Brown County High School students have a wide range of interests when it comes to content. This content students watch, share, and indulge in during their free time, but what exactly are BCHS students watching on YouTube in their free time? A poll was recently conducted by the staff of Talon and Shadows to examine this very question. The poll asked simple questions such as, how much time do students spend on YouTube per day, and preferred topics to view. The purpose of this survey was to get an idea of the types of content students watch on YouTube. The results were interesting, especially as students return from summer break.
First, students were asked how many hours they spend watching content on Youtube. It is apparent the majority of students stated they spend less than an hour a day watching YouTube videos. It would have been interesting to see how students responded during quarantine and summer break. The final question asked how students feel about Youtube. Several Eagles indicated that it was a welcomed distraction when there is nothing better to do. One interesting quote came from BCHS Sophomore, Byron Spivy. He stated, “I do think YouTube could be expanded upon for learning, especially because I feel like I am on there longer when doing research.” This quote opens a whole new mindset when viewing how people watch content on YouTube. It demonstrates how some BCHS students see YouTube as a form of recreation. Others see it as a way for kids to expand upon their learning and a source of knowledge. Perhaps in the future, teachers will expand the use of YouTube as a learning tool for remote and in person education.
Content of interest (BCHS student responses)
The second question focused on looking at what specific genre/ topics students find most interesting when looking for content. The most popular type of content students view is gaming. This becomes more interesting when you break the votes down. Female respondents seemed to favor makeup and music, while male students seemed to favor gaming and commentary/podcasts. This makes sense as that content is targeted towards their age demographic, and the type of content they view. Female students responded they make use of tutorials. Male students stated how viewing gaming on YouTube improves their gameplay. Band member and trumpet player, Sophomore Henry Himebaugh states that, “Content is more gender based today, with videos and YouTube creators entirely.” Content creators are looking to expand “likes,” clicks, and subscriptions to their channel to get to that all important advertising money on YouTube.
YouTube is such a huge platform that affects our school in so many ways. The average person might not see it at first. Trending topics, popular activities, games, fashion, controversy, they all can be found on YouTube. Whether students see YouTube as a source of distraction, or as a source for research, content impacts students in a profound way. The power of YouTube is undeniable in general, regardless of age. This is why it will continue to be a source of viral videos, and a form of social communication for many years to come.