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Being a creator in an attention economy

Doing movie reviews at intersection of politics and media studies.

Anna Grigoryan
Anna Grigoryan
2 min read
Being a creator in an attention economy

Every person has a list of topics about which they can talk for hours on end. For me it's movies, media culture and philosophy. And what was my surprise when I discovered Maia's channel on YouTube.

Today I'm doing an interview with a person for whom I have a "notification bell on" on YouTube, I'm on her Patreon to get her video 1 day before, you get the picture.

Your girl is obsessed (in a good way).

Her videos are always an unexpected ride.

The story can start from a brief review of a movie, then you get tossed into some philosophical topic that ties into the topes in the genre. All this is finished with a review of the cultural digest of the piece of media itself.

Being a creator on YouTube that talks about this kind of topic are definitely not easy.

When you're touching on some contemporary issues and politics, you have the "risk" of going viral and receiving mixed comments. From praise to hate, and sometimes constructive criticisms.

If you talk about a risky subject such as the representation of sex workers in media, you will be demonetized by a platform like YouTube and deemed as an advertiser not friendly.

Positioning yourself as a video essayist also comes with a price of a highly demanding audience.

I'm getting a lot of comments now on this video being like, this is not up to the standard. People are like, you can do better than this. And it's like, oh I'm only one person. My brain can only do so much. I can't have an epiphany video every time I make a video, which I'm finding now the mounting pressure to do.

So creators usually are doing a balancing act of trying to be in the favor of the YouTube algorithm and their audience, with the pressure to produce more content for Patreon. Essentially monetizing aspects of their personal hobbies.

In this interview, we touched on Maia's experience of going viral, her relationship with platforms such as Patreon and YouTube, and what would be the ideal world for her as a creator.

My top favorite videos from Maia.

Creators we talked about:

InterviewCreators

Anna Grigoryan

Profiling Creator Economy.