Tuesday, July 24, 2012

An open letter to TGN and other Networks

Ever since the launch of the Partner Program in 2007 there was the lust for greed when it comes to the type of videos you could make. In 2008 when this program was expanded and again in 2011 when the ability to monetize videos was given out to everyone, the problem got worse and worse.

A year ago, there was a tragic shooting in Tuscon, AZ about 2 hours away from where I lived. Like so many tragedies before it, there were countless YouTubers who were making money by rushing to the camera as quickly as possible to be the first to report it. Below is my video and I do hope all of you watch it.

This is where the Networks come in. See, with the trend now, almost all of the view whores who cash in on people's deaths and tragedy are in networks. To my knowledge none are in TGN, but it is possible. It is not just the YouTuber who makes a profit from this blood money, and it is not just YouTube either. The Networks take a cut each time someone dies and these people seek to make money from it.

Below is a few examples of the type of videos I am talking about. Some are with Maker Studios and others are with Machinima.

Now the supporters of these large and successful channels will say that the media also makes money from death and tragedy. Well to them I say I also cry foul on tabloid journalism. I am actually friends with Hemijeep19 and iShatonU, the difference is they openly admit to being view whores. iShatonU even apologized after he was called out for his video profiting from the death at the winter olympics. Other people try to defend their actions claiming that this is how they feed their family and that we are just jealous because we can't beat them in Call of Duty. I swear someone made that claim.

So what is the solution? Well flagging the video doesn't quite work, as these videos in themselves don't violate the TOS. Rather I think the solution is for these Networks to adopt a policy that they will not allow themselves to profit from blood money. For this purpose I call upon my own Network TGN to step up and be the first to institute this policy.

I call upon TGN to issue a public statement that they will not allow their users to exploit death and tragedy for profit. Any user who is caught doing so will have the video demonetized and repeat offenders will be removed from the network.

If you agree with this policy, I would encourage you to forward it on to the network you are a part of. Encourage them to step up and do the right thing and work to put an end to making a living from blood money.