If you’re a content creator on YouTube and you don’t know who Ray William Johnson is then you’ve had to have been vlogging from your closet. For those of you that don’t do much more on YouTube than watch your (insert family member here) do mundane crap like school plays, recitals, birthday parties etc…, then it’s time to step out of the box and check out RWJ’s channel. The concept behind Ray’s channel is that he reviews viral videos. It’s pretty much as simple as that. Imagine stepping back in time to the late 80’s and watching Bob Saget doing America’s Funniest Home Videos. It’s pretty much just like that…..except a lot more entertaining, and no Bob Saget….thank God. Ray reviews 3 videos each week and he tosses in a lot of one liners and gags to keep you at the screen.
Why am I doing a blog about RWJ? Well, up until recently he was the number one subscribed content creator in the world, with over 8 million subscribers. Sitting in that position may bring fame and fortune via YouTube, but it also brings along a lot of haters and trolls. As a content creator myself I’ve been fortunate that I don’t get a lot of trolls. But my channel is still relatively small. I’m in the 3400 subscriber range. I get the occasional insult about my weight, but I always wonder what they think they are going to accomplish by calling me a Pillsbury Doughboy?? Do they think I’m not aware of my girth? It’s not like I went to bed last night built like a Greek God and woke up this morning looking like 350lbs of chewed bubblegum. I put a lot of time and effort to get here. Anyway, back to Ray. I know a lot of people that are content creators that talk a lot of shit about Ray. Let me address 3 of the biggest negative comments I hear about Ray….in no particular order of popularity.
1) “He’s not funny” – Well, comedy is selective. What you find to be the funniest, most hilarious thing you’ve ever seen, I might find it to be comparative to sticking a pencil in my eye, and vice versa. Just because you, or I, don’t think something is funny doesn’t mean that it isn’t. It just isn’t to you…or me. In my personal opinion Ray is funny. Granted, there are shows that aren’t as funny as others, but for the most part I don’t get through an episode without at least a giggle, and when he throws the black baby into the wall….I’m damn near in tears. As a content creator myself I wonder if he writes all his dialog or if his staff helps. I tend to think that he’s the biggest contributor though.
2) “He’s Gay” – Ok, first off, have you seen his girlfriend? The one he lives with? Pretty hot Asian chick. As you guys know, I’ve been living in Japan since 1991. I have a soft spot for Asian women….or should I say a hard spot? Regardless, Ray is not a homosexual. Even if he was, who gives a shit? What business is it of yours? What does he do on camera that oozes gayness? If he was gay, how would that change anything about what he does? But again, it falls back to “what business is it of anyone else?” and “who really gives a shit?”.
3) “He makes a living off of other people’s work” – This is the big one for me. In my opinion, if Ray was taking the videos and ONLY showing those videos, then yeah, he’s making money of them like Nike does with Chinese kids chained to tables. But Ray doesn’t do that. He shows small portions of 3 different videos and comments on them. His comments are usually a lot more fun than the videos he’s reviewing. In turn, if your video gets reviewed by Ray William Johnson then your video is going to explode. To add to that, if you actually are a content creator and have more stuff up on your channel then your channel will explode too. So you see, Ray may be using other people’s videos as his medium, but the people that made those videos get something in return. It’s not like Ray took their video and uploaded it to his channel and got all the views and revenue from it. All that traffic goes to the content creator, as do the rewards. To give you a good example, I watched Ray review a channel that features “How To Do Anything” and the video Ray showed was “How To Throw Your Socks On The Floor”. The video itself was hilarious, a hand holding a pair of socks reaches into view and drops the socks on the floor. Finished. Brilliant!! When Ray reviewed that video the channel had like 1,500 subscribers. I kept tabs on it. Overnight that channel gained about 20,000 subscribers and the total views were through the roof. That guy definitely stepped into the big leagues as a result of Ray’s review. I just went and checked that channel. As of this writing that channel has 61,000 + subscribers and over 10 million video views. Fantastic!!! Content creators need to recognize what Ray has done for a lot of channels out there.
Anyway, my take on the hate for Ray William Johnson is that it boils down to a lot of envy for a guy that had an idea, ran with it, and became successful. Don’t hate on the guy because he got to it before you did. A lot of people starting out on YouTube think they are going to have instant success and make a living off of it. It doesn’t work like that. It takes a lot of time, talent, effort, and luck. See some of the behind the scenes stuff from =3 and you’ll see that they take almost an entire day just to shoot a 5 minute video. He’s not just walking in there, telling a few jokes, and uploading to YouTube. There is a LOT of work put into those episodes. Hell, my ThingzThatSuck videos are basically one minute videos, with no dialog, and one of those is easily 3 or 4 hours work for me. Add the time of coming up with the idea, working out the shots in my head etc… and there’s a half a day’s work right there for 60 seconds of video. And at this point in my YT career the payoff is minimal. A couple hundred views and it’s history. If I was in this for the money or fame I would have already driven off a cliff. I do this because I enjoy doing it. I’m content with my 500 views and socializing in the comments with my viewers. A shout from Ray wouldn’t upset me though. hahaha!!!
Y’all come back! I’ll leave the light on for ya!