Ouch. The Fine Line Between “Storytelling” and Inauthenticity

trippy.jpgOnline-video has rules, and I’ve broken one. And I don’t care.  

A while back two YouTubers (myself and CharlesTrippy) did a fake feud on YouTube that created something of a backlash. Our loyal subscribers were outraged that Charles and I would give out each other’s cell phones to torment the other (see Charles’ video, then my fake response). So they came to our defense, and two Trippy fans even came to my house and assaulted me. Naturally, the cell numbers were fake and directed callers to a “Rejection Hotline.” Few understood this, however, because they didn’t call the numbers. I had to apologize and Trippy even renamed his video to disclaim it as a joke.

renetto-nalts-hair.jpgLike a dog returning to his vomit, I’ve done another fictional series where I pretend to stalk Renetto(one of the more prominent YouTubers) to seek advice on becoming a YouTube celebrity. Paul Robinett and I taped these early last Friday when I found out he was going to be in Baltimore- a short drive from me.

Renetto also made his own primer to these, in which he teases his audience with news that Nalts (me) is stalking him. He then “book ends”the series by showing himself restless and depressed because of the events, and his father lamenting him for affiliating with Nalts. His dad even demanded I take the videos down- which I actually fell for.

So what’s the point of my sharing this YouTube drama with you, dear WillVideoforFood readers?

It brings up an interesting sociological issue about online videos. Is fiction allowed? Not according to many of the hundreds of comments. Said one: “I thought you were honest, Nalts. I’m unsubscribing.”

As I’m reminded, YouTube is not just a video-distribution channel, it’s a community.

tencommandments2.jpgLike any communities, there are rules established by the democracy. Renetto’s lure is that he stirs the community’s pot by setting such rules as “thow shall not post on LiveVideo.” In the video, he raises questions about loyalty among YouTube creators that post elsewhere. He also provoked people by asking “why aren’t there more black people on YouTube.”

One rule the community established is that authenticity is a requirement. I reject that rule. Many of my videos involve fiction, and even “tricking” the viewer for a surprise effect. For example, Google Buttcrack is clearly fiction. And I didn’t get run over by a car when I hid in a trashcan.

And many of my videos are essentially bedtime stories. Make believe. I don’t disclaim them as such, because that would be awkward and would break the suspension of belief.

I do support honesty in videos to the extent that I typically “debrief” the gag. For example, I’m editing a “behind the scenes” video of the Renetto/Nalts shaved-head series. And I believe we especially have to be transparent if we’re doing a video that is sponsored by someone (fortunately my sponsors have always agreed).

But what’s wrong with drama and fiction? Doesn’t storytelling have as much of a place in online video as it does in every other medium? I’m especially interested in those of you who may have an opposing viewpoint. I’d like to understand this more.

50 Replies to “Ouch. The Fine Line Between “Storytelling” and Inauthenticity”

  1. Yes, fact and fiction are often hard to differentiate. Gags like these are a bit obvious, especially when we start to see grown men running around your yard, pretending to beat you up. And any viewers that have followed you for a bit know you have a zany, slap-stick side that tends to creep into your videos.

    If they can’t take a joke, maybe you don’t want them as subscribers.

  2. I actually had this discussion in a Fiction Writing class I took. Now I know it isn’t dealing with fictional videos but it’s pretty much the same really. Instead of writing fiction for people to read you’re filming it for people to see.

    Anyway, some kids in the class complained that we were doing too much fiction stuff(I still don’t get that one…it was a damn fiction class). We pretty much were divided on the topic. The fiction kids, me included, felt there was nothing wrong with fiction since it’s a way for people to zone out of their actual lives. No one has a perfect life so writing/reading/viewing fiction is a great way to relax and forget about the annoying daily stuff we all go through. It’s the reason people watch TV, it’s entertainment.

    The non-fiction kids thought different. They felt real life was more important because it was what everyone was going through so it should be regarded as more important. Those non-fiction kids were whacked out of their minds if you ask me.

    I see nothing wrong with causing a little fake drama here and there in videos. Without storytelling many online videos would be boring as fucking hell.

  3. I don’t know if this is an opposing view, but I think you might be dancing around a bigger issue, online ethics. A huge topic like that would need a bulletin board for discussion.

    This is youtube, so the question is, are there any ethics and standards at all that aren’t either arbitrary or made up on the spot? As Chad or Steve might say, “I’ll get to it when I get to it, ITMT pass me the misplaced plant.”

    I think you’re pretty upfront with your videos, any person watching a few can see it’s clear that you’re a prankster. So in-between that blurry line of commentary and funny I don’t know how much more of a disclaimer you need. Your channel says Comedy. Maybe you should have Charlie spell it out and use it as your youtube wallpaper?

    I don’t think your intentions are malice, nor do I think you take advantage of the window that’s so easy to hide behind . After each video anyone reading the comments with an IQ level just above normal should be able to put it together. Your connection and the replies to your audience is greatly appreciated and keeps those sort of things on track.But I suppose you could put a disclaimer web page together with a single video that spells it out for people who don’t like to read.

    That being said, the comment about the subscriber who unsubscribed… I wonder, in this fast paced online world if this is no different than the guy who likes to post the two raised ansi middle fingers every few lines. On Renetto’s comments people say they are going to unsubscribe all the time, they subscribe to him just to unsubscribe to him. He seems to attract that, and for him may be part of the thrill. There’s no lack of haters on youtube and a good number of angry and unstable people. I’m pretty sure it’s a major component to getting on the A List. Perhaps IRL, a reason people developed gated communities.

    You’ve built a nice corner on youtube and you have some very loyal and some very talented supporter who genuinely cheer you on, to renetto’s envy I’m sure. It’s hard to meet everyone’s expectations and this medium can play a lot of tricks in people‘s minds that make them or allows them to say odd things. It’s a genuine phenomenon.

  4. A large majority of my videos are fictionary. Made up to add that bit of interestingness (‘(c) flickr’). Everyone beileves what you say, I said I was having a devorce with a 15 year old living over in ameria, but of cause I had only just met her, it was illegal for her to marry, I’ve never lived in amera and visa versa. I’ve also told everyone that I lived in south africa, I have no accent, it rains alot. I’ve now told my subscribers (well twish has) that twish is my mad next door neighbor. In reality we;ve never met and she lives 10’s of miles away.

    Humans have an inbuilt ‘impulse’ for drama. Provide it and people love it.

  5. There is a very fine line between what is reality and what could be reality when you’re playing yourself as a character in a video.

    Although this series of videos was clearly fiction, depending on your perception of who Renetto and Nalts is, you may not pick the obvious cues that neither of you were quite being your true selves. Thus you rattle of a comment believing something to be true, then look like a fool later because you didn’t understand the joke. People don’t like to be made to look like fools.

    Looking at Renetto’s prelude to your videos where he harasses the girl on the plane, Renetto walks an even finer line between reality and fiction. Until he posted the behind the scenes clip of making that video I was never 100% sure if that was a set up or if that was Renetto being himself. It’s easy to imagine him doing something like that because he has a very outgoing personality and he’s not afraid to talk to complete strangers as part of his videos.

    Perhaps a disclaimer at the end of each video stating that what you have just watched is fiction but… don’t bother – people wouldn’t talk about your videos nearly as much if all of them knew it was a joke.

    Even if you’re offended by a Nalts or Renetto video you’re going to watch the next one just to see if you’re still offended. Right?

  6. I too had a hard time determining whether renetto’s first video was a joke or not. I never really know when he’s serious or not, which in my view is a fatal weakness to his humor. Remedy? I don’t watch his videos! Novel concept, huh!

    After your first video, I still wasn’t 100% sure it was a joke, but felt like such an idiot i didn’t want to reveal that in my comments. Of course, the second he started shaving your head in the second video, I knew it was a joke (and your best one ever, I must say). So for me, it was worth the ambiguity in the first one to wait and see the punchline in the second (although you made us wait way too long in my opinion — I was DYING all day Sunday to see it!)

    Anyone who knows your work knows that you fabricate scenarios all the time, so anyone getting pissed off because this series was “fake” is an idiot. They’re not a true nalts fan, have never been, and never will be. So fuck ’em, I say.

  7. I thought the purpose of your videos was to entertain. If by the end it made me laugh who gives a flying flip? Steer clear of those that would abandon reason for a little bit of fake outrage.

  8. It seems to me that for fiction to really work there has to be a genuine subtext running through it, one that we can identify with on some level. I’m no deconstructionist, just a bum, but what was the subtext running through your Renetto videos? Let’s see: maybe that a person has to be a fool to try to emulate someone else’s popularity? Oh, a lot of Youtubers are going to be disturbed by THAT message.

    I was faked out by Renetto’s ‘stalker’ video because I already don’t like him and am predisposed to believing anything negative about him. As TET said above: people don’t like to be made out to be fools. Now I don’t like him more, because now I know that he can trick me. This is actually untrue. Or is it? Maybe seeing this playful side of Renetto has made him more human to me. I am a long time subscriber to Renetto’s videos because I don’t watch them. I comment on him all the time because I don’t have the faintest idea who he is.

    Are you getting the subtext here?

  9. Two points Nalts:

    1. People are idiots. People on YouTube more so.
    2. It’s all about context (IMHO) What relationship do you have with your viewers? Are you prepared for a backlash against decisions you might make?

    If you had established yourself as an honest videoblogger then it came out you had set up your viewers for fun or profit without adequately preparing them for the fiction/joke then I think you’d deserve whatever backlash you got.

    If you set yourself up as a comedic/entertaining/fictional video maker and the audience was too stupid to pick up on the joke, that’s hardly your fault. If you try to manage your work by committee you’ll drive yourself stark staring mad and feel unfulfilled in your work as well.

    PS You look like a serial kiler with a bald head and Renetto glasses. I mean that in a good way.

  10. what I want to know is when did you commit to letting him “shaven” your head?

    was that always in play or a last minute idea?

    did WON know, or say, “You better not come home bald Mister!”

    I always thought that if you shave hair it grows back thicker, is that not true?

    btw, I’ve never been fooled by Renetto, I just don’t think he’s that convincing. Maybe it’s because there’s something about him I don’t trust, yet I really want to like the guy, sorta. WAIT, I know what it is, it’s that self-congratulatory attitude he harbors. Hard to be humble and then pat yourself on the back at the same time. But there’s always that old saying, ’We find fault in other what we like least in ourselves.’
    Do I do that? Wasn’t that a smart thing to say 😉

    Nalts almost got me with the Trippy phone number deal. I have to say honestly, when you said two can play at that game and then pulled out the number my heart sank just a little. It was like dropping an ice cream cone. I thought, aren’t there any good guys left? This is so petty. Here’s this nice guy, with a great huge family and a really really responsible job and wait a minute! ahhhhhahaha He Got Me! That was so cool! And now I know what’s it must be like to be bi-polar.

    If Renetto had done that, I would have believed the number was really Trippys and then started to wonder how many people would call.

    I guess it’s just the type of atmosphere a person creates with their videos. There’s a mix of one personality in every creation, even when it’s a joke. I think what a good number of active vloging youtubers, “the community” are looking for is real and as real as real can get. What some of those folks fail to get is that youtube is for anything and everything. Except porn and copyrighted material 😉

    oops! long again…

  11. BOTTOM LINE: People go to YouTube for entertainment. Whether it’s “reality” (Trippy and other vloggers), a “fictional series” (lonelygirl15 or gootubeconspiracy), sports highlights (ESPN), “candid camera” (a la Spencer farting), or a spoof, there is ONLY ONE RULE: It has to be entertaining.

    Although somewhat disturbing to watch, the Renetto/Nalts videos were *certainly* entertaining – a lot more entertaining than anything Renetto has done in the past.

  12. um… hey WoodBlockDoll… have you seen most of the stuff on YouTube? I think 99% of the contributors are violating your one rule.

  13. PC,

    So is there any wonder why Nalts is almost always among the “Most Watched,” and is rocketing up the list of “Most Subscribed”?? The cream always rises to the top. :))

  14. true… although in a cesspool, the lightest crap rises to the top as well… sometimes i can’t tell the difference on YT.

    (sorry, can’t kiss the nalts butt too much, he’s shaving on the wrong end, if you catch my drift)

  15. Honestly, I can’t believe this is an issue, for you or some of your dear subscribers.

    If I want news, I’ll watch the news. If I want a documentary or biography, I know where to find them. Opinion and commentary I can find elsewhere. I go to youtube to be entertained, especially if I’m watching a channel labeled “comedy”.

    Nalts, I love your videos (and wifeofnalts), appreciate your humor and skill, and am always entertained. Especially the renetto videos.

    Please, keep them coming.

  16. i’d be interested to know the number of views you have vs. the number of people who posted negative comments that indicated you broke some set of unwritten rules.

    we can pretend youtube and general internet communities are democracies, but the people making the rules aren’t elected, they’re self-appointed. so really the rules you’re talking about are the reactions of a mini-society, not a set of abiding laws. transgression probably gets you more attention thus more subscribers thus better ratings and higher ranking.

    the only real set of rules you have to abide by are the terms of service of the site where you post and the only reason you have to abide by them is that the site can block/blackball you. after a bit of pressure, they probably won’t protect you if you break the law, either.

    for the dopes who unsubscribe because they felt violated that some dork on the internet posted something that wasn’t 100% true and you didn’t call them personally and tell them so… well, they’re too busy buying timeshares with the money they were promised from nigerian bankers to really have much affect on your numbers anyway.

  17. You know, this issue troubles me the most when it comes to online videos. Most of my videos consist of me playing a character. I use my real name, but I’m often a character. I stretch the truth all of the time for entertainment purposes. I also really enjoy it when I trick people into believing something I filmed was real. But I’m conflicted because I don’t want to be labeled a liar. I just want to be an entertainer. It is so frustrating.

    I think the fakeness of videos can be broken down into five levels. Some of them overlap, but whatever…

    Completely True – Maybe personal blogs, DIY, Howto…you know, the type of videos that try to genuinely convey something true.

    Total Fiction – This is reserved for skits, series, webisodes, etc. To me, they are obviously fiction, but I bet there is a minority of people who just don’t understand.

    Hamming it Up for the Camera – I do this all of the time. These are true videos. I’m being real, but I’m obviously just overacting or just acting silly for entertainment’s sake. I’m not necessarily saying false things, but I am acting a tad bit different than I normally act.

    Mixing Fact and Fiction – I do this all of the time too. I’ll be in real situations, but I’ll completely tell a different story than what is really going on, or I’ll act like a totally different character. Or I’ll tell a joke that I believe should be obviously a joke, but sometimes not everyone gets it. Or sometimes parts are even scripted. Basically a decent mix of the first two levels.

    Deceiving on Purpose – I do this occasionally. I expect my true fans to know I am essentially pranking the audience, but I genuinely want strangers or new viewers to fall for it. Sometimes I feel bad for doing this, but I justify it by including obvious hints that it is fake or telling the people outside of the video that it is fake. I usually get lots of negative comments and/or mail because of these videos, because I often make myself look like a horrible person.

    Now the reason that the latter two can be frustrating is because there is no way I can let everyone know that what I’m doing is acting or fake. So essentially, I have just outright lied to about half of the people who have seen it. I could conceivably fill someone with hate or rage or just cause them to feel bad for the rest of the day after they see my videos. So it is very tough for me to continue to do these types of videos, but I still do them because at least half of my audience gets it.

    This will never get approved if I paste a ton of links, but here are videos that I have done for each category I listed. Just do a YouTube search:

    Completely True: Otto the Trash Cat, Bottle Feeding Kittens, many of my pet videos. – Basically I’m just filming what happens.

    Total Fiction: A Very Special Valentine, Mentos Gremlins Parody – These are totally scripted, but sometimes they appear to be true.

    Hamming it up for the Camera: Guitar Hero, The Ice Storm – I really did those things, but I’m being a bit more silly or daring than normal.

    Mixing Fact and Fiction: Ruined Videos, Drinking Inspiration (Nalts), The Car Wash – Probably my favorite genre of fakeness.

    Deceiving on Purpose: Basically my entire Tales of “Truth” series including My First Time, My Worst Date, etc. I tell these as if they are real, and they are for a contest that is supposed to be real, so I’m obviously tricking people who don’t follow or know me. Only about half of the people even knew they were fake. I still get lots of negative comments and email about these videos, because people actually believe I’m an evil bastard. But to my credit, the stories are so outlandish that how can people believe them? Also, they are all labeled Tales of “Truth” and in the comedy genre.

    So yeah, I’m pretty much done typing now, and I don’t feel like editing this, so I’m just going to post it. I guess my biggest hurdle is the fact I often feel bad for doing videos that deceive on purpose. But then again I really kind of enjoy it. Okay, I’m posting. Comments to my comment are appreciated.

    Also, if I see something from Nalts that appears fake but I’m uncertain, I’ll just ask him. The same applies to me. If you just ask me, I’ll tell you.

  18. The first rule of honesty is to be honest with yourself. Nalts, I like your stuff. I am a subscriber. I also have a brain and actually use it from time to time. Just like the french fry skit, I knew you guys paid for the fries. I didn’t need you to spell it out for me.

    My fear is that you may be bending too much to your audience. Just because some people can’t read between the lines doesn’t mean that we all can’t. I wake up everyday and I have many choices to make. One of those is whether or not I want to watch your videos. No matter what you do, it will always be my choice. With that in mind…

    You can please some of the people some of the time, but you will never please all of the people all of time.

    Don’t loose yourself over stuff like this. Some of us actually like you the way you are. 🙂

  19. I agree with Amanda. I wouldn’t worry about the lowest common denominator, I’d be more worried that the egg campaign might blow up. A sizable faction of your fans seem really pissed that you had a face to face conversation with Renetto, never mind letting shave your scalp.

  20. Am I the only person who person who thinks that shaving your head is not a big deal? You gotta commit to the bit, baby!

    Personally, I’m all for somewhat-fictionalized videos (my pre-YouTube videos were more about filming my friends playing scripted, amped-up versions of themselves – that I wrote, of course…)

    I also think that the A in “YouTube A list” sometimes stands for “awful” – just that sense of candyfloss-addled self-regard that Lisa Nova parodied so well in her take off of the 777 video.

    “Individually…. we’re *awesome*

    Together we could….. end the world shortage in awesomeness!”

    Do Fans of Nalts shudder just a little if Nalts says he wants to be on the A list? Even if he’s pulling your leg at the same time?

    Like certain superheroes, your powers are most effective when you’re working outside the system. Am I right kids?

  21. Yes MarkDay I think you are the only person who thinks this is not a big deal…or maybe the idea of my own big fat bald head is just too much to handle.

    Nalts until I saw you today I was thinking that you somehow faked shaving your head. So for those distracters who feel you fake stuff; this real stunt should balance out those scales.

    That I could actually reconginze the arch of your shaven head from the back; which I had seen for the first time on YouTube a mere 12 hrs prior was very very freaky.

    So what is A list on YouTube anyway? Is being a Top 100 Director not A list?

    Also when WifeofNalts kicks you out; you can stay with me…but keep your camera in the van.

  22. Being in the A list on YouTube means that people know who you are even if they don’t watch your videos (well maybe they watched one but caught you on a ‘bad hair day’ video and decided you were an ass).

    For example I’ve heard of some of the people that frequent this blog even though I’ve never watched their videos. They may not be A list yet but their name keeps popping up in other people’s videos enough for me to have heard of them. At least that, in my opinion is A list. I don’t think anyone takes the ‘popular’ lists on YT as a real guide to A list.

    At the end of the day, don’t we all just make videos to amuse ourselves (even if you’re like me and make a lot of DIY or serious vids) then we throw them online and hope other people will enjoy them too. Motivation runs dry very quickly when you’re not entertaining or challenging yourself first.

  23. I was laughing so hard by the comments left on your video “is this real?” I was thinking… “hey dumbasses, haven’t you ever watched one of nalts videos before? He is totally screwing with you.” It made me laugh.

    My issue was that I found myself watching a shitty renetto video to find out what all the talk was about. Please don’t make me watch renetto. He is a tool.

    Lie to me… I like it!!! People need to get a sense of humor and quit being morons that believe everything they hear. People need to learn how to take a damn joke too!

  24. Mate, don’t tell anyone…but my YouTube “Wallyworld” persona isn’t what you think it is. I’m actually not an Australian copywriter living in Paris with a Frog wife and a two year old boy. I’m really an 88 year old recovering sexaholic lawyer living in the Galapagos on my schooner…with a bevy of Pitcairn Islander girls. (I did alright out of my dealings with the former Dic…I mean President of Haiti Baby Doc Duvalier) I’ve never been to Paris. Wouldn’t know her if I fell over her. BTW no offense…but there’s a lot of complete fucking morons in your country. And Nutcheese is right, Renetto is a tool. You lose points for sucking up to him.

  25. Your friend Renetto was right about your shoes. I got rid of mine after I left Jesuit, it appears that you not only kept them, but continue to shine and wear them!

  26. Hmm, it seems to be that if you want a completely balanced opinion then asking for comments on your own blog probably wouldn’t get that. Many of the people hear take the time to read your posts and comment because they like you, fiction and non-fiction.

    Though YT is also not a good place to ask for honest comments as many people just swear and hate for no reason.

    Of course, I love the videos, but I suppose it’s best if there’s an element of doubt in there. As long as people thought “maybe it’s a trick” then they won’t feel so stupid when it comes to the reveal.

    – Fox

  27. when i first watched the charles trippy videos with the whole phone number thing i laughed because if people ACTUALLY called the number they’d know it was fake.
    when i watched your easter video and read all the comments “omg the subliminal messages are sooo naughty!” i laughed because if people read the entire brief description they’d tell it was fake.
    i think the problem with the renetto videos isnt that you partnered with a guy who people either love or hate (very few inbetween) but because it teetered on the edge of truth and just believable. with a channel such as yours, where youre able to tell most of it is scripted, you cant toe that fine line, there has to be a gap between it so your fans dont feel youre being untruthful with them or trying to con them, instead of entertain them.

    i still love you though 🙂

  28. the fake stuff looking real is exactly what TV does to us all the time except most people don’t get or feel connected closer than when someone on youtube does something. if people could interact and post on Television then a community would evolve and they would feel the same way. Keep making videos!

  29. In advertising, we learn that if you’re talking to someone, you’re decidedly NOT talking to someone else. When you define your target audience, you also define who your target is NOT.

    One must post videos for the people who WATCH, not the people who DON’T watch. I, for one, am a relatively new YouTuber, and I don’t always know whether the stuff I see is real, or fiction, or a bit of both… and it doesn’t matter. I like what I watch, and I don’t watch what I don’t like. I don’t take it personally if I’ve been “had.”

    Item: When we say “the community” makes the rules, that’s fine, but as a filmmaker, am I not a part of said community? And if so, then am I not entitled to contribute to the online legislature too, and make some rules of my own?

    Rock on!

  30. Um — Isn’t everything on TV and the Internet real?
    “I saw it on The Daily Show …..so of course it’s true.” or “I read it on the Internets …. it has to be a fact.” Seriously people smarten up.

    The Internet & Internet “communities” are not (necessarily) reality. They just aren’t. Even if you are being genuine and truthful and honest all the time, how the hell would I know? If that makes a cynic, so be it.

    My rule of thumb: assume people are full of poop all the time unless and until they prove otherwise. But, like Oprah says “Everybody poops.”

  31. Nalts..I think the whole “trick,” “Tease.” Whatever people want to call it…It was awesome! I think most people would agree when I say your videos are funny and eye catching. Its a good laugh when needed. Now if people seriously unsubscribed to you ’cause of the ‘joke’, screw them! They might have unsubscribed…but they are still watching..ill bet money. I want to seee more TRICKS! Hah.

    Ps…I don’t think the baldness looks that bad! ;]


  32. absolutely no fiction. If I thought that you, renetto, iChannel, or others were portraying anything other than absoulte reality, I wouldn’t watch.

  33. I think a lot of people who had negative feelings about this series of videos feel that they were left out & made to feel foolish. They were not in on the joke, unlike the Spencer videos (where they were in on the joke and could laugh at the people being pranked).

    I wonder how many of the people who had negative feelings about this series of videos watch so called “reality TV” (idol, big brother, survivor) where they have the feeling that they are “behind the scenes” or “in the know” and yet are still at the whim of clever editing.

    I like your work, its intelligent & bold and always interesting, something I wouldn’t say about the majority of TV shows.

    Your “fictional” videos always have the 3 keys of a good magic act, the Pledge, the Turn, and the Prestige. The Pledge offers the audience assurances that nothing funny is going on (please shuffle the cards yourself; nothing up my sleeve, etc.). The Turn is the moment when something extraordinary happens (and the handkerchief is gone!). The third act, the Prestige, seals the deal—brings the handkerchief back.

    Keep up the magic.

  34. My sister recently poisoned my puppy with speed. A puppy on speed is an ugly, ugly sight. After two hospitalizations, a cathater and much sedation, the puppy survived. I took a few days off (with the puppy) to see my grandkids in Dallas and when I got back I found my mother had heard a minor leak in a toilet, ripped out the plumbing, flooded the house, pissed off the local water company, had the water to the entire house shut off, ruined a couple of my shirts cleaning up the flood she caused and stunk up the house with standing shit and urine. Who needs fiction when one lives with halfwits?

  35. I think the problem lies in the audience. So many YouTubers are Vloggers who use YouTube as their confessional, their therapy, or their means for social interaction. Because of this, they assume everyone is using it in that way – so when you use it as a means to express yourself creatively, through fiction, they can’t relate.

    Another factor is that many, if not most, of the people who do attempt fiction, or comedy, or satire, are unconvincing and their videos simply aren’t very good. So, when a Nalts creates satire (and does it well), people automatically take it seriously. When they find out it wasn’t reality, they are angry because they feel like they’ve been had, instead of appreciating that it was a skillfully crafted production.

    I was very surprised at the reaction to your Renetto videos. I suppose I’m equally as surprised at the disdain people feel for Renetto. It’s the down side of YouTube, I guess, because people feel that they have some form of ownership in your life just because they clicked a subscribe button. And, it seems that once you hit a certain number of subscribers, the community wants to knock you off your pedestal – as seems to be the case with Renetto.

    I’ve enjoyed (and watched… sadly enough) all of your videos. I appreciate them for their simplicity and impeccable execution. It seems you’re reinventing yourself lately, and I’ve enjoyed watching it. But, it will be equally interesting to see how it will be received in the months to come. The community doesn’t respond well to reinvention. They like you to fit in the box you came in. I hope they’ll continue supporting you as you venture out of that box. I know I will.

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