It’s not so hard to remember a time before YouTube, where only a handful of channels held all the cards, and all the attention. The advent of 5G, the ease of internet connectivity, and the continued prominence of a portable and remote lifestyle has skewed public attention to the internet for all aspects of our daily lives.
This is especially true in the news-sphere, where the days of mainstream media viewership dwindling more and more with each passing year, and the popularity and utility of internet platforms like YouTube becoming more engrained into our daily lives as a means of consuming information.
One of the main reasons for the rise of YouTube over the mainstream outlets and sit-down television sets is undoubtedly the portability. Nowadays everyone seems to have a phone with a YouTube connection inherently attached, we see it on public transportation, in classrooms, offices, food courts – everywhere.
People are watching and consuming media in more locations than ever before which has lent itself to the platform perfectly.
News programs have begun slowly shuffling off onto the mobile platforms, to varying degrees of success. The more successful media companies have elected to conform and contort their old ways to fit snugly into a mobile format. Most offering special interest and investigative stories in bite size chunks on the YouTube platform.
There is a steady rise in the number of current events content creators that have established themselves on the platform earlier on and have now taken over a lot of the viewership of their mainstream compatriots.
The convenience cannot be denied either, having information that is nuanced and tailored to specific interests available on demand is a luxury that is hard to shake off. Particularly in the wake of television and linear viewing experiences being inundated with more and more advertising which has accelerated the impatience of modern audiences who wish to have as much access with as little interruption as possible.
So, who will win in the great war for attention? Only time will tell, it seems fairly obvious however, that YouTube has the high ground at this point.