Although it entertains millions of people online through platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, Twitch, YouTube, etc., the world of online creators is still not officially recognized by old school Hollywood. “There are Emmys, Golden Globes and Oscars for the mainstream entertainment industry,” said Adam Rose, a TikTok creator with more than 4.3 million followers, “but the people in this room entertain more people around the world than those nominated for these other awards.
The size of the creator economy is measured in the billions. YouTube has announced that it has paid out more than $30 billion to creators between 2019 and 2021, and some of the internet’s biggest stars earn tens of millions of dollars a year. MrBeast, one of the most successful content creators, earned over $54 million in 2021 alone.
On Sunday night, the star power was palpable. Fans pressed their faces and phones against the windows of the Beverly Hilton hotel in hopes of catching a glimpse of the designers as they walked the red carpet.
“You have TikTokers YouTubers, Snapchat original creators, Instagrammers, it’s an incredibly wide range of platforms that make or break internet entertainment,” said Sidney Raz, a creator whose life hacks for thirties exploded on TikTok and Instagram. . “It’s great to have an award show for all the hard work and creativity we put out on the internet every day.”
The awards show itself was produced by Tubefilter and Dick Clark Productions, and streamed exclusively on YouTube. Content creator Airrack hosted the event and streamed it on its own channel. Rapper Yung Gravy performed as a musical guest.
“Thank you all for coming out tonight and leaving your ring lights at home,” he said as he took the stage.
The talent honored at this year’s Streamys showed just how cross-platform the creator ecosystem has become. TikTok queen Charli D’Amelio has won the award for best lifestyle creator. Twitch star Kai Cena has won the streamer award. YouTuber Markiplier won the Longtime Gamer award in addition to the Best Scripted Series award. Hasan Piker won the award for Best News Creator.
The Streamy Award for Best Breakout Creator is coveted among influencers. Stars who have won it in the past, including Bella Poarch, Charli D’Amelio, MrBeast, Emma Chamberlain and Liza Koshy, have become Internet A-listers and this year Ryan Trahan, 24, took home the award. .
Trahan has made a name for himself racking up tens of millions of views for things like inviting 100 celebrities to his birthday party, spending 50 hours in the dark, and trying to trade a penny for a house in less than a week.
Simone Giertz, a science YouTuber with 2.7 million subscribers, said this year’s Streamys felt more established than previous years. It’s no longer seen as something just for teenagers, she explained. “It’s much more adult than a few years ago,” she said. “Before, it was just a bunch of teenagers in their bedrooms taking selfies. I haven’t seen a single person take a selfie yet. We’re all growing up.
The TikTok stars of the nursing home, a content house whose members are aged 70 to 85, are new to internet fame but were seated up front among influencers decades younger than them for the broadcast. Other creators who took the stage on Sunday night spent their formative years in the public eye. Rhett James McLaughlin and Charles Lincoln “Link” Neal, a content-creating duo known professionally as Rhett & Link, are both in their 40s but have been stars on YouTube since 2006.
Ben Relles, a former YouTube executive who has attended every Streamy Awards since the first in 2009, said he was most impressed with Rhett and Link “who, after 15 years of creativity on YouTube, still win the show of the year and had Streamy’s Funniest Moment (The duo had audiences cracking up a bit over a lengthy intro at the shorthand content award).
Caleb Marshall, a fitness pop star who looks like the Richard Simmons of the internet, was on hand with his two dancers and fitness instructors Haley Jordan and Allison Florea. Marshall said the impact of the pandemic, combined with the rise of short form video, has led to changes in the industry. “The beauty and production standards that have been set over so many years have been shattered,” he said.
And more people than ever are connecting to creators online. “People wanted a connection,” Florea said, “and they found it through us and others like us.”
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