Streaming is a worldwide method that helps people stream a variety of forms of media that range from YouTube videos to music. It seems beneficial to a lot of consumers but it can be financially debilitating to many companies and artists. People who access these streaming services are never exposed to the ugly side of it because they enjoy streaming for free. Not many people realize that their “free” streaming comes at a cost for their favorite artists or companies.
By streaming for free, streamers are financially disabling and cheating their favorite artists. In other words, our use of free streaming, as consumers, robs producers. For example, YouTube enables users to stream their favorite songs and videos for free. But by streaming for free, we fail to compensate the producers of the content we’re streaming. On the other hand, services like Youtube Red, a paid streaming subscription service, do compensate artists and creators but users are less willing to pay for a membership. Yet, by supporting Youtube Red, we help support creators.
Shane Dawson, a YouTube creator, author, actor, songwriter, singer, sketch comedian and film director, is a victim of our free streaming. Despite having millions of views, subscribers, and assistance from his brand deals and sponsors, he has recently mentioned that he is struggling economically because he isn’t earning money from his YouTube videos. This could be due to the fact that YouTubers only get paid when a viewer clicks on a featured advertisement. Indeed, views are not the main factor in how a YouTube creator generates money. On the contrary, it’s all based on ad revenue. Hence, in addition to consuming free streaming services, we also fail to support creators through advertisements.