Following a decade of hits and disappointments on the site, YouTube officially canceled the YouTube Rewind video series. The Rewind concept has evolved, from confused gamers to bizarre celebrity visits. But it has attracted a lot of anger and ridicule in recent years. YouTube Rewind: A Year in Review, launched in 2010 by the popular video-sharing website, was the company’s first official annual look-back. Rewind was a clear prescription for success and a positive appraisal of the platform’s huge range of content, with a simple Top 10 list format of the most popular uploads of the year.
Rewind quickly become a yearly tradition for the site. While the site grew in popularity in the social zeitgeist, YouTube modified the model in 2012. Thereby, incorporating lavish appearances from the platform’s most known content providers. From gamers to vloggers to makeup artists, as the mini-movies merged the year’s top music and trends. For several years, this strategy worked well, but YouTube’s slightly utopian image of its service drew increasing criticism.
This culminated in the infamous 2018 YouTube Rewind, in which Will Smith told viewers how much he enjoyed playing Fortnite before an odd group of creators began awkwardly replicating memes and praising people for using their voice in a way that many saw as insincere, sanitized, and all-around out-of-touch. YouTube Rewind became a target of ridicule. People accusing the corporation of being “cringe” and hand-picking producers deemed to be the most family-friendly on YouTube; while eliminating some of the most popular channels.
Youtube Rewind canceled but will leave a void
After a rocky few years, a YouTube official has confirmed the series has been canceled until further notice, according to Game Rant. Rewind 2018 went on to become YouTube’s most disliked video of all time. Thereby, prompting the company to scramble for a new path, first publishing a less-extravagant list video in 2019. Then dropping Rewind entirely in 2020 due to the global crisis. According to the site, YouTube Rewind will no longer be a star-studded production montage. The corporation will transfer its focus elsewhere beginning in 2021, implying some sort of participatory event instead.
Rewind has provided users with a great deal of fun throughout the years. While it became a target of ridicule and contempt in its final version, many people will be disappointed to see the annual event end. In recent years, some disaffected channels have begun to upload their versions of Rewind to compete with the more corporate, official version. Thereby, arguing that their Rewinds are more faithful to the spirit of celebration. They do not shy away from contentious creators and trends. YouTube acknowledged the unauthorized retrospectives and stated that it will continue to support them (though not through sponsorship). But that it will take a back seat as it searches for a new medium to explore.
Some will be relieved to no longer have to sit through celebrities doing Fortnite dances and content creators self-praising one another around a campfire. The fun tradition will undoubtedly leave a void on the popular site. But it may open the door for more independent creators to celebrate their achievements yearly in a way that represents them, rather than in a way that represents the popular site. For the time being, we don’t know what YouTube has planned for the future.
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