Asher Ackman, staff writer
YouTube is one of the largest video sharing networks in the world. It serves as a social network and, for some, can become a career.
Take PewDiePie and Jenna Marbles, who have become familiar names to our generation. They started by simply creating and posting a few videos on their page and eventually their subscribers grew.
“YouTubers,” the common name for people who post videos onto the website, tend to have themes to their channels. Popular, among them, are health and beauty, comedy, music and the “vlog.”
People from all over the world use YouTube and some Mason students are also included in those ranks.
Kasi Bumgarner, a senior Film and Video Studies major, is one of them. She has over 1,800 subscribers and produces videos primarily focusing on hair and other beauty tips.
“When I first started watching beauty and fashion videos, more specifically hair tutorials on YouTube, I realized there weren’t too many creators who made videos to help girls manage their curly hair,” Bumgarner said. “Although I was still learning a lot about working with my natural texture, I thought that sharing my personal experience and tips might help someone out. So then I decided to turn on my camera one day and put myself out there and the rest is history!”
Chaney Steineke, an Integrative Studies major, started producing content for YouTube about a year ago. She has over 4,000 subscribers.
“I mostly make beauty videos (hair, makeup, etc),” Steineke said. “But I also add in other videos that I find appealing (singing, question & answer, etc).”
Several YouTubers, Bumgarner included, do not stick to one topic strictly. Bumgarner, for example, also discusses fashion and hopes to start making videos discussing advice and lifestyle.
YouTube is likely so well received because there is little restriction on what kind of content someone can create.
“To me,” Bumgarner says, “YouTube is one of the most amazing and open places in the world.”
“I think YouTube is one of the best ways to express creativity, learn, and meet people with the same interests as you. Although I enjoy other forms of social media, I find YouTube to be the best one for my interest in beauty,” Steineke said.
Wesley Brown, a Spanish major, echoes this sentiment. He uses the website to watch a variety of content such as cartoons, anime and instructional videos.
As Bumgarner states, “Whatever you’re passionate about, there are other people you can connect with over that through the content uploaded to YouTube.”
Brown agrees. YouTube is becoming a more mainstream form of entertainment and is becoming more recognized as a legitimate entertainment site and business. According to Mashable, users watch a total of four billion hours of video each month.
“It’s like you can literally find anything there that you want to. I know a lot of my friends go on there a lot. I don’t think I know a single person that doesn’t frequent YouTube,” Brown said.
If you are thinking about starting a channel, Bumgarner and Steineke recommend it.
“The most important thing you can do for yourself if you’re interested in any aspect of film and video production is to get out there and just do it,” Bumgarner said. “Your first few tries will probably be terrible and you’ll make mistakes, but you’ll learn from them and get better as you go. Practice really does make perfect, or at least pretty close!”