Reality TV vs. Vlogging
It is obvious that in these recent years, more and more people have been turning to online entertainment more than television. With things like Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, and the like, television has become out-dated and redundant. On Youtube, a new style of video has arisen: vlogs, or “video logs.” Vlogs are films of a Youtuber’s day-to-day life. Of course, this is very similar to reality TV shows. The difference seems to be that reality TV is typically scripted, while vlogs usually are not.
“I think reality TV is not as ‘real’ as vlogging. I like to watch my favorite Youtubers vlog because it’s almost like you really get to know them/spend their day with them. I find watching vlogging so much fun,” Emma Wiseman ‘18 said.
Popular vloggers/Youtubers Joshua and Colleen Evans were recently interviewed on MTV about their lives as vloggers/youtubers, and the fact that they chose to put the film of their wedding online. Their wedding video received a total of 7,928,520 views as of January from fans who had been looking forwards to the wedding for months, as the couple occasionally had talked about its progression throughout their vlogs. Viewing their episode on MTV, and their videos about their time on the channel, one can tell that MTV did try to play-up the drama in their lives and relationship, as most TV shows try to do.
“Basically, MTV made us look very bad,” Colleen Evans said in a later vlog with Josh. “They filmed so much of our life, they could have put so many happy moments in, but they [only] put negative stuff.”
In 2012, Cartoon Network created a show, The High Fructose Adventures of Annoying Orange, based on the highly popular Annoying Orange YouTube channel in attempt to get in on some of the rising popularity of Youtubers. To their dismay, however, it was a flop. The series officially premiered on June 11, 2012, and, with a rating of 2.8/10 on imdb, was cancelled not even a full 2 years later in March of 2014 .
Shay Butler has vlogged about his life and family every day for the past 2,000-plus days, and now plans to bring his online personality to the reboot of AFV, which debuted a new season in early October on ABC. Every Sunday for 17 weeks, Shay and his family of six post a five-minute clip on YouTube. The goal is to create the link between the digital and broadcast versions of the show. The secondary goal, of course, is to attract the kind of young YouTube audience that is already watching Shay to the staid broadcast TV program.
Perhaps one reason for the sudden increase in popularity of vloggers can be attributed to the rise of the ‘hipster-culture,’ as watching vloggers is much less mainstream than watching reality tv, or any television for that matter.
“Vlogging isn’t as known as most reality shows are, so I could agree with the idea that some people might feel cooler being into something less known,” Bailey Savage ‘18 commented.
According to a Verizon survey, today’s younger audience watches more than a third of their “television” online, and according to a survey on the blog Variety, the five most influential figures among teenagers in the US are all popular Youtubers. It is clear that a new era of entertainment is arising, and television is slowly being left behind.