“Restoration of a rare vintage WW2 military watch .”
I watched a 20 minute watch restoration video with zero music or talking. At dinner. With my parents.
All you could hear was the intermittent scraping of knives on ceramic plates and the occasional “Wow!” from me or my Mom.
It was absolutely fascinating, tantalizing, and satisfying.
As we watched, I had one overpowering thought..
“We’d never be able to watch this on primetime television.”
That thought led to another thought..
“Youtube, and the creator economy at large, has dramatically improved our options for at-home viewing.”
That thought led to one final thought..
“People at big media companies have no fucking idea what their audience actually wants, and a bunch of bald guys on Youtube fixing watches with no background music are mopping the floor with them.”
The above video has 13,000,000 views. That is absolutely ridiculous that millions of people wanted to watch this boring ass 20-minute video with no talking or background music.
Media Companies Are Losing Millennials
“Dad,” I paused for a moment.
“My generation just wants to watch a calm, measured conversation about things, not some ridiculous TV show host shouting over their guest every 4 seconds.”
My Dad asked me if I liked Tucker Carlson. “No,” I said.
“Why?” my Dad asked.
“Because I think he’s a jerk,” I replied, confident my parents could take my honesty (they could).
Then I told him about how, as a viewer, I’m sick of TV show hosts on channels like Fox and CNN aggressively talking over their guests. I’d much prefer a long-form podcast where the host has some form of self control ala Russel Brand or, hell, Joe Rogan.
At dinner my parents and I were discussing the differences between my generation and theirs. “Would your generation have stormed the beaches at D-DAY?”
I mean, it’s a hell of a question that’s impossible to know. The media sure loves to make my generation look like a bunch of entitled wimps who only care about participation trophies. I asked my Dad the common question “Who raised us, though?”
My generation is just sick of the lying and fear-mongering.
According to a report on Rev.com, “Millennials still watch traditional TV, but numbers are low compared to baby boomers and Gen X.”
No shit. I don’t want to watch Tucker Carlson spew venom from his mouth for an hour, I want to watch some dude restore an old watch, or learn about ASMR studios in Japan from ASMR Twix.
I watch an ungodly amount of Youtube every day. I listen when I’m driving, in the shower, playing video games, or having lunch. I’m always watching some video about investing, bitcoin, the NBA, or pop culture. Always.
This Is What Happens When You Give Everybody The Power To Create Something
TV stations used to hold a lot of power. Before platforms like Youtube, there was no way for the average Joe to create and distribute their content. Now anybody with a camera and editing software can film themselves restoring old PS1’s and make boatloads of money.
This begs the question..
What is quality content?
Is it what we’ve been reading and watching from companies like Fox and CNN?
Or is it, like, the videos of some bald guy fixing watches online? It’s a fascinating question to think about.
The Audience Gets To Decide Now
The audience gets to decide what the best content is. Content consumption now resembles more of a free-market than an Oligarchy, and the free market is kicking the Oligarchy’s ass.
A recent article on Forbes written by Sheena Scott reads:
“This younger generation turning away from traditional TV are part of a growing proportion of the U.K. population (more than a million) who do not watch broadcast TV or have a television set. The reasons behind this is manifold: 43% claim they are not interested in TV programs, 13% are subscribed to an SVoD, such as Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, and do not watch their programs on a TV set, and 12% watch other online TV or video using other devices, while 16% do not want to pay the TV license.”
Apparently there’s a shift happening in the U.K. where younger viewers aren’t as interested in TV programs anymore.
Hell, my Mom sits on the couch and watches pimple popping videos instead of whatever’s on TV every night. My Dad now knows how to react to messages inside Facebook’s Messenger app.
What a time to be alive.
I watched Jake Paul knock out Ben Askren the other night. The “Main Event” started at 9 PM and for the first — I shit you not — two and a half hours, there was only one fight broadcasted.
The rest of the program was dedicated to a slap match refereed by Ric Flair, Snoop Dogg smoking joints, and various elderly rappers performing next to scantily clad women.
There was like two hours of music in this program, and by the time midnight rolled around I thought of jumping out of my friend’s second story window to escape into the night.
But the very existence of an event like this proves my point:
Jake Paul, a guy who got famous on Youtube, Main Event-ed a card that had guest appearances from Diplo, Ric Flair, Snoop Dogg, Justin Bieber, Ice Cube, and Too Short.
I’ll say it again: What a time to be alive.
At the end of the day, audiences get to decide what they want to see. The younger generations increasingly don’t care about what’s on TV. Give us the restoration videos made by old farts.
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