Jan 232012

YouTube has become quite the pop culture shaper and launched a little cottage industry for thousands. I’d anticipate that will only continue to grow. That’s entertainment!

Wired magazine recently featured a dozen or so Partners in The YouTube Laugh Factory: A Studio System for Viral Video (December 2011) and distilled these 5 rules for getting noticed according to YouTube Partners (people making money via YouTube):

  1. Make a lot of content. A lot.
  2. Target a niche.
  3. Connect with your fans.
  4. Collaborate.
  5. Optimize for the algorithms.

These YouTube Partners are mentioned in the Wired article:

Tay Zonday https://www.youtube.com/tayzonday
Shane Dawson http://www.youtube.com/shanedawsontv
DeStorm Power http://www.youtube.com/DeStorm
Olga Kay http://www.youtube.com/OlgaKay
KassemG http://www.youtube.com/kassemg
Ray William Johnson http://www.youtube.com/RayWilliamJohnson
LisaNova http://www.youtube.com/LisaNova
Corey Vidal http://www.youtube.com/ApprenticeA
Shaycarl/ Shaytards http://www.youtube.com/shaycarl
Freddie Wong & Brandon Laatsch http://www.youtube.com/freddiew
Jimmy Wong http://www.youtube.com/jimmy
Nice Peter http://www.youtube.com/nicepeter
MysteryGuitarMan http://www.youtube.com/MysteryGuitarMan
Michelle Phan http://www.youtube.com/MichellePhan
Phil DeFranco http://www.youtube.com/sxephil
Ryan Higa http://www.youtube.com/nigahiga
Vlogbrothers http://www.youtube.com/vlogbrothers

According to a USA Today article (June 2011), there are over 20,000 YouTube Partners and a few hundred are making over $100,000 per year. At least 1 has made over $1,000,000. Revenue estimates 2010 are projected in this article, How Much Money Do The Top Grossing YouTube Partners Make? quoting the Business Insider piece, Meet The YouTube Stars Making $100,000 Plus Per Year.

According to a YouTube Partners discussion thread, the legal (and confidential) agreement states that “… You may accurately disclose the amount of Google’s gross payments to You pursuant to the Program” though it’s often erroneously rumored that YouTube Partners are prohibited from disclosing earning figures.

Note you can make smaller amounts of money at an entry level called Revenue Sharing on YouTube videos; but to make bigger money and get extra perks, apply for approval to the Partners program. And YouTube provides tips and resources for producing quality videos at  Creators’ Corner and Creators Hub. After all, if you make money, they make money.

Here’s 5 Secrets of YouTube’s Success (April 2010), an article published for the 5-year anniversary of YouTube with observations about why it’s succeeded beyond survival, and how it’s thriving and growing –

  1. It elevated the absurd.
  2. It got creative with advertising.
  3. It plays nice with Hollywood.
  4. It launched a new creative class.
  5. It’s willing to reinvent itself.

And, by the way, it’s messing with our brains - Clive Thompson on How YouTube Changes the Way We Think (December 2008). Keen insights from the communication-meister Marshall McLuhan:

Marshall McLuhan pointed out that whenever we get our hands on a new medium we tend to use it like older ones. Early TV broadcasts consisted of guys sitting around reading radio scripts because nobody had realized yet that TV could tell stories differently. It’s the same with much of today’s webcam video; most people still try to emulate TV and film. Only weirdos like MadV are really exploring its potential.

A bigger leap will occur when we get better tools for archiving and searching video. Then we’ll start using it the way we use paper or word processing: to take notes or mull over a problem, like Tom Cruise flipping through scenes at the beginning of Minority Report. We think of video as a way to communicate with others—but it’s becoming a way to communicate with ourselves.


Jan 182012

The OC Register put together a colorful photo slideshow to shed light on the many immigrant groups in Orange County, California, in O.C.’s top 10 immigrant populations. The content of this post is excerpted from the slideshow’s caption text by Cindy Carcamo, with demographic data attributed to the 2010 American Community Survey and 2010 U.S. Census. [ed.note: the captions note for every group that "It's unclear what portion of this population are U.S. citizens, legal residents or in the country illegally because survey officials don't ask."]

An estimated 918,000 foreign-born people lived in Orange County in 2010… More than half of this population is from Latin America, closely followed by Asia with about 400,000 people …

Mexico: An estimated 367,653 people in Orange County were born in Mexico. Mexican nationals make up 40 percent of the foreign-born population in the county. The longtime hub of the county’s Mexican community is in the city of Santa Ana, where Fiestas Patrias is celebrated each year in the downtown area. Mexican nationals have long been part of Orange County’s population. In Orange County, an estimated 888,255 people in 2010 described themselves as being of Mexican origin…

Vietnam: Vietnamese nationals make up the second largest group of foreign-born people in Orange County. Two years ago, an estimated 135,862 people in O.C. were born in Vietnam… The Vietnamese population is mostly centered in Westminster and Garden Grove. The Tet Festival is one of several celebrations for the community. The Vietnamese population is a political force in Orange County. Some leaders have gained key political positions in the county. In 2011, Michael Vo became Fountain Valley’s first Vietnamese councilman. He was a 17-year-old refugee fleeing the Vietnamese communist regime when he arrived in the United States in 1980.

Korea: An estimated 62,260 Korean nationals lived in Orange County in 2010… Many Koreans in Orange County reside in Irvine. Hundreds of people gather in the city for the annual Irvine Korean Cultural Festival. As the Korean population has grown, so has the community’s political standing in Orange County. In 2008, Sukhee Kang became Irvine’s first Korean-American mayor. Kang, a first-generation immigrant, became the nation’s first Korean-American mayor of a major U.S. city, according to news reports.

Philippines: An estimated 48,826 Filipino nationals lived in Orange County in 2010… Most of the Filipino-Americans live in Buena Park… Orange County has one of the highest concentrations of Asian residents, including Filipinos, in the nation… Filipino-Americans live throughout Orange County but are grouped mostly in Buena Park, La Palma, Irvine, Cypress, Fullerton and Stanton.

China: About 42,800 Chinese nationals lived in Orange County in 2010… This total includes about 20,000 people born in Taiwan. A little more than 30 percent of the county’s Chinese-American population lives in Irvine… Others live mostly in La Palma, Cypress and Fullerton. The Chinese-American population has taken leadership positions in organizations throughout the county, including the faith-based communities. In 2009, Francis Ng became the first priest of Chinese descent to be ordained in Orange County.

Iran: An estimated 27,500 Iranian nationals live in Orange County… The Iranian-American community is an active force in Orange County, often showing support for the people in their homeland. The Mehregan Festival is celebrated in Irvine by the Iranian community every year. The Persian festival will celebrate its 16th year in Irvine this fall.

India: An estimated 25,000 people in Orange County were born in India…  The Indian-American population in Orange County is primarily centered in Irvine and La Palma…  As the Indian-American population in Orange County has grown, so has the number of Indian eateries and grocery stores.

El Salvador: An estimated 18,000 people who live in Orange County were born in El Salvador… about 26,000 people in the county identified themselves as being of Salvadoran origin. This figure includes people who are born in the United States and identify as Salvadoran-Americans and people who are born in El Salvador. … Santa Ana is the hub of the Salvadoran-American community in Orange County. The community has more than doubled since 2000. The Salvadoran-American population in Orange County is nearly at 30,000. Despite the growing community, the Salvadoran consular office in Santa Ana closed late last year. Many in the community expressed sadness over the closure.

Canada: About 13,000 Canadian nationals live scattered throughout Orange County… Canadian nationals and Canadian-Americans are spread throughout the county. Some get together in O.C. to celebrate various Canadian holidays, such as Canada Day (July 1) and Canadian Thanksgiving (the second Monday in October). Canadian-Americans and Canadians nationals formed a group in Orange County as a networking platform. The group is called Canadians in Orange County.

Guatemala: An estimated 12,000 Guatemalan nationals live in Orange County… Guatemalan-Americans make up the third-largest Latino population in Orange County. However, the closest consular office is in Los Angeles. The Guatemalan consulate set up a mobile service in 2003 in Santa Ana to make it easier for the local community to get passports and identification cards. Hundreds stood in line for hours on that day for services. While Mexican-American businesses dominate in Orange County, Guatemalan immigrants have also set up some specialty shops, especially in Santa Ana.

Jan 142012

2 social networks dominate the new media landscape at this point in history — Facebook and Twitter. At the time of this writing, Facebook has 800+ million active users and Twitter has 100+ million active users.

Many of you, like me, use both Twitter and Facebook. But given the disparity in numbers, many more are on only Facebook and not Twitter. Thus, my rationale for sharing my Twitter tweets (which I use more) to my Facebook status updates, so that both my Twitter followers and Facebook friends can see my latest finds — a large %age of my updates are links to goodies I find. (I do have my Twitter Facebook app configured so that my twitter @replies do not get posted to Facebook.)

I didn’t want to be insensitive to my friends on Facebook; I’ve recently asked them if I should continue feeding my Facebook status updates with my latest tweets, or keep the two separated. The results ended in a close heat, by a margin of 9 votes, more of my friends wanted to keep my tweets connected!

The wisdom of the crowd is split on whether you should or shouldn’t have social networks connected with mirrored content. My counsel: be considerate of your Facebook friends, yours may be more Twitter-averse.

Here are comments that came in during polling season, for your reference, to assist you in making an informed decision about how you might use your Twitter and Facebook accounts:

KL: “It annoys me when people post to both twitter and FB because I have to see the same thing twice. Then again, I don’t follow many people on both twitter and FB so in practice this isn’t really a problem.”

TL: i think ideally you want to separate fb and twitter because they are different mediums with different purposes and circles (no google+ pun intended). so tweet certain things and fb post other different things. but who does that really?

i think the reality is that most people are heavier users of either one or the other. so it’s probably the minority that would see your posts duplicated on twitter and fb (and previously buzz)

KH: i think connecting different social media platforms is a great invention! =)

SM: i don’t know about ‘overwhelmed’, but i tend to prefer separate streams…

RM: Only because every one else says this.

WS: And I like to read them here too!!

LL: selective tweets is a good option so it doesn’t flood your fb

VS: it is a question I’ve wrestled with myself. At the moment the “time” issue is the determinant…I don’t have to do independent posts. When that changes, I will probably split the information.

MM: I also use the Selective Tweets. I appreciate the option of determining which tweets come to Facebook.

SK: I’m probably not a good one to ask, because I port all my tweets over to Facebook. Using Selective Tweets is too mentally taxing. I don’t have time to parse whether a tweet is “appropriate” for Facebook or not. I just know that everything I post on Twitter shows up here on FB, and that’s fine. Two different audiences (for the most part). Different conversations take place around the same content. It’s all good. That’d be my vote, keep on keepin’ on.

SS: I’d say go with your instinct, your gut feel. I like the way you think and reason!

SO: I would vote for Disconnect if it wasn’t for the parenthetical addendum. Its for strategic reasons I advocate separating them, not because I am “easily overwhelmed”

LS: Pile it on! I love reading your stuff. :)

DI: I say disconnect them! Why follow on facebook & twitter if both have same content?

CM: I use selective tweets. I think that works best also!

JR: I follow you on twitter. plus you can use selective tweets. :)

BW: I see all your Tweets on Twitter, so I wouldn’t need to see them here too. But, if it’s easier for you, I don’t mind them in both!

BR: Use select tweets so updates appropriate for FB can still be brought over. [re: what is appropriate?] Things that you think your friends might comment on as well as just less than twitter. Things w/o hashtags too.

What counsel would you add about whether or not to connect Twitter to Facebook?

Now, It’s also possible to connect things the other way, so your Facebook status updates get automatically posted over to Twitter. When do you think it’s better to connect it the other direction?

Jan 092012

Recently I’ve been looking for podcasts to subscribe to for my commute time. I’m most interested in the intersection of social and spiritual things, aka people & relationships, which isn’t as popular as topics like technology or cooking or celebrity gossip.

In the Christian podcasting world, most podcasts are sermons or teachings or devotionals or church tech; that’s okay for the masses. I’m looking to check the “other” box, not so much what books tag as “Christian life”; just Christians (and Christian-friendly people) talking about a faith-informed life.

Here’s a list of active podcasts I’ve found so far — if you know others, please do let me know:

Aside: the term “podcast” has been co-opted for audio files posted on a website. Podcasts I’m listing here are those that can be subscribed via iTunes or a podcatcher app (cf. Google Listen or Podkicker on Android), and are recorded & produced only for the podcast show, not recordings from other broadcast media. This list isn’t for dormant podcasts (cf. The Nick & Josh Podcast, Wired Parish), only those that are actively updated, like weekly.

Jan 072012

Question: “I’m looking for a church  in the DC area with a large Asian American demographic in attendance. I really want to be integrated into the Asian American community. Can you refer me to such a church in DC? I don’t have a car or know how to drive, so my traveling options are limited to just walking.”

Answer >> There are several churches in the metro Washington DC / Virginia / Maryland area that are predominantly Asian American, or significantly so, oh, let’s say, at least 25%. And by “Asian American churches” I’m assuming English-speaking autonomous churches, not the ethnic Asians that’d be a part of a Korean or Chinese church with an English ministry. As for not driving, what’s awesome about DC is the subway system called Metro that gets you to many parts of DC / VA / MD.

Here’s the ones I know of that demographically fit the description, excerpted from my list of next-gen multi-Asian churches plus a few others. Please do add a comment if you know others:

Washington DC

Washington International Church (NW) [Metro: Tenleytown-AU]
Worthy Life Baptist Church (NW) [Metro: Friendship Heights]


Ambassador Bible Church (Centreville)
Great Commission Community Church (Arlington) [Metro: Pentagon City]
New Life Church (Falls Church) [Metro: West Falls Church]


H.O.P.E. Church (College Park)

footnote: Open Door Presbyterian Church (Herndon) and Christ Central Presbyterian Church (Centreville) and Grace Community Church (Silver Springs) are what could be considered a “2 churches on 1 campus” model so that could kinda fit too

aside: also see Open Directory of Multiethnic Churches and wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_Washington_Area_Asian_American_demographics

Jan 052012

Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship, and Life Together by Mark & Grace Driscoll

As a leading voice of the next generation with growing impact around the world, Pastor Mark Driscoll and wife Grace have authored an incredibly relevant book for our sexually-charged culture. The book comes with well-grounded biblical teaching to exhort married couples to live out the Gospel and what that looks like in everyday life. The Driscolls also reveals their personal and family histories to give a context for how they’ve worked at growing their marriage towards oneness as friends and lovers. An accompanying DVD set adds to this personal texture and makes it easier for small group discussions.

Pastor Mark is also unafraid to candidly address the sex questions today’s people have about whether they can or can’t do something. After all, if the church doesn’t have an answer, people are left to make up their own answers under the influence of a mainstream media-driven culture that knows no moral boundaries. The most valuable part of the book for this reviewer is the final chapter that maps out a comprehensive “reverse-engineering” framework of discussion questions that makes accessible the honest communication often advised for marriages but often incomplete in other Christian marriage books.

Addendum: Of course, Driscoll is a lightning-rod for conversation and controversy (though he’s not as edgy as he once was now that his popularity and influence has grown), so as the book releases, it is getting an energetic promotional and marketing effort, and a growing amount of blog and news buzz.

Washington Post observed how Christian leaders talk about marriage and sex with mention of  Tim Keller and Rick Warren — and I’d agree that it’s a bit late to the party, as this article noted how Joy of Sex was published back in 1972. Really, almost 40 years later? If the church and pastors don’t address the topic of sex, mainstream media and pop culture sure will and does and has for decades. Better late than never?

Rachel Held Evans has noted in Why Being a Pastor Doesn’t Automatically Make You a Sex Therapist her reactions to the book’s good, bad, and ugly. Tony Jones (A Complementarian Who Thinks Mark Driscoll Is a Misogynist) won’t review this book. David Moore blogged at The Burner that Mark Driscoll Thinks Wives Are Only Good for Sex. Raleigh Examiner stated the obvious: Mark Driscoll and Real Marriage spark controversy.

What these critiques have overlooked (or editorially left out due to length, or their emphasis on points of disagreement) is Driscoll’s emphasis on the crucial essentiality of friendship in a marriage, the value of genuine curiosity to cultivate a real relationship, and not that marriage for just sex; thought Pastor Mark freely uses the phrase, “friends with benefits.” One quote I found in the book, “The biblical pattern for Christian marriage is free and frequent sex” raised my eyebrows. Hadn’t heard that one before.

[disclosure: I received a review copy via booksneeze]