Big Frame Manifesto Distances Company From ‘Unethical’ YouTube Network Practices

Big Frame from L to R: Head of Talent & Co-Founder Sarah Penna, CEO & Co-Founder Steve Raymond

It seems at some point in their development, every new industry goes through what can most politely be called a “labor dispute.” Many of these disputes are violent and bloody, as “the little guy” fights for humane conditions and a serviceable wage against more financially-powerful bullies and strikebreakers. Somewhat less often, these labor disputes involve singing, dancing newsboys. Now it is time for new media to deal with their own “workers versus managers” issues. And Big Frame just drew a line in the sand.Big Frame, a media company specializing in marketing and production for some of the biggest YouTube innovators out there, could most aptly be described as a company working in the grey. While looking out for their stables of talent, they are also, by definition, on the side of the managers. As the Ray William Johnson-versus-Maker fiasco publicly unfolds and everyone picks sides, you’d expect Big Frame to align with the suits. But via a new post on their website from company heads Steve Raymond and Sarah Penna, one gets the idea that this new-media world of ours doesn’t have to be so bleak. How Jerry Maguire of them.

Without being so naked as to say, “Here is what the other companies are doing wrong, and here is why we are great,” Big Frame has cast a wider net and made the plea for a complete industry-wide revision of practices. It is a brave move during a time when they could be making mad talent grabs to beef up their roster. Of course, there is also certain long-term value in being the one who shines the beacon on the problem.

Titling their mission statement “A Challenge to YouTube Multi-Channel Networks,” Big Frame asks that the production houses “slow down,” “be transparent,” and don’t focus so much on the bottom line that is “views.” All indications point toward something better ahead if the managers and the creators work together to create a stronger, more sustainable ecosystem. And while they don’t lay out the specific problem companies and/or creators, the timeliness of the release speaks volumes.

In regards to YouTube and the worldwide web at large, I think there are no boundaries on what can be achieved (except maybe making Pets.com a viable commodity). It is important to build the infrastructure of this economy right. Persia, Rome, Greece and others found out the hard way that their worlds, while opulent, were not built to last. This enlightened age is going to take a lot of compromise, cool heads and big picture thinkers on both sides. I think Big Frame is right. But I’m not the one they’ve got to convince.

The Big Frame post in full: