This Week: Fall is upon us! First meetup of the fall scheduled – 9-27-2023 with my friends Brendan Gahan and Avi Gandhi on the eve of VidCon Baltimore. RSVP here for details!
TikTok Has a Kid Problem: YouTube still beats TikTok among 13-17 year olds in the US, according to new research from PreciseTV on how kids 2-18 use social video platforms. That study also shows that YouTube splits its kid viewership mobile and larger screens, while TikTok is primarily a mobile experience. But their research of 2-11 year olds – released earlier this summer – reveals a shocking truth: Younger kids LOVE TikTok. A whopping 29% of 2–5-year-olds watch TikTok, jumping to 37% of 6-9 and 55% 10-12. The addictive nature of social media – especially among kids – is a real problem. You aren’t supposed to be able to even have a TikTok account unless you are 13. How does a 2-year-old even SEE TikTok? This is a failure of both the platform AND parenting. Expect kids and social to be a big issue over the next few years. RELATED: YouTube’s no saint here either, apparently, as Adalytics recently accused it of violating Coppa laws and targeting ads at kids.
Social Media Gets Its Mark Twain Moment: According to Insider, it’s dead ($). Somewhat provocative, but title aside, I agree with the rise of private networks like Discord and Whatsapp but they’re nothing new. However, the notion that teens and younger kids are abandoning social platforms doesn’t jibe with the data. In fact, it’s quite the opposite according to the research cited above. 13-15 year olds spend even MORE time with YouTube and TikTok than older teens – with both groups still spending nearly two hours a day on each platform. Perhaps its an Instagram problem (the article focused on Insta). IG lags both TikTok and YouTube for teens, and it’s even worse with tweens and younger. 4 times as many 2–12-year-olds prefer YouTube – and twice as many prefer TikTok – over Instagram. What’s really happening? TikTok and YouTube’s efforts to woo the 2-12 set is sadly reaping rewards as they become teens, while parents seem to be wising up to Instagram (and TikTok’s) toxicity. Also, since most kids prefer using social media by themselves, perhaps IRL cuts into URL in our post-Covid era. Dave Morin’s Path was way ahead of his time.
Some Mid-Tail Creators Thrive Too: Despite last week’s look at how media powerlaws favoring the biggest creators (see below), there’s good news for mid-tail creators too. I continue to be impressed with how Alyssa McKay innovates across TikTok and Snap. Her new Bitmoji digital originals on Snap are a sign of things to come. Also, Megan Ewoldsen just released her fifth ME Threads collection, with an order conversion rate of 7.5%. And two famous dogs have joined forces to release a jumbo-sized dog backpack (The Information $). It’s just three examples, but for many more, check out Avi Gandhi’s Creator Logic newsletter, which highlights the business strategies and successes of mostly mid-tail creators.
- Traffic school for community guidelines – now you can wipe away that strike by attending a reeducation seminar (watch here for more details).
- New comparative analytics feature, broader monetization access and improvements to channel memberships.
- Related Links are coming out now!
- Internal strife over at YouTube as senior execs worry that Shorts steal too many views from long-form.
- 10-minute videos coming to Instagram? The incredible sameness of social proceeds apace.
- Meta outs Chinese “Spamoflauge” network of online influence peddlers.
- It’s embarrassing. Why is Meta’s Oversight Board so slow to act?
- Techcrunch sees the decline of Threads as another reason why social is dead.
- Check out this week’s limerick below on AI scraping Meta properties.
OTHER CREATOR ECONOMY
- Tubular releases trend report for first half of 2023, including insight on content length and where to reach new audiences.
- Passionfruit dives deeper into the weirdness around the Creators Guild, including the odd Mosaic connection and the how Triller’s head of talent is also an officer in the org (Triller has had creator issues in the past).
- LinkedIn seems to be devaluing hashtags – I noticed this on my posts recently, and now an unconfirmed report indicates that hashtags = dodo. (HT Matt Navara).
- Last week we shared Andrew Chen’s four reasons why creator economy startups are failing. This post likely informed his “Power Law” argument and describes in more detail why attention aggregates towards top creators.
- NBC highlights 3 cancelled YouTubers making it big on other platforms. I think it’s a flawed premise – as non-YouTubers are also doing well on other platforms too.
- Linktree partners with Olivia Rodrigo to create custom themes for users. Lia Haberman’s a fan, but I don’t get it – isn’t Linktree supposed to promote MY STUFF, for MY FANS – not another creator?
- Linus Tech Tips rolls out revamped testing and methodology transparency, along with a host of other changes. Good stuff, but I wish there was more around conflicts of interest.
- Talent agent giant CAA about to be acquired by Pinault for $7B.
- Queen guitarist agrees with last week’s take that AI will kill music as we know it.
- More blowback over Amazon’s paltry creator payments.
- Here’s what would happen if Instagram and Midjourney had a baby – Ideogram now open to everyone (don’t miss the “top” feed).
- Related – BeFake app raises $3M
- Remember when everyone was investing in creator economy startups? It’s all AI now. Expect saturation and a crash to follow.
- Deepfakes spreading across social video platforms.
- Google develops invisible digital watermark for AI images.
- Pew finds Americans are growing substantially more concerned over AI in daily life.
- 6 Secrets to boosting your Discord server engagement – lessons learned from Faze Clan’s Discord.
LIMERICK OF THE WEEK – if only this were true.
There once was a site called Facebook,
Which privacy concerns, users took.
They wanted control,
Over posts that they’d scroll,
So, AI scraping was what they forsook.
Facebook heard the outcry and the plea,
And sprang into action, you see.
They offered opt-outs,
No more privacy doubts,
Securing all from AI’s prying spree.
AI should not wander and roam,
Scraping data from our digital home.
With a simple selection,
To protect their connection,
Locking posts in an iron-clad tome
So here’s to Facebook, the hero,
Granting users control, zero sorrow.
With posts well-guarded,
Their trust uncharted,
AI scraping? A tale of “no-go”!
Thanks for reading and see you around the internet. Send me a note with your feedback, or post in the comments! Feel free to share this with anyone you think might be interested, and if someone forwarded this to you, you can sign up and subscribe on LinkedIn for free here!
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