We’ve mentioned a couple (million) times that YouTube is probably the future of entertainment. You’re here reading this so you’re probably thinking “duh!” Well, we’re excited to learn that a Dutch television production company seems to get it too. The company, NewBeTV, is developing a new type of sketch comedy show, and they’re enlisting YouTubers to help them do it.
The show is called “The Donuts” and it’s a typical variety show in format, except for one critical difference. Every sketch is produced by a different YouTube creator based on a theme or challenge issued by the production company. The individual clips are then edited together to create the show. However, the YouTubers receive a producer credit and retain all the online rights to their work. That means that a popular clip from the show still belongs to its creator online and can be monetized on their personal channels. The YouTubers will also receive a production fee in exchange for their work. As production models go, it’s definitely new, but could it be the future of television?
The show takes advantage of the relatively quick turn-around time for YouTube production as well as the deep well of untapped talent available on the platform. NewBeTV worked hard to recruit a diverse group of YouTubers to contribute to the program. While some, like the pranksters of US-based channel Whatever have 1.8 million subscribers, others have fewer than 2,000. The team also spans the world with YouTubers based in the United States, Europe and even SQUASHfilms from Japan.
Recently there have been a handful of attempts to bring YouTubers to television. Usually what that means is taking a successful YouTube creator and giving them the means to make a traditional television show. Shane Dawson is coming to television with a workplace sitcom, while Grace Helbig will jump to TV this fall with a talk show. “The Donuts,” however, may be the closest thing we’ve seen to actually bringing the YouTube experience itself to TV. The show utilizes challenges, consists of unrelated sketches, and integrates creators and contents from all over the world. That’s as close to YouTube as television has ever come.
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