YouTube knows comedy
YouTube is transforming the platform for comedy and is redefining the creative capabilities for the hopeful comic.
Students may have heard of YouTube's Comedy Week that took place from May 19 to 25.
There are roughly 150 videos that are the product of the one-week-long event; although this was a proposed "live" event, the videos will forever remain viewable on YouTube.
A week worth of laughs and awkward moments, Comedy Week was star-studded with some very high-profile comedic names, and some not-so high profile ones.
Seth Rogen, Sarah Silverman, The Lonely Island, Adam Devine, Blake Anderson, Smosh, Jeff Ross, Skrillex and Andy Milonakis were all a part of Comedy Week. Also many YouTubers participated alongside these big names, such as Grace Helbig of DailyGrace, and Jake Hurwitz and Amir Blumenfeld of CollegeHumor.
There were even musical appearances by Garfunkel and Oats and Reggie Watts.
As demonstrated by the activities of the past week, YouTube has become a platform for comedic creativity that is unlike any other medium, and that is a great thing.
It allows literally anyone with a camera and internet access to try their hand at creative entertainment.
Even influential actors, musicians and comedians take to YouTube to continue their craft, and in some cases, like Bobby Lee, completely convert from television to YouTube exclusively.
If it were not for YouTube, a lot of comics would not see the light of day.
YouTube serves as a gateway to bigger projects, such as full-length movies or sometimes even comedy tours, like the mid-tour NoFilter Tour with Helbig.
With the big success YouTube's Comedy Week has seen, I would expect similar events to be held in the future and even advertised through other means of entertainment, such as television commercials or Pandora and Spotify ads.
Comedy Week might even set the trend for events to be hosted on YouTube.
However, with events with such high-profile celebrities, I would not be surprised if YouTube were to start charging fees to the subscribers for premium memberships.
Although predicted to be nothing more than $8 a month — compared to the rates offered by Hulu and Netflix — charging people for a media that has grown based off of its simplicity and acceptance would change its concept entirely and upset many.
If people wanted to pay to see these comedians and actors, they would be better off paying to go watch a movie they are in, or paying for a ticket to their tour. For all we know, we do not need more people investing in and obsessing over something on their computer screen.
Regardless of the future perils and success, Comedy Week was a great idea and was very well received. Unarguably, blending "real-world" fame with YouTube fame was amazing.
The break from seeing movie stars only hang out with other movie stars was refreshing, and many real-life actors seemed like they had more wiggle-room to be themselves and project their comedic genius.
With YouTube being such an expansive platform on which to build, the future looks bright for comedy.