The online giant is on pace to eclipse television.
YouTube began tracking how long people are watching their videos a few years ago, and the viewership has just passed an impressive number. Google reports a ten-fold increase in YouTube’s views since 2012, with people worldwide settling in for an immense one billion hours of online videos every single day. That would take you about 100,000 years to watch by yourself.
Among the metrics YouTube has been tracking is also which devices are being used, and about 50% of those views come from mobile devices. Another curious metric is that auto-captioned video views ticked past a billion this week as well.
As YouTube matures as a platform, we’re seeing the content diversify and mature. These days, high quality productions, with studios and professional camera work are becoming more common place and offer reliable and tailored content that television just can’t keep up with. They also offer freedom for the creators to work without anyone holding their leash. This is one reason, for example, why political talk show host Dave Rubin decided to cut ties with the television studio that had previously hosted him, and air his show, The Rubin Report, exclusively on YouTube, self funding from ad revenue and Patreon. So whether you want to watch political debate, nature shows, workshop engineering, or just plain old YouTube gaming, there’s more reason than ever to turn away from the tv.
This of course, is also beginning to hurt traditional media. News agencies are seeing record-low reader/viewerships, falling profits, and falling trust from the public. A Gallup pole from 2015 shows that in the preceding 15 years, trust in the media among 18 to 49-year-olds has fallen from 55% to 36%, and a separate Pew study found that US newspaper revenue has fallen from 46.1 billion dollars in 2003 to just 19.9 billion in 2014. Perhaps this plays a roll into why we’re now seeing so much news content hidden behind paywalls, and respectable news-outlets doing attack pieces on online celebrities like the one which recently accused the most popular YouTuber, PewDiePie, of being a nazi.