When YouTube started out as a cool little start-up for anyone to upload videos, watch and enjoy, it was an immediate hit, like many other social media channels. The question has never been about the content on social media, but the value. More specifically, how to generate revenue from it.
But the Tubes have all grown up, and with streaming alternative like Netflix, are taking the TV giants to task with Milennial viewership. More people than ever are watching streamed content on their phones or laptops instead of television sets, a statement that continues to be true with each passing day.
Apparently, YouTube determined that enough people have switched over full-time to begin the next phase of the takeover by charging for content. Users with over 10,000 subscribers will be given the option to charge .99 cents per month, with the option to set the price higher if so desired.
Though it seems like a disappointment, it's just the first step in the digital economic evolution. With this model, you won't have to worry about bundling cable channels or paying extra for channels you don't watch, as you'd only pay for shows — not even channels anymore — that you really want to watch. This will spread the wealth more to individuals and allow creative people more space to do their thing, so long as they keep their subscriber base high enough to keep making money.
Thus far, only a few companies are in on the scheme, but YouTube will open it up to all those eligible soon. The era of free stuff on the internet is, in part, coming to and end, but it will all be worth it in the long run.