. If you remember, not so long ago, TV bigwigs found it difficult to, first, predict and, later, accept the advent of digital video platforms.
And many years before that, some cinema guys refused to look beyond the magic of a huge silver screen to give due respect to a small portable device that we all call TV. So, in a way, cinema barons initially treated TV folks the way the latter treated the TVFs and AIBs of the world.
While we are talking about that, it’s important to understand why each medium/platform worked. Cinema worked due to its larger-than-life visual appeal, TV due to its portability, and YouTube because it lets people create, as well as consume, content endlessly.
Now, the question arises why TikTok will work? The answer is, because it has taken content creation to just another level. Its easy-to-use interface and features lets users to do crazy fun stuff, without worrying about any complex post-production hassles.
As a platform, it truly democratises creativity and makes everyone believe they can quickly create something very interesting.
And this influx of unbridled creativity can sometimes lead to the creation of cringe-worthy stuff. It’s not something unexpected when you put power into the hands of people, and let them have fun with it.
Having said that, let’s not forget that one man's cringe is another man's cool.
With CarryMinati's roast, YouTubers may have won the battle, but with the current attitude, I am afraid they might lose the war. While the roast was a display of clout by natives of an already established platform, things can change very quickly.
Dissing some cringe-worthy content is cool, but not realising the potential of a hugely successful platform is not the right thing to do.
A better idea would be to adapt, or collaborate, to create interesting stuff. But from what I have seen in the past, every new platform gives birth to a new set of creators, who know how to leverage it the best.
P.S. - It’s not wise to underestimate the power of a spirited crowd, however cringe-worthy they may appear. Especially when they are being wooed by the big brands.
(The author is a creative director at Eunoia, a Dentsu Aegis Network agency and is also the founder of a YouTube channel called Tales N’ Talkies. The views expressed in this article are personal.)