The Unwinnable Battle of YouTube Rewind


Now YouTube’s most disliked video, 2018’s YouTube Rewind failed harder than ever before, even though its premise was that the fans were in control

YouTube Rewind is the annual highlight by YouTube to showcase all their creators and the videos they made and their accomplishments that year. Its peak was in 2011, but since then the fans and creators have become more and more frustrated with the results. This year was called YouTube Rewind 2018: Everyone Controls Rewind the entire video premise that the creators and fans of YouTube get to choose what is in the video. Clearly, the representation is inaccurate as it became the most disliked video ever in only eight days.

Justin Bieber’s “Baby” video held the title of most disliked video, reaching just under 10 million dislikes in about eight years. YouTube Rewind 2018 managed to reach 10 million dislikes in eight days. People are furious that they didn’t properly display the most popular videos that happened in 2018. Two large things that have the community mad was the lack of the Shane Dawson series that covered the mental state of Jake Paul, which got 145 million views in total, and PewDiePie was not invited to be in the video, even though he holds the number one spot for most subscribers. He has 75 million subscribers, and it’s pretty clear that he will be holding that number one title for a long time.

The video started with Will Smith, a mainstream celebrity who started a YouTube channel this year, describing what he would do if he controlled this year’s YouTube Rewind. Then it shifts to a lot of famous creators around a bonfire planning their dream Rewind. Then the fans “get control” by reading the comments and doing what they request. So why is the community furious about this video if it was supposedly everything they wanted?

The problem with making a video that is supposed to cover of all the YouTube platform in under 10 minutes is that people and major events are going to be missed. It is impossible to cover all the events that happened in a year, and there is also the fact that this is not just an English platform. Many countries and categories are usually overlooked.

Many of the biggest events this year were extremely controversial, so YouTube left them out. I think if YouTube had included the Logan Paul suicide forest video, people would be even angrier. People wanted Shane Dawson and his Jake Paul series to be covered, but Dawson has repeatedly said he declines offers from YouTube to attend events like Rewind and VidCon. Fans are angry over BTS, a Korean pop (K-pop) boy band’s video being featured as YouTube deleted 30 million views from their “Fake Love” music video. Although YouTube clearly made a lot of mistakes in this video, I think some of the things they did include deserved tribute.

This year included a lot of Asian representation, as well as non-English speaking channels. Gamers had a bigger presence in this video and for the first time, animated channels were featured. They also included memes from this year like ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response), Mason Ramsey (The Yodeling Kid), the Tin Foil Ball challenge, Mukbangs, and of course, Fortnite. They highlighted mental health as well as the amazing charities they have raised money for this year. Many famous YouTubers were featured, a few being Liza Koshy, The Sister Squad (James Charles, The Dolan Twins, Emma Chamberlain), Elle Mills, Casey Neistat, Safiya Nygaard, Molly Burke, Gabbie Hanna, Lele Pons, and The Try Guys.

Next year they will need to take more fan suggestions and bridge the gap between the creators and YouTube. But will they ever be able to get back to its peak in 2011 and make the whole platform happy? Probably not.