Project: Week 5 Reflection

The fifth and final week of my project was focused on YouTube. It was a different week compared to the other four, but it was educational, simple, and fun. There are more aspects to YouTube then originally thought, which made research smoother from Monday on. Five posts were completed for the fifth straight week, as promised, and the project has been closed and is now in a “safe place.”

I did not have a direction for the week. I felt the need to finally take a week and completely wing it. YouTube may be a simple media outlet, but it has so much to digest. I thought it wise to take it one day at a time to see where it takes me. It inevitably led me here, but that’s besides the point.

I started things off pretty basic on Monday with my post on “views.” I looked at the raw data and analyzed it. I wanted to know how often these bands were getting viewed. The research showed the disparity within the genre. Indie rock is a very diverse genre whose followers can span from 100 to 100 million, depending on the band. Overall, the genre is slowly becoming popular. The raw numbers, the amount of views, made it apparent that bands still need to be using this social media outlet.

On Wednesday I aimed to discover more about the “thumbs up” and “thumbs down” feature on every video. Obviously it is equivalent to a “like” or “dislike” but I need more. I hit the calculator and did some numbers crunching. The data was conclusive, and not in my favor, that the videos are overwhelmingly “liked.” It also made it pretty clear that only fans are viewing the videos, which is a no-brainer. The amount of “votes” varied, with the international bands dominating that category. The research did not go as planned, and was a minor failure. I pushed on.

Friday I looked into the content available from each band, specifically live material. Because aired live or acoustic shows are a form of promotion, I thought it prudent to discuss it. I wanted to know if the bands were using this tool. Some were, some were not. It was much more common for lesser known bands, actually, to post such videos, but not exclusively. Bands on the west coast had a much higher chance of releasing a live or acoustic video. The videos I focused on were not “posted” by the bands themselves, but by third parties. This showed which bands were active with radio and TV broadcast stations, and those who were not.

Saturday’s research was not ideal. I unknowingly walked into a spider-web of trickery. I went into the research wanting to know more about something that kept coming up called “VEVO.” Instead of testing the waters, I jumped into the idea and eventually found out that vevo (which is how it is now stylized) is not related directly with YouTube. This was OK though, I learned about something I did not know previous to this day. I also learned to always dig before attempting to bury the body, so to speak. The research practically turned into a profile study, which turned it to be decent enough. I learned that each band has a “profile” which, depending on the band, has a lot to offer.

Today’s finale dealt with the search bar. You know when you search something on Google, Yahoo, Bing, or whatever the hell else, and there are “suggestions” after typing a syllable or two? I wanted to know what the popular items were AFTER typing in each band name. I searched, for instance, The Lumineers and the first thing that came up was “Ho Hey.” That happens to be their big hit single. I documented what I found, and patterns began to form. Older “hits” were more popular in general, and people were not hesitant to search “lyrics,” “live,” or album titles.

The project is in the bag, and finals are starting to stare back at me. It has been a tiresome, but educational 35 days dealing with indie bands and social media. Curveballs were thrown, but I’d like to think I made it into scoring position a few times. Next up, the class presentation and written summary of the project. Bring it on. Time for rest.

I will officially end this project with one last video. Enjoy.

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