If YouTube began as America’s Funniest Home Videos, it has now become Saturday Night Live — including the commercials. The platform’s biggest hits are all produced by professionals.
The change in the way that the most popular YouTube videos are produced parallels the professionalization of blogging that has occurred in the last decade. At one point, many of the most popular blogs were run by single individuals, just because. But media companies responded by creating blogs of their own, or simply hiring bloggers or purchasing blogs. So, after a brief flowering of user-generated online media rivaling the scale and reach of professional online media, we’ve seen a retrenchment of traditional media structures.
(Video: How Animals Eat Their Food by MisterEpicMann, YouTube’s #3 video for the year with over 89 million views.)