I’ve kept my mouth shut for a while but I’m done. I’ve had to say something. Even though I’m nobody and you won’t care even slightly about what I’m saying. In fact I strongly doubt anybody from YouTube will even read it.
Your most recent changes to the site and how you run things have nearly completely destroyed the connection between my audience and myself. I pretty much have no desire to upload videos anymore because it is now pointlessly difficult to reply to new comments - the main reason I make videos in the first place.
I signed up to YouTube in October of 2009 as a way to vent pent-up bass yearnings in my bedroom. I thought it could be cool because I had seen loads of people on there doing bass covers of songs I liked, so I thought “why not join in?”
Up until the last year, I’ve loved my YouTubing experience. I’ve grown what I might even allow myself to call a “fanbase”! Something I never thought that I could personally have on my own. I’ve shared my music, my opinions on matters relating to music, and of course performances playing along with other people’s music. I had a little growing community even! It was a small community, but I loved it. I still love it and I want it back the way it was.
By forcing me (and all the other YouTubers out there… anyone with a YouTube account actually) to start up and actively use a Google+ account, you have immediately alienated a lot of people. I don’t want to use Google+! But to keep in contact with my audience, I have been forced to. My friends are being held at ransom on the internet. I read the email explaining the changes and underneath all the waffle, all I could really take from it all was a Liam Neeson-esque “if you ever want to speak to your fans again, you better log in and check your Google+ notifications” ‘Taken’ type situation.
It’s horrible and unfair.
Of course, the new changes won’t really bother the big YouTubers. Or, at least, not as much. And I’m not having a go! It’s not their fault that they’re more popular than myself - many of the big YouTubers get so many comments that it’s more understood by the audience that it’s difficult for them reply to a lot of comments. But me? I have less than 5000 subscribers (amazing, greatly appreciated, but small compared to the big guys) and only get around 20 comments a week. Or, at least, I used to… I don’t know what I get anymore. I checked my inbox on YouTube every day and replied to nearly everything I got. Of course I ignored pointless trolling comments, but everything else usually got a reply. Now I probably look like a douchebag for not replying to comments, so, thanks for that as well.
This might not be the most eloquent of letters but I am just kind of writing this off-the-cuff. And I’m incredibly mad.
I don’t understand why you people at YouTube cannot adopt the philosophy “if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it”. I’ve tolerated the changes you have made up to this point. ‘Tolerated’ being the key word there. I genuinely believe that the site has gotten steadily worse since 2010, and these Google+ oriented changes are the last straw.
Unfortunately though, you guys don’t actually care about the small-time YouTubers like myself. You’d never admit it, but we all know. All us small-time guys know. It’s pretty obvious. We don’t earn you any money so we’re expendable.
I’ve made good friends through YouTube, I’ve gained a following and gotten a bit of a name for myself. I could argue that it was even seeming to snowball into something bigger! But you’ve put a big giant boot in front of it and stopped it dead in its tracks. In all honestly I feel a bit choked by YouTube.
But it doesn’t matter how I feel about this at all, right?
Cos YouTube doesn’t care about us little guys.
Thanks for completely spoiling a major part of my recent life.
BedroomBassist / Nick Latham