Within just one week, YouTube‘s 2018 Rewind – a recap of “the videos, music and trends that defined YouTube in 2018” – has become the most disliked video ever on YouTube. Since its release on December 6th, the video clip has accumulated 11 million dislikes, passing Justin Bieber’s “Baby,” that has received 9.8 million dislikes in an eight-year period.
YouTube’s Rewind is promoted as a celebration of internet culture, featuring “a variety of zeitgeist-defining personalities – from mainstream celebrities to the world’s top YouTube creators to viral video stars,” according to Google.
The annual rewind video from YouTube is intended to recognize the very best music, moments, memes, and creators on the platform and has done so the past eight years. It featured stars such as Will Smith, Ninja, Liza Koshy, Superwoman and Casey Neistat – showcasing trends like Fortnite, “Baby Shark,” ASMR, and the dance challenge to Drake’s ”In My Feelings.” The recaps feature many of the most well known YouTube personas acting out corny scenarios in a lengthy music video, and are generally accepted to be awful.
The massive rise of dislikes maybe related to the possibility that the video did not include many of the most famous YouTube creators-Shane Dawson, Logan Paul, and PewDiePie. All of them have enormous follower numbers on YouTube. PewDiePie has come under fire for producing and promoting hateful content. Logan Paul was censured by YouTube for disturbing videos, including one that was taken down from Japan’s “suicide forest.” Dawson has also made troubling “jokes“.
Since YouTube Rewind was published a week ago, the backlash continues to be loud and constant. Creators who starred in it, like Marques Brownlee, have addressed the controversy. The backlash directed at YouTube for this year’s Rewind comes down to an evergrowing disparity regarding the platform’s true creator culture and the polished version that YouTube wants to present. “I think the problem with YouTube Rewind, at least how I see it, is pretty simple actually,” Brownlee said in a video. “YouTubers and creators and audiences see it as one thing and, YouTube, who’s in charge of making it, sees it as something completely different.”
The community, which was once celebrated by YouTube, no longer feels as a part of the culture YouTube really wants to promote. It is uncertain what the company is going to do in the years ahead, but one thing is for clear: YouTube Rewind is no longer a celebratory occasion the community is looking forward to.