April 4, 2024

We're seeing this more and more

Recently Piers Morgan had YouTubers Nerdrotic and The Critical Drinker (a personal favorite) on his show to discuss Disney's recent parade of flop movies. It was a good discussion but my takeaway went in an entirely different direction, not involving Disney except peripherally .  Firstly, here's their discussion before I pivot away.  Notice there are two other guests to round out the panel debate but meh, who cares.

As I said, a good discussion, but not my point.  My observation is that more and more we are seeing (no offense intended) second tier YouTubers show up on more mainstream outlets.  Let me be clear, neither of those gentlemen are second tier in terms of content. I mean that they are not at the level of say a Joe Rogan or Jordan Peterson in terms of viewership.  Not yet at least.

Why are these people being elevated to mainstream status? Again, I am fans of both of these YouTubers, this is not meant as a slight at them. They are talented, educated, intelligent and well spoken. But why them, why not say Ben Affleck (whom I would be much less likely to watch on Piers Morgan's show)? I think I know the answer, or at least a few possible answers.

Firstly, I already answered it in part; who wants to watch Ben Affleck pontificate on anything? We have already seen him make a clown out of himself on Bill Maher's show. So there are ratings to consider. But then why not Ben Shapiro, who is clearly a top tier catch? Maybe it's because he is already a known commodity. Media is always looking for the next new thing, and when you have people like Nerdrotic and The Critical Drinker who can do just as good a job as guests, you are in the right (perceived) lane as mainstream media.  Furthermore, you can't just keep doing the same thing and expect to maintain ratings. If that was the case, TV shows would all be reruns, music artists  would only make one album, and Gone With The Wind and Wizard of Oz would be the only movies in theaters. New and different don't always work, but they do often enough to be absolutely 100% necessary.

Secondly, Nerdrotic and The Critical Drinker have become a bit more than just second tier. They have over a million and nearly two million subscribers respectively. These are not small players. The media in general is at a point where has to embrace these independent content producers because they are continually losing ground to the likes of YouTube.  As the saying goes, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Unfortunately I think much of the mainstream media, and I'm not talking about Piers Morgan here, have not understood the main lesson here.  The reason people are going to YouTubers, is the same reason they had started moving to Netflix; you are producing crap that people do not want to watch. The woke message hammering in movies and shows is not a winning formula. Ironically, this was the Piers Morgan Disney debate's topic in the above clip.  

Disney is still not getting the message it seems. 

As an aside, I've noticed this happening more on the right side of the political aisle than the left side.  That could be an observational bias since I watch very little left leaning content, it's hard to stomach for long. But the idea that it's predominantly a right sided phenomenon does make sense. The right has far fewer celebrities and therefore needs more 'celebrities' than does the left.  The right is more open to conversation from outside the echo chamber; we are not a lockstep thinking group. Therefore we need new perspectives, the left mostly does not.

If the left eventually comprehends all this, it will hopefully be too late to save their media hegemony.

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