WHEN the country’s biggest YouTube stars gathered at the colourful Google SA offices in Bryanston, the mixed bag of personalities was an example of the variety of popular voices to be found on the internet.
From pink-haired gaming geek Grant Hinds to South African swimmer Calvyn Justus, each member of the group of eight had thousands of people following their vlog (video blog) and their YouTube channel to get their perspective on different matters on Wednesday night.
Among the internet sensations on the white couch was Theodora Lee, who has a community of almost 200 000 subscribers to whom she gives advice about getting through the teenage years.
Another advice vlogger is Aisha O’Reilly, whose area of expertise is hair and beauty.
O’Reilly says it took a while for her to feel like she could vlog for a living.
“In the beginning, it was me sort of asking brands to pick me, but now the roles have reversed and brands are approaching me to feature their products.
“That’s when I realised it was something I could end up doing as a career.”
She said her videos were never supposed to be available to the public and she only shared them with her friends, who then egged her on to make them available to everyone.
Now her YouTube channel MyFroandITV has almost 10 000 subscribers.
The No 1 channel in the country is Kruger Sightings, which offers videos from the Kruger National Park.
The creator, Nadav Ossendryver, is proud of the channel having more than 200 000 subscribers and almost half a billion views.
The newcomer on the vlogging block is Moshe Ndiki, who entertains thousands with self-deprecating anecdotes.
Ndiki recently quit his job as a call centre agent to vlog full-time.
“I think I’ve been sleeping. People are out there working and I’m here making people laugh for free,” he said, laughing.
“My aim was not to make money, but if I can earn a living from doing what I love, then I think it’s only fair.”
This article was originally published on IOL.co.za and appeared in the 09 October 2015 Edition of The Star newspaper.