Since its launch in 2005, YouTube has vastly impacted not only the marketing world, but it’s significantly shaped Gen Z, generation Z, making their most visited website YouTube. In this article, I’ll be discussing the ways in which YouTube has changed teen culture.
The, “YouTube generation”, refers to the abundance of young people who predominantly use YouTube as their main source of entertainment.
So, why do teens adore YouTube so much? Aniyah Taylor, a sophomore at Brien McMahon High school and an avid YouTube watcher, insists that the app has this much appeal due to the abundant information it offers with just the click of a button. It’s clear that Gen Z isn’t unfamiliar with information at the tips of their fingers, but Aniyah explained that watching videos and hearing another person speak actually makes it feel more personal; it feels as if they’re speaking directly to you. With such a wide variety of videos to choose from, it makes sense that teens are
spending a lot of time on YouTube.
Popular video titles among teenagers include; Get ready with me, My high school morning/night routine, What I eat in a day, My skincare routine, A Day in my Fife, Makeup tutorials, Conspiracy videos, and Story times. “I really like watching morning routines and day in my life videos because it kind of feels like me and the YouTuber are friends. It’s just nice to watch stuff I can relate closely with.” Aniyah explained. Teens seem to crave relatable content now more than ever. They’re bored of the polished and highly edited TV shows, or even the previous popular YouTube videos, which were highly edited. They want to see other teens doing things they actually do in their own lives. “Study with me” videos on YouTube are popular as well, because they allow kids to have a virtual study buddy. My point is that there is a plethora of video topics for everyone on YouTube, there really is something for everyone.
Also, thanks to Youtube, getting recognition for your talents is easier than ever. Literally uploading a video of yourself could be your gateway to fame. This, I believe, is one of the best uses of the app. Anyone with a phone has the chance to promote themselves or their ideas. 75% of kids and teens ages 6-17 aspire to be YouTubers. Teens no longer see YouTube as just somewhere they get entertainment from, they view it as a career option. For a growing number of people, YouTube is a job. With the popularization of vlogging, filming your daily life can possibly gain you a follower.
On the other hand, adults may find themselves browsing for videos less often than teenagers do. My mother, who is 34 years old, admits that although she doesn’t frequently use YouTube, it has helped her with a few things. When I asked her how much YouTube she watches, she explained that she doesn’t use it regularly, “It’s fun to watch some hair and makeup tutorials once in a while, and I’ve watched a few documentaries on there. It’s not the first place I go to for entertainment though." Actually, 96% of internet users from age 18-24 use YouTube, and 90% of users are male.
YouTube is seen as an app, and website, that anyone any age can use and be able to find some relatable content. We thank YouTubers for giving us the content we look forward too as well as inspiring us kids and teens to be ourselves and upload our own content.