YouTube and its Far Reaching Affects

I used to think of youtube as something to go to and watch music videos (whether original or not), and to watch humorous and artistic videos. Something I knew existed but never really explored was vlogging.

Vlogging is blogging but just in video form rather than text form. I brushed this off as somewhat stupid and stopped even thinking about it around the same time I stopped instant messaging people on AIM; I denounced this form of communication because of its lack of emotion and tendency to cause drama.

I failed to realize what else besides the negatives vlogging offered, but ended up discovering it by watching An Anthropological Introduction to YouTube.

This video is quite long, but also very interesting and offers an entirely different perspective to why vlogging is so popular.

Our society has become increasingly individualistic and has removed much of the community we used to have. We no know our neighbors, we no longer have interactions with local store owners, but instead we see few people and the people we see we can’t expect to see again since the size of our towns has grown so much. This has led numerous peopleĀ feeling a lack of community. To solve this problem people have been driven to youtube to find this lost community.

While I have been trying to build communities locally, I find it very interesting that communities are being created globally like this. It never occurred until now that youtube is a community, and a rapidly developing one. Local connections seem the best to me, but why not utilize this great resource to extend your community to worldwide.

This new youtube community has helped many people and grown rapidly, though it has also led to many interesting new problems. These problems range from people not being authentic on youtube to people being harshly and vulgar due to the anonymity. These both have caused often unintended suffering and frustration for unseen victims.

A different and more pressing problem has also popped up. This is the problem of copyright laws. Most of the copyright laws were created before the internet existed leading to many problems now. A majority of the videos created on the internet, and a plethora of the things we do are illegal. The video above briefly touches upon this subject, and includes an interesting exerpt from a TED talks by Larry Lessig.


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