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YouTubers Supporting Charity

YouTube has allowed millions of people to create content that will possibly reach an audience. For some YouTubers, creating content leads to an enormous amount of success, creating a massive following and giving them celebrity status. As a result, the past 10 years have seen a great increase in the number of online celebrities.

What these celebrities reveal is the power in social media. If top YouTuber PewDiePie, who posts comedy skits along with “Let’s Play” videos of games such as Grand Theft Auto V and The Witcher III, can have over 38 million subscribers to his channel, is YouTube not also a platform on which one can spread ideas to others?

PewDiePie thinks so. In 2013, the vlogger posted a video titled “10 MILLION BROS UNITE!-Charity: Water” on YouTube. In it, he challenged his subscribers (who at the time numbered 10 million) to support the efforts of nonprofit organization Charity: Water to promote access to clean water in the developing world. Along with launching an online campaign, PewDiePie agreed to donate one dollar to Charity: Water per every 500 views earned by the video. PewDiePie’s studio “Maker Studios” also agreed to donate one dollar per every 500 views on the video.

The campaign raised $446,462 for Charity: Water, becoming a huge success for the YouTuber. Perhaps even more great is the fact that PewDiePie is not the first YouTuber to promote making a difference.

For Lewis Brindley and Simon Lane, who form comedic gaming channel Yogscast, charity is part of what being entertainers is about. In December of each year, the team holds fundraising initiatives, streaming play-throughs of games and challenges to promote charity. Their most recent effort, titled “Jingle Jam,” raised over 1 million dollars for a variety of charities, including Oxfam International, Doctors Without Borders and End Polio Now.

Along with PewDiePie and Yogscast, YouTuber Connor Franta has taken advantage of the platform to promote social justice. Franta raised over $230,000 for The Thirst Project through crowdfunding platform Prizeo. To do this, Franta encouraged fans to enter a contest in which they donated to the charity, and the winner was given the opportunity to get coffee with Franta in Los Angeles.

The power of social media is the speed with which it allows us to spread ideas. For YouTube celebrities, using the platform that allowed them to achieve celebrity status to promote giving is perhaps the ultimate way to give back.

Andrew Michaels

Sources: PC Games N, Reason Digital, Huffington Post , Youtube 1, Youtube, Charity: Water
Photo: Youtube