Get one million views overnight!: How YouTube influences the creation and reception of documentary film

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Montana State University - Bozeman, College of Arts & Architecture


Trends in media creation, distribution and consumption have led YouTube to become a platform where masses of creators and consumers come together to tell stories, entertain and share information. Documentary filmmakers have begun to utilize YouTube for the distribution of films and develop content specifically for the platform. YouTube culture has influenced creators to produce content with an aesthetic distinct to the platform. The indiscriminate nature of the platform allows for nearly any creator to produce content. A participatory culture is created where viewers can critique and share additional information in a comment section and influence future content creation. YouTube is assisting filmmakers in accomplishing their objectives by linking them with an audience that desires their content. My film, Scumbag Hunters, was influenced by what I call the YouTube niche. Creating this film designed for the YouTube niche and distributing on the platform may be a favorable avenue compared to traditional distribution methods in accomplishing the objectives of entertaining, inspiring and educating the audience.


Scumbag hunters is a film that is part of the student's thesis project.



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