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Episode 32: June Debrief with Anthony

Anthony D'Angelo the executive director of the ICG and Hank break down some events from the past couple weeks. We'll go through the Instagram algorithm, net neutrality, YouTube subscriptions and more.


Episode 31: Jordan Maron (Captain Sparkles)

Our guest today just celebrated his 10 millionth subscriber and the arrival of his diamond play button. Jordan Maron, also known as Captain Sparkles, is not a guy who suffers from a lack of drive. He started his career as a YouTube gamer playing Call of Duty, but ended up being part of creating the massive wave of Minecraft content on YouTube. Jordan's Minecraft music videos have gotten....a lot of views. But he also understood that that situation wouldn't last forever. We're going to talk...


Episode 30: May Debrief with Anthony

We're doing a new thing here on Creator Chats...once a month, I'm going to debrief a bit with Anthony D'Angelo, the Executive Director of the ICG about what he's up to, and what big news things are happening in the world of online video. For example, in this podcast, we'll be talking about the history of MCNs, how that's different from the way agencies work, YouTube's new self-reporting tool for monetization, the benefits of exclusive brand deal representation. And we also talked about why...


Episode 29: Kati Morton

Kati is an actual mental health professional, a trained therapist who also makes YouTube videos about mental health. We're going to talk some about her own strategy for growing her channel, picking topics, and dealing with content that is less...well...correct. But we'll also discuss some of the challenges internet creators are likely to face, both in terms of the constant stress, and also how we are unfortunately likely to tie our self worth to our numbers, which isn't great, since roller...


Episode 28: Anthony D'Angelo

Anthony D'Angelo has been making YouTube videos for even longer than I have, and he's been studying online video, culture, and media academically for the last four years. And now Anthony is taking a new step, taking on the role of Executive Director at the ICG. After two years, Laura Chernikoff is stepping down, and Anthony will be taking her place. You can find out more about that change by checking @ICGuild on Twitter. Anthony and I never have uninteresting conversations, and I'm really...


Episode 27: Elle Mills

Elle Mills is one of the biggest and most universally celebrated break out creators in recent memory. Every video is a story, and we're going to talk to her about some of the craft that goes into telling those stories and how she imagines her creative process. We'll also talk about how she has, even at such a young age, repeatedly re-invented herself, and managed to find success each time. Elle's success started on Twitter, and continues there, where a huge percentage of her engagement and...



Steven Williams, better known as Boogie2988, has been making videos about games, culture, politics, YouTube, and his own struggles with his mental and physical health for a long-long time. Also an avid Twitch streamer, he talks about how important it is for creators to diversify themselves because, like, who knows what could happen. Hank and Steven discuss everything from picking brand deals that fit, to navigating the minefield of potential missteps you can make while trying to take all...


Episode 25: Andrew Huang

Andrew Huang started his career doing weird song comissions. He's an extremely prolific musician, but he has also found success sharing his song-making and production process and pulling back the curtain a bit with complex, beautiful, inspiring, and educational videos. I was really excited to talk to him about his strategy, how he never seems afraid to change things, and try new formats. We also talk about slowing content down...not needing to be going at 150% speed all the time, and how...


Episode 24: Sabrina Cruz

Sabrina Cruz is both a college student and a professional YouTuber. And while she's studying math and economics, she’s teaching history on her YouTube channel. So, like, not really normal stuff for a 19 year old. It’s a little intimidating how together and talented she is. Hank and Sabrina spend some time talking about everything from brand deals to demonetization and beyond.


Episode 22: Rob Scallon

Rob Scallon has developed a great toolkit. Part of that is that he can play a lot of instruments very well, but he's also worked very smart in creating tools that go beyond that. His understanding of what audiences want, his relationships with other musicians and YouTubers, as well as the production and business team he's built are all part of how he's kept his channel growing into a successful business. We're going to talk about how he consistently comes up with great ideas for...


Episode 19: Akilah Hughes

Akilah Hughes has been making people laugh on YouTube years. And while her biggest videos have millions of views, her average video garners respectable, but not huge numbers—meaning that making a living just through advertising isn't a thing. Akilah considers her YouTube channel as a series of audition tapes for potential work in traditional media, and she's been very successful in doing that; she has lots of hosting work under her belt, a new project with Crooked Media, and a full time...


Episode 17: Anna Brisbin (Brizzy Voices)

Anna Brisbin (Brizzy Voices) has a YouTube channel with over a million subscribers that focuses mostly on impressions, and as with many creators who started out with a channel focused on one kind of content, she was initially hesitant to branch out into new genres. Now, Brizzy Voices posts music and cosplay tutorials, sketch comedy, vlogs, and collabs—a strategy that has brought longevity to her channel that you can't get with just viral hits.


Episode 16: Joss Fong

Joss Fong is the Senior Editorial Producer at Vox Video, and as their second employee working on Video, she has fascinating insights into how Vox works, how their content is created, and how they empower people to be amazing explainers. Joss dives into some of the fundamental factors that decide what is or isn't a Vox video, why Video can never be just decoration, how they imagine their audience, where they find their footage, and how they maintain a solid brand while their content roams...


Episode 15: Jackson Bird

Jackson Bird is a professional speaker, YouTube creator, activist, and waffle aficionado. While making his "Will it Waffle" videos, he also discusses gender, social justice, and his own gender transition. While we chatted, Jack said something I really loved, "I know how one should play the YouTube game, but I am not always interested in playing it." Figuring out how online creation fits into our future is different for every creator, and it can be an extremely important part of a person's...


Episode 13: gunnarolla

On today's Creator Chat, Hank talks with gunnarolla, sometimes referred to as "YouTube's Greatest Tragedy" because of his mix of extremely high quality, fascinating content, and relatively small audience size. They chat about when school is and is not useful, the difference between working by yourself and being part of a team, how to know your strengths, where the true value of your audience lies, and how he makes it all work with a small audience.


Episode 12: Lisa Filipelli

Lisa Filipelli has been a manager to digital media creators for about as long as there have been managers for digital media creators. During the recording of this podcast, she received over 300 emails. We talk about where Vine went wrong, whether or not other companies are learning from those mistakes, how advertisement and endorsement dollars are flowing into online media, and whether (and why) the lifespans of media stars are getting shorter and shorter.


Episode 11: Jaiden Animations

In the last year, Jaiden's channel has grown astoundingly fast. Hilarious, relatable animated videos have become a genre all their own and Jaiden is both a pioneer and a master of that genre. Jaiden's videos do a remarkable job of sharing a full story of who she is, all without (until very recently) ever showing her face. In this chat, which we had on stage at VidCon 2017 in Anaheim, we talk about some of the difficulties of her genre, her creative process, how she developed her style, and...


Episode 10: Hannah Witton

Hannah Witton takes on some sensitive topics on her path to making great content about sex and relationships. It's not easy to make content like this broad enough to apply generally without stepping on individual perspective, but Hannah has to hit that balance. Making a living talking about sex isn't easy, as ad rates for this kind of content have always been low. But Hannah has made it work with a combination of publishing, sponsored videos, brand deals, and speaking engagements. Always...


Episode 9: Dave Wiskus

Brand deals are vital income for a majority of professional creators. So while you haven't ever heard of Dave Wiskus, you have probably seen the effects of his work. Dave sells and manages brand deals for a bunch of YouTube creators. How? With a tremendous amount of effort and care. We all have things we can learn from the people who are pioneering this new world, which is why Dave is here to talk shop with us today.


Episode 8: Burnie Burns

Burnie Burns is a legend and you will be unsurprised to hear that he and I can seamlessly talk shop more or less perpetually. Rooster Teeth, which Burnie started with a few friends before YouTube even existed, has become possibly the largest digital-native content company in the world. They make so much fantastic stuff, and have pioneered everything from paid subscriptions to community development. I can never talk to Burnie for long enough, and I'm glad to share this one with you today.