Cory Williams the “first professional YouTuber” is leaving after algorithm changes wiped out his livelihood

Williams joins others in criticizing the platform for not supporting independent creators.


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Cory Williams, who has called himself the “first professional YouTuber” has declared that he’s leaving YouTube after 14 years as the platform’s recent algorithm changes have caused him to lose 96% of his audience and has obliterated his income.

“I always said I would stick through this. I would be here no matter what. I would never give up on YouTube,” Williams said in a vlog posted to the platform.

Williams, who makes vlog lifestyle videos, says he is going to stop uploading to his two channels, SMP Films (c627,000 subscribers) and LiveEachDay (c430,000 subscribers).

“The reason for this decision is because I feel like YouTube has given up on m,” he said.

Like many others have recently complained, Williams said that Google’s video platform changes have meant that his channels are “dying very quickly.”

While Williams does still get views from his subscribers, he says YouTube’s recommendation engine has all but killed off the majority of his recommended views.

These are the views that are gained from YouTube suggesting videos to users in the sidebar, related videos sections, and on the homepage – and are important for helping channels grow.

YouTubers are increasingly at the mercy of the platform’s algorithms and if there’s no way for users to discover a channel, the channel doesn’t grow. And when a YouTube channel exists in a black hole with little way for others to discover the content, the channel dies and engagement plummets.

In his vlog, Williams said that frustrations over YouTube have caused his mental and physical health to suffer and said that it’s time that he parts ways with the platform, not wanting to leave the livelihood of his family at the mercy of Google’s fleeting and ever-changing algorithms.

“I cannot live my life this way anymore,” Williams said. “I can’t live thinking that my career can be turned off by some smart robot who magically doesn’t want me to be seen for no apparent reason and nobody can explain it to me.”

Williams will join many high profile YouTubers who have left the platform in recent months. The controversial comedy channel Soph was recently booted off the platform and took her videos to BitChute and DLive.

The world-famous Overly Attached Girlfriend, that was once a staple of YouTube and meme culture recently gave a message to her 1.2 million subscribers that she was leaving and moving on after getting caught up in the changes that YouTube made after complaints that pedophiles were using the comments sections of videos to share covert messages in videos that contain kids.

Williams said that he’s going to leave YouTube in October, the 14th anniversary of his channel’s debut, and said that he will still upload a few videos before
then.

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Cindy Harper

Cindy Harper is a tech news staff writer based in Maryland, USA. After getting her start in local journalism, Cindy now reports mostly on social media stories for Reclaim. [email protected]
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