YouTube has somehow managed to steal the spotlight away from the PewDiePie vs T-Series subscriber war by releasing the most disliked video (ever) on its own platform.
It took eight years for Canadian pop star Justin Bieber's hated hit track, Baby, to get to 9.8 million dislikes. YouTube needed only six days to beat Biebs and achieve the record number of thumbs down from millions of upset content creators and fans across the globe. At the time of writing this, YouTube Rewind has been disliked over 10 million times.
The annual YouTube recap, which highlights the musical and cultural events that define the year, has been around since 2011.
So what went so wrong for YouTube in 2018?
Going by the Reddit threads, YouTube comments, tweets, and general commentary on the Internet, we've compiled a few factors that contributed to perhaps the biggest faux-pas that the platform has experienced since its inception.
YouTube got the basics wrong. The video giant was accused of making a "politically correct" and "advertiser-friendly" video.
The platform distanced itself from old-school YouTubers such as PewDiePie, Shane Dawson, Jacksepticeye, Smosh, Jacksfilms, Vsauce, Logan Paul, Mr Beast (the list goes on); all creators who pull in a major chunk of viewers to the website were excluded. A comment that reads, "Wait...who are these people?" pretty much sums up this year's rewind.
The PewDiePie vs T-Series subscriber war, which has had the entire Internet hooked for months, got no mention. Elsewhere, the news of a Noida-based music label T-Series, which was set to dethrone the Swedish gamer, united fellow YouTubers.Popular YouTuber Mr Beast bought a bunch of billboards in North Carolina and turned them into advertisements asking people to subscribe to PewDiePie. Then, another YouTuber Justin Roberts bought a billboard apparently worth a million dollars in New York’s Times Square for the same cause.
Musician and YouTuber Davie504 played PewDiePie's diss track on his guitar for 10 hours. When it looked like it was all over for Pewds, YouTube stars Markiplier and Jacksepticeye stepped in and gave a much-needed push of almost a million subscribers under 48 hours.
Even Logan Paul, who isn't in very good terms with Pewds, extended a helping hand.
Also, no mention was made of Logan Pauls' notorious Japan vlog, which kicked off a global controversy after he posted a video that showed him and his friends laughing about an actual corpse they filmed, hanging from a tree in Japan’s “suicide forest,” back in January.
Logan Paul's boxing match with KSI, Jake Paul's match with Deji, legend Stan Lee's departure, the great Laurel-Yanny debate, surgery on grape meme were all left out too.
Oh, did we mention the needless plug of massively popular game Fortnite or 'YouTuber' Will Smith's wasted cameo? Or the K-pop fans outraging over the fact that the video mentioned the genre, but BTS was conveniently ignored?
Marques Brownlee, popular tech video producer, who actually was a part of 2018 Rewind spoke at lengths how the website got it all wrong.
The “problem” with YouTube Rewind is pretty simple, actually - the delta between what creators/audiences expect and what YouTube wants to show has never been more clear.— Marques Brownlee (@MKBHD) December 10, 2018
YouTube tries to blend the two ideas, which results in this cringey, chaotic, super PC video that leaves out a lot of the stuff creators love and advertisers don’t.Pretty good read on everything by @verge: https://t.co/8gt88O46AS pic.twitter.com/D8xZIYsUie— Marques Brownlee (@MKBHD) December 10, 2018
He even released an 11-minute video explaining what YouTube was trying to do and what it eventually ended up doing.
The only redeeming factor of this year's rewind was the surprise inclusion of animators, something that has been missing in the previous rewinds. JaidenAnimations represent! Thanks to Jaiden, some PewDiePie fans rejoiced at the fact that his $399 chair made it to the video.
With so much outrage around the video, some content creators took the effort to make alternate versions of YouTube Rewind and people are loving them.
TL;DR This year's YouTube Rewind was a cringe-fest and people are happy that it is the most disliked video to exist on the website.