EvanTube by Chloe Kissane
NOTES: Origins and Context | See Also
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Origins of this content
Written for LFYT 2015 final by Contextualization
We have seen many former child stars go down a dark path. Stars like Justin Bieber, Lindsey Lohan, and Amanda Bynes have demonstrated that large public exposure at a young age can negatively affect one's adulthood. Child stardom on YouTube is a new type of fame and we have yet to see its repercussions. However, their type of fame is quite similar to a young Hollywood star.

"Childhood is about learning boundaries and figuring out how to cooperate, but famous youngsters are shuttled around by adults who tend to their every need. The stars are often aware of this loss of innocence even as they're living through it." (Khazan)[cit].
Evan is not your average 9 year-old. He is a popular YouTube vlogger who reviews his favorite toys and video games on his YouTube Channel. A fun bonding activity between Evan and his dad has evolved into Evan becoming an online celebrity. In total, Evan has received 1,219,928,462 views on his channel (imagine putting that on your college application!). Additionally, he has 1,390,405 subscribers. It is estimated that he receives around one million dollars a year for his videos through product placement and advertisements.

Evan has become a spokesperson for many different brands including Legos, Angry Birds, and Minecraft. Evan has his own sales team who arranges deals with different brands and businesses. The majority of Evan's earnings come from the products he plays with in his YouTube videos.

The style of videos has changed since Evan initially started making it videos. The first video he ever made follows the classic DIY format with a handmade sign, simple pictures, and limited technology. Evan acts like a typical 6-year-old child creating a home video with his father. In contrast, his current videos are professionally produced and include an official "EvanTube" label, special effects, and product placement. Evan is portraying a character, rather than being his genuine self.

The creation of EvanTube has lead to opportunities for Evan's entire family. His father, Jared, has created a career for himself by filming and producing EvanTube. Evan's sister, Jillian, has made several appearances in Evan's videos and has reviewed products in her own videos. Evan's mother has also participated in reviewing products, such as Blue Apron, with Jillian on Evan's second YouTube channel: EvanTube RAW. With all of the family members participating on EvanTube, it allows them to reach a wider product consuming audience.

Although his family participates on his channel, Evan is still the main star. Evan intertwines his innocent and entertaining personality while simultaneously selling products. His channel contributes to a new realm of YouTube in which the lines between authenticity and advertising are blurred. His endearing reviews on toys create more effective messages than traditional advertisements.

As discussed all semester, we are uncertain about the repercussions of children becoming YouTube celebrities due to this new type of fame. Evan will not be reviewing kid's toys for his whole life. Children brands will start to be less interested in Evan as he enters teenage years and adulthood. The question remains, what type of an impact will his childhood stardom have on his future?