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Who are the highest paid YouTube personalities?

(SOCIAL MEDIA NEWS) These top YouTube personalities have cultivated their followers for years, creating engaging channels that users feel connected to in a personal way. And they’re rewarded for it in millions.

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rosanna pansino

Hey YouTube, what’s up?

Forbes just released a list of the highest paid YouTube personalities according to their annual salary.

Each channel rakes in at least five million dollars a year, so feel free to feel bad about yourself.Click To Tweet

But keep in mind that for the most part, overnight success is largely a myth. These YouTubers have been building a following for years, tapping into a market of trial and error. So, who made the list?

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Who’s who

7. Colleen Ballinger, comedian
$5 million/year

7. (Tie!) Rhett & Link, morning talk show hosts
$5M/year

6. German Garmendia, comedian/musician
$5.5M/year

6. (Tie!) Markiplier, gamer
$5.5M/year

5. Tyler Oakley, LGBTQ activist
$6M/year

5. (Tie!) Rosanna Pansino, baking geek
$6M/year

4. SMOSH, aka Anthony Padilla and Ian Hecox, sketch show comedians
$7M/year

3. Lilly Singh, rapper/comedian/dancer
$7.5M/year

2. Roman Atwood, prankster/stunts
$8M/year

1. PewDiePie, gamer
$15M/year

Network effect

So how are they making all this money? The top earners feature gamers, pranksters, and comedians. These are all pretty commonplace internet occupations. YouTube is rife with videos of stand-up meets baking meets nerd culture, but somehow these top earners have staked out a spot above the masses, earning millions of dollars a year.

Their popularity is due in part to the network effect, where one user’s product or service affects the value of that product to other people. Social networks are a prime example. When more users join, the sites become increasingly attractive to others.

As YouTube evolved, subscribing to channels became more commonplace. Instead of simply sharing videos or creating playlists of favorites, YouTube created the ability to subscribe. Users can follow channels like they would follow friends on other social media sites.

Like, comment, subscribe

This, in turn, leads to the bandwagon effect. When users can see there is already a large following for a channel, they are likelier to subscribe. Personal elements also influence viewers to subscribe.

Directly engaging viewers by asking them questions and telling them to like, comment, and subscribe to your videos make users feel like they are personally involved in the channel. Success isn’t just about having a viral video. These top YouTubers have cultivated their followers for years, creating engaging channels that users feel connected to in a personal way.

While being a YouTube star may seem lucrative, keep in mind that making millions is not the norm.

The success of your own channel should be measured by its followers and impact, not just the monetary value.

Make sure to engage your current followers and encourage viewers to interact with your videos and brand.

#YouTubeFame

Lindsay is an editor for The American Genius with a Communication Studies degree and English minor from Southwestern University. Lindsay is interested in social interactions across and through various media, particularly television, and will gladly hyper-analyze cartoons and comics with anyone, cats included.

Social Media

You’re tired of Twitter because you’re no longer their average demographic

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Twitter was once a gathering place for industry professionals, but if you’re finding yourself drifting away, you’re not alone – the average demographic has changed. A lot.

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Each major social media platform has a tendency to draw a particular demographic, giving each individual platform a distinct tinge or feel. However, research shows that the demographics of Twitter may make it the most unique and youthful social media platform yet.

Perhaps the most notable aspect that sets Twitter apart is its content generation. While Twitter has approximately 126 million daily users, only around 10 percent of those users tweet with any reliable frequency. Surprisingly, that 10 percent user base is responsible for curating around 80 percent of the content on Twitter, giving a shockingly small group of people control over the bulk of Twitter’s output.

Anyone who has spent a significant amount of time on Twitter probably won’t find this revelation entirely illuminating; after all, most of what you see on Twitter generally looks like a slightly different iteration of something that someone else said on Twitter. Even so, the significance of such a large percentage of Twitter’s content coming from such a small group cannot be discounted.

In another shake-up, Twitter users as a collective also tend to be younger than other social media users.

Again, you’ll usually see this openly reflected in both the tone and persuasion of the content posted there, but the objective youthfulness of Twitter does explain some of the criticism levied toward its users by other social media aficionados.

While these two main points seem relatively benign, not everyone agrees with Twitter’s eclectic nature. Twitter’s distinguishing factors have led some, to label it as a “collective hallucination” of a platform, meaning that its demographic data, content themes, and aggregate of information all combine to create a different picture of America than is actually correct; naturally, the democratic-leaning persuasion of Twitter doesn’t help correct this assumption.

But what sticks out to some publications as a pipe dream of a demographic is, in fact, fairly accurate to America’s example insofar as race and gender ratio is concerned — even though Twitter may not embody the politically diverse “melting pot” of America’s government or emulate its education statistics.

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Social Media

Big backlash after woman tries to shame McD worker for napping

(SOCIAL MEDIA) This might be my favorite story of the year – a woman calls out a napping employee, and the community rejects her tweet, then rallies behind the employee to help improve his life.

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mcdonald's employee shamed for napping

Social media originated as a form of communication to stay in touch with people that you don’t see every day. From there, it blossomed into a community of idea-sharing and a source for news.

As social media grew more popular, the dark side began to rear its ugly head and people began using it as a method of attacking people from behind their keyboards. So much of social media has become negative that it’s hard to want to stay active.

Such was the case when a woman in Fayette County, Georgia shared a photo of a McDonald’s worker asleep in the booth. She posted the photo to social media in haste, in an attempt to shame the McDonald’s location for not doing anything about the employee’s behavior.

What she didn’t realize was that the employee – Simon Childs – was homeless and was simply resting between shifts.

The 21-year old father recently fell into hard times after his mother passed away, and found himself without a residence, but with a job at McDonald’s. When he found out about what the woman posted, Childs was disappointed by her actions.

“It kind of hurt to see my picture up there, you know,” he told WSB in Atlanta. “I thought it was something negative and nobody would care about it.”

The woman’s photo received a lot of attention on social media, but not in the way that she had intended. Local community members near Childs learned of his story and rejected the shaming. They began donating items to help with his child. Others donated hotel rooms, while a local restauranteur loaned Childs his car.

The nameless woman who posted the photo reportedly claims that she didn’t intend to shame Childs, especially since the image was only posted to a private group. However, we all know that it only takes one screenshot to make something “private” known to the whole entire world.

This shows us a few timeless lessons: Nothing on social media or the Internet is private, karma works in mysterious ways, and never make assumptions about anyone as you never know what is going on in their world.

That’s my morals and values lesson for the day. Class dismissed.

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Snapchat shifts strategy to open their arms to competitors

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Snapchat opens some interesting doors after keeping the padlocked for years – will this new strategy solidify their status as a digital giant?

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There’s no denying the notable impact that Snapchat has had on the visual side of social media apps. From knock-off Snapchat-esque filters to more egregious rips such as the “Stories” feature, allusions to Snapchat are inherent in the bulk of social media platforms. Snapchat’s response is simple: to monetize these allusions via the Snapchat Story Kit.

The “Stories” feature has rapidly become a massive part of platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, with over a billion daily story users across these three services. Comparatively, Snapchat enjoys around 186 million daily story users, making it nearly impossible for the original story curator to compete.

Like many modern businesses, Snapchat’s initial response was to ignore the competition in a display of relentless, self-indulgent optimism. Now that such optimism has been dampened by cold, hard numbers, Snapchat is turning to another venue: sharing.

By sharing their “Stories” feature via a new developer suite — called the “Snapchat Story Kit” — Snapchat will be able to monetize its most ubiquitous aspect while maintaining some semblance of branding across any participating platforms.

In theory, the Snapchat Story Kit will allow app users to post their Snapchat stories to apps such as Tinder, Twitter, and so on; this will enable the same level of story interaction one would find within Snapchat or on Facebook without taking the focus away from Snapchat’s API.

Since any story posted via the Snapchat Story Kit will still go through Snapchat rather than a nonpartisan third-party app or program, this move will continue to emphasize Snapchat’s presence in the visual world.

There are a few possible downsides to this power-grab, not least of which is Facebook’s level of control at the time of this writing. Since Facebook already uses its own version of the “Stories” feature on all of its most-frequented apps, Snapchat has essentially missed out on some of the most powerful opportunities to monetize its features.

It’s also within the realm of reason to assume that Snapchat will require Snapchat Story Kit users to jump through additional hoops before they can use its features—a move that, similarly to the Bitmoji jump, may prove to be more annoying than hindering.

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