Over the last couple of years, YouTube’s algorithmic changes and official statements have shown a clear preference for corporations over the creators that helped build the platform.
And in an interview with NBC reporter Dylan Byers, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki shared some insights that confirm the reduced prevalence of YouTube creators on the platform.
At the start of the interview, Byers asked Wojcicki whether more people are watching content that’s coming from traditional media companies on YouTube.
“I’d say about half of YouTube if I were to estimate it, comes from YouTube creators,” Wojcicki responded.
“There’s probably another quarter of YouTube that’s about music,” Wojcicki added. “And then we have, probably like, again, and these are all estimates, maybe another quarter of YouTube that is about, that comes from traditional media.”
This isn’t the first time Wojcicki has made comments that point to the reduced weight of YouTube creators on the platform.
During a December 2019 interview on 60 Minutes Overtime, Wojcicki said the site’s algorithms won’t recommend YouTubers for breaking news and will instead promote “companies that we know have a long tradition of delivering reliable news.”
And in October 2019, the official YouTube Creators account tweeted that the platform had set a goal of having “at least half the videos on trending come from YouTubers.”
Do you have any idea how dumb this sounds @SusanWojcicki ?
YouTube will not be the number 1 video site in the future.. You are going to have a mass exit to another site and everyone one of you that made these dumb calls will he fired for making the google stock crash! pic.twitter.com/gkQcUCCB8W
— KEEM 🍿 (@KEEMSTAR) October 19, 2019
Beyond the official statements coming from YouTube and its representatives, independent analysis of the site’s algorithms has shown a huge boost in recommendations to legacy media outlets over the last year.
The YouTube changes have even spurred developers to create tools such as De-Mainstream YouTube, allowing users to reverse some of this artificial boosting of mainstream media outlets and put the focus back on independent YouTube creators.
Looking at the last 10 years, our analysis of the top 100 most subscribed YouTube channels has shown a major shift towards corporate content on the platform.
This list went from being made up of 80% YouTubers in November 2010 to being dominated by corporate brands and celebrities and containing just 28% YouTubers in December 2019.