The issue (an issue?) with YouTube (and others)03. January 2021 | link this post
This observation is certainly not limited to YouTube but has been driven home for me recently on that platform: with my old computer getting a bit slow and also being big and power-hungry I was looking into the new M1 Macs and, as you do, went to YouTube to look for some people sharing their impressions to get something beyond just the technical data. What I found however was a lot of "why I bought XYZ and YOU SHOULD TOO", " the BIG ISSUE with XYZ", "NO BIG ISSUES with XYZ" and things of that sort.
Now this is of course not new. Essentially everyone actually making a living from something like YouTube (or a part of their living) is in a race for what boils down to eyeball-minutes. Every person interested in something has a certain amount of time and interest to spend on watching videos about that thing, so you'll need to get some of that. And if you're dependent on those watched minutes for Ad revenue to make a living then you'll need the most predictable way to get a part of this, and flashy headlines plus a loud and excited tone when talking about things seem to be where its at.
It's not limited to the world of computers of course. Being into photography I've for years seen this whenever new cameras come out. And while I'm interested in technology I've longe since tuned out of all of this. It sad to say, but over the years I've seen a bunch of well-intended people on platforms like YouTube go down that path. There is the idea of going full-time on producing videos and then comes the part with making money or rather having to make money. Slowly but surely the loud videos with the overly catchy and clickbaity titles increase and it all becomes very sad to watch.
This is not a way to do anything like well-balanced journalism or something resembling that. It's essentially a way to "sell" your content. As much as I understand why people do it and the motives aren't nefarious per se (who doesn't need to make a living after all) I also don't thing this is making the internet a better place. In the end its just making it a loud and unpleasant place where we invest loads of energy (both mentally and quite figuratively in the form of enormous amounts of data traffic) into - well, into being loud and unpleasant.