Over the past four years, YouTube has gone through a dramatic transformation. We’ve seen the fidelity of our videos evolve from the grainy footage of webcams to the crystal clear beauty of 4K. We’ve seen teenagers who began by vlogging in their bedrooms emerge as media heavyweights, with passionate followings and shows that draw more fans than similar shows on cable TV. And we’ve seen partner revenue continue to grow at a healthy pace, giving our creators the chance to do what they love by finding their fanbase on YouTube. Today, more than 1 billion viewers visit YouTube every month to follow their favorite shows and channels and our daily watchtime continues to grow at 50 percent annually.
Throughout that time, we’ve made a number of key decisions to accelerate this transformation. We first made a series of investments in channels to jumpstart our creator ecosystem. Eighty-six of those channels are now among the top 1 percent of YouTube’s most popular, but the real sign of success was the massive global fan base our creators built.
Then, to ensure our creators had the production support they needed, we created the YouTube Spaces in L.A., Tokyo, London and soon New York. The Spaces offer creators free access to the latest and greatest equipment, sets and support to facilitate creativity and content innovation.
This year, we’ve expanded our support to full-scale marketing and advertising campaigns, helping turn successful creators with large fan bases like Bethany Motaand Epic Rap Battles of History into household names, broadening their appeal to new audiences. These campaigns started in the U.S. but we’re now extending them to places like the U.K., France, Germany and Brazil to ensure that creators around the world can continue to serve as beacons for the creator community at large.
Now, we feel the time is right to make another important investment in our creators. That’s why we’ve decided to fund new content from some of our top creators, helping them not only fulfill their creative ambitions but also deliver new material to their millions of fans on YouTube.
As any creator will tell you, making compelling new content isn’t easy, and we expect to learn a lot through this process. We’ll experiment with new formats and ideas. We’ll get our hands dirty. We’ll make some mistakes. Together, we’ll (hopefully) create some fantastic new content on YouTube. But one thing is certain: there’s no one we’d rather go on this adventure with than our creators.
It’s been an incredible few years for YouTube. And with YouTube stars jumping from their bedrooms to billboards in Times Square, we think there’s never been a better time to be a creator.
Alex Carloss, Head of YouTube Originals, recently watched, “Kutiman – Thru You Too – GIVE IT UP.”