Right now, I know that some of my vlogging mentors are slapping their palms to their foreheads! Vidcon? Are you kidding?
Many argue, with some validation, that YouTube gatherings should be organic affairs, and that there certainly shouldn't be hefty admission fees associated attendance at these events. While I agree that most gatherings of YouTubers and YouTube enthusiasts should be as open as possible, I look at this specific as an opportunity to gain a sense of both the YT community, and the approach the entertainment industry at large is taking with the YT phenomena.
This is a world that is being defined by independent creators from young children to the elderly; it's a form that is being invented every day. It's also a form, I believe, that offers great opportunity. What does opportunity mean on YT and in social media at large? For most, social media and YouTube is simply and purely a means for self expression. To some seeking more tangible "success" on YouTube, the prospect of a YouTube partnership (a profit sharing arrangement offered to successful YouTubers) looms large; to others, it's a means to drive other ventures: selling or promoting music or a musician (so many have already heard the instant legend: Justin Bieber came out of YouTube). To the media at large, it's seen as a way to drive traditional media - everything from trailers to exclusive video content. The "Fred" YT phenomena of a couple of years ago led to a movie deal for the teen creator. For most, social media and YouTube is simply and purely a means for self expression.
My belief, however, is the greatest opportunities for social media lay just over the horizon. If social media is a platform of self-expression distinct form television and movies, then I believe it will evolve and become something that individuals will produce for in its on right - not as a means to another end. The kids today that create YouTube videos as a means to develop a career in movies will create tomorrow to build a career in social media.
I'm going to Vidcon to better understand the direction of the social media community (while clearly recognizing of course, that many others can't be there).
Where do you think social media is going?