With over 40 percent of people online utilizing YouTube everyday, it is rapidly becoming the new form of media. The surplus of content on the website means there is always something new to watch. From the outside, it may seem as though YouTube is filled with only funny cat videos, but upon deeper examination, one will find that Youtube has created a new form of entertainment, and a new type of celebrity. Not a celebrity that is followed around by cameras of paparazzi constantly, but rather a celebrity who chooses to film themself every day. If someone does not know any of these YouTube celebrities, no worries, here are the five YouTube stars people should know in 2015:
John and Hank Green:
Last summer, millions of teens found themselves sobbing while watching “The Fault in Our Stars.” They can blame the heartbreaking movie on the author who wrote the book the film was based on, John Green. Along with being a #1 New York Times bestselling author, Green has become famous with teenagers through the YouTube channel, vlogbrothers, which he created with his brother Hank. The two make a wide variety of videos ranging from educational topics, such as discussing the political situation in Syria, to humorous videos on farts. The brothers also created the YouTube convention VidCon in 2010, which has grown to become the largest YouTube convention, where 18,000 Youtube fans gather together each year. Another annual event they run is Project for Awesome, a 48-hour live stream that raises money for multiple charities which is chosen through online votes. The 2014 Project for Awesome raised more than $1.2 million to be split among Books for Africa, Witness Center for Excellence in Education and nine other charities with the help of their dedicated fans, nerdfighteria. Together, they have created the catch phrase ‘don’t forget to be awesome’ or better known as DFTBA. Their main goal along with their fans is to decrease “world suck.”
YouTube can be an outlet for teenagers to forget about the troubles in their everyday life and share their passions with others. Bethany Mota, who started her YouTube channel when she was 13 years old, is the poster child for this idea. Mota created her youtube channel, macbarbie07, after being bullied. She now has the 35th most subscribed channel. Her fans, or as she calls them “motavators,” fell in love with Mota’s quirky and sassy personality. Her motavators helped Mota win a Teen Choice Award for Choice Female Webstar in 2014. She started to create her own empire after launching her clothing line with Aeropostale in December 2013, which helped with the retailer’s sales among teenage girls. Traditional media started to notice Mota, and she became the first Youtube star to be casted on Dancing with the Stars, placing fourth in the shows 19th season. With her growing presence on social media and her successful clothing line, it is hard to tell what the future holds for the 19-year-old.
Much like the current British invasion going on in the music industry, with artists like Sam Smith and Ed Sheeran, the same trend is occurring online. Leading the Youtube invasion is beauty blogger Zoe Sugg, better known as Zoella. She started her online career with her blog www.zoella.co.uk, and soon later started her channel. Sugg is the 46th most subscribed Youtuber, as her channel has over 7.1 million subscribers and 344 million views. She has gained popularity viewers through her perky, bubbly personality that shows through her hauls, hair and makeup tutorials or lifestyle videos. She has been open with her struggles with anxiety and promotes mental health throughout her channel. Her vulnerability along with her best friend attitude helped her win the Radio 1 Teen Choice Award for Best British Vlogger in 2013 and 2014. Sugg began to create her own productions after launching her bath and beauty line, Zoella Beauty, in September 2014. In addition to her work in the beauty industry, Sugg published her first book, “Girl Online,” in November 2014. The New York Times bestseller broke the record for highest first-week sales for a debut author. With the announcement of sequel to “Girl Online” coming this summer, 2015 is just the beginning for Sugg’s new empire.
Everyone has that one friend who thinks he or she can sing, but whose voice actually sounds like nails on a chalkboard. For 3.1 million people, that friend is Miranda Sings. According to her Twitter bio, she is an actress, singer, dancer, model and magician. Miranda’s fans, or better known as Mirfandas, became intrigued with her high rise sweatpants, ugly shirt, red lipstick that goes beyond her lips, crooked smile and her catchphrase “haters back off.” While watching Miranda, don’t be worried that this tone-deaf person actually thinks she’s a talented singer, Miranda is actually a character created and played by Colleen Ballinger. The character of Miranda was made as a satire of the mediocre egotistical singers trying to make it big through Youtube. Miranda has made appearances on Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Ballinger has also been taking the character of Miranda on tour since 2009. Miranda is going on tour again in 2015 with her, “Miranda 4 President” tour where she claims she was born to be president and will run in 2015.
It is common for people on Tumblr to be self proclaimed professional fangirls openly sharing their love for One Direction or Beyonce. For most, their online obsession is shared between their close friends. However, Tyler Oakley shares his love for Queen B to 6.3 million of his best friends. He has gained followers through his bubbly and joyful personality, and his videos range from talking about health care to his love for taco bell. His best friend attitude has helped him have the 62nd most subscribed channel. After making his channel in September 2007, Oakley soon came out to his fans and is now an Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Transgender (LGBT) activist. For his 25th birthday in March 2014, Oakley conducted a birthday fundraiser with the Trevor Project, an organization for the prevention of suicide for LGBTQ youth. He initially intended to raise $150,000, but quickly surpassed that raising $525,704 for the charity. In 2014, Oakley won two awards at the teen choice awards, choice favorite male youtube star and choice web collaboration with Australian Youtuber Troye Sivan. 2015 holds even more success for the philanthropic Youtube personality.