September 24, 2021

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Why I don’t understand YouTube: A middle-aged woman writes

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I learned an astounding fact the other day. No, not the thing about how the literal translation of James Van Der Beek is “James Of The Creek.” Although I did have to have a sit down for a couple of days after that. [1] [2]

This fact was to do with videos of people playing games on YouTube, which are of course hugely popular – some of them, inexplicably, even more widely viewed than that clip of an Olympic sprinter racing a giraffe. [3] In fact, 48 per cent of YouTube gamers spend more time watching videos than playing games. [4] (Although, since that survey was conducted, many of the other 52 per cent have said they didn’t really understand the full implications of their response, and in light of revelations about the potential economic fallout and the shambolic nature of the negotiation process, they would answer differently if asked again tomorrow.)

But what really made my jaw hit the floor, almost to the point where I could be mistaken for James Van Der Beek, was learning that 40 per cent of people who watch games on YouTube have never played a video game. [5]

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