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The YouTube Laugh Factory: A Studio System for Viral Videos

Wired profiles how YouTube content creators have turned viral videos into a lucrative business model. From the article, “It’s a truly peer-to-peer vision for TV, a future in which individual creators cultivate their own audience and are compensated for it. Many partners actually feel a bit spooked by their outrageously good fortune, wondering whether YouTube is a bubble that might burst. A year or two or three ago they were posting videos for fun, just fooling around on the computer, and now Google is sending them checks that cover the grocery bills, the rent, and in some cases much more. So they build out their brands, ensuring that their real capital, their fans, will still be able to find them elsewhere if the site somehow falls apart.”

Read it in full here.