Fitness YouTuber breaks down just how little he makes

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/09/08/fitness-youtuber-breaks-down-j.html

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This sounds a lot like he has a bad business model. Sure you like real music but a smart business person would see the expense and say “nope.”

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My guess is that using popular music led to the subscriber count he enjoys, so sometimes the borrowed interest of a copyrighted song can make it worth the loss, as long as you have other revenue streams. If I were him, I’d seek out arrangements with musicians beforehand, and use a song I didn’t have to pay for at least half the time.

I directed something a few years ago that had a bit in it that cost us a LOT of money, but we bought the song because it was a centerpiece of the concert.

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One would think he would seek a different job, but the lure of fame is undeniable.

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[insert THIS gif here]

Exactly. I think the cautionary tale here is less about “the music industry can be predatory with fees” and more “make good choices for your business practice”.

He really needs to do a cost basis analysis. To your point some of the pop music choices he makes may contribute to his viewership and if that’s true he should target specific songs that boost that and take the cost hit for using them. Then fill in with made up or free use music to fill in at a nominal expense.

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But, but, but… exposure!

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Greedy bastards wanting luxuries like food and electricity. /s

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Food and electricity? Outrageous!
Why, they’ll be wanting rent money next!

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Considering how the labels don’t give a rat’s ass if you’ve made arrangements with the musician, and how they claim ownership of shit they don’t own, like brand new performances of classical music that’s in the public domain, the only solution would be to seek out music by indie musicians who are not signed to a label and have 100% control over their music.

The amount of indie music is a tiny fraction of the universe of all music. The time sink of seeking out indie music, listening to it, finding songs that will work for a video, and then getting permission to use said songs would kill his hourly wage almost as much as paying for copyrighted music does. Basically, he’s screwed either way.

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It’s incredibly unfair that creators of popular content only get crumbs. On the other hand, there’s too many people trying to monetize crap as it is. Imagine if you could actually make proper money off of YouTube. Every loafer with a laptop would be making “10 loudest farts in Hollywood history” or whatever videos and asking me to subscribe.

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Actually, yeah.

Watching his video reveals that while he and his crew make next to nothing on the videos, those videos have generated a large, dedicated audience, and thus other ways of making money (t-shirts, paid subscriptions, some sort of concert thing, etc.).

This video begins as an answer to a commenter calling him money hungry for making these videos, but it ends up being an ad for those other ways of making money. Interesting that he doesn’t reveal what he and his crew are earning from those other ways.

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It’s been interesting to watch the evolution of YouTube channels run as businesses through “Adpocalypse”, “demonetization” and the consolidation of channels into little media empires.

It seems like a weird economy when there’s money to made showing people advertising they’re trying to avoid or, if they don’t, tolerate out of a sense of obligation. In the hypothetical rational market that exists only in the minds of some economists, that kind of cat-and-mouse game should breed resentment against brands rather than generating revenue.

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And thus the Nostalgia Critic does ads for tuxedos.

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Fitness YouTuber breaks down (after realizing) just how little he makes

FTFY

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He should also see what local bands/musicians are in his area he could partner with. He gets cheap music (and often better than mainstream), they get exposure, hopefully cross-pollinate some fans and everyone gets a cut.

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There are youtubers making money with music streams, advertised as “lofi chill/study music”.

They download a bunch of music from small artists, pirate an animation (frequently a cute anime girl), and then set up a box to stream the music on repeat all day long while begging for donations to “pay the server bills” (even though the “server” is a laptop in their living room most of the time).

Somehow, these people make enough money to keep at it. Even though it’s kind of unethical. This is not even including the people that stream copyrighted TV episodes in similar fashion, who I gather make a decent chunk of money as well.

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To be fair, there is a server…in a data center owned and paid for by Google. And videos of them on YouTube which is a little vain if you ask me. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Another awesome idea.

This highlights the issue with many folks doing YouTube or other social media home grown brand creation. They don’t eoither have the business/marketing knowledge to begin with or aren’t able/willing to seek out that expertise.

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He obviously loves what he does, and is getting by with other income streams. He’s doing way better than most people by my maths.

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I’m pretty sure they are doing that anyways, despite the monetization issues.

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