Conducting interviews with YouTubers at the Collective VidCon Party at the House of Blues in Anaheim was like being a fly on the wall of Napoleon’s tent — battle plans for the coming days were being hashed out, discussed, abandoned and remade. Around us, YouTubers, many from the stables of the Collective, such as Harley Morenstein and Lucas Cruikshank (aka Fred), were mingling it up with other creators strategizing how to get the most out of their time at VidCon. To borrow them from their socializing and put a microphone to their face was to hear the excitement of innovators and personalities, eager to connect with their fans and speak on panels and hold discourses on the nature — and future — of this business we are all collectively in. And by God, if you are going to strategize VidCon, the Collective Party, co-hosted by NewMediaRockstars, was easily the most exciting and classy place you could conceivably do it.
Set against the backdrop of the family-friendly atmosphere of Downtown Disney, I kept one eye firmly on the party, staring agog at who was going to show up next (Grace Helbig! Ian from Smosh!), and the other eye was scanning down from the House of Blues terrace, on the lookout for the costumed characters from the movie “Toy Story.” Legend has it (I learned that night from a handsome partygoer whose wife seemed to be dressed as some sort of witch), if you yell “Andy’s coming,” the performers, in their Buzz and Woody costumes, will drop to the ground lifeless, like proper toys. Only in Southern California, at an industry party of epic proportions can you have such a visual carnival of engaging whimsy and spectacle. I never did get to yell “Andy’s coming” from that balcony, but I did, along with my lovely NMR co-interviewer, get to speak to some of the best and the brightest in the YouTube game. You throw a terrific party, Collective.
Of course here’s more of NMR’s VidCon coverage: