Sunday, February 27, 2011

We need to talk.

I'm a little upset right now, but I am going to try to be as level-headed as possible in writing this.

There are a few people complaining in my video comments about the legitimacy of the gold medalist for this week's fizzylimpics awards. This gets under my skin for a few reasons, the first of which is that at the end of the day, this competition doesn't matter. At the end of the day, what does a shout-out from a little guy with 3800 subscribers, most of whom don't even watch his videos, and the remainder of whom generally watch with passivity, actually mean, in the grand scheme of things? The award for winning was a shout-out from me. That is the same award that the silver gets, the same that the bronze gets, the same as half the people who didn't even win get. It's not like I'm giving money to people who don't deserve it. The only people getting anything physical are the people who entered all four competitions--not even the gold medalists get that.

I also know every video that broke the rules. To be honest, it was a significant chunk of the entries. I am as big of a rule-monger as anyone in a lot of things, and it was quite tempting to disqualify everyone who broke the rules and give a sarcastic "sorry." However, I reminded myself that my goal, my only goal in this competition, was to share good content and provide a venue with which to do so. That's why I would give a medal to someone who uploaded it a month before the competition, or to singers who did covers, or to videos that went over four minutes, or to people who sent theirs in after the due date, just to name a few. They made good content and deserved to have it shared.

I also don't think people realize how much time and effort I put into this competition. I had to stay up late several nights finding judges, giving them spreadsheets to judge with, compiling the list of videos to send them, and then compiling their answers and trying to come up with a gold from there. I could have spent my time doing lots of other things--things way more important to my life--but I thought someone needed to share this content. That makes comments calling me out extra-painful; it just seems ungrateful to me to say that with all this work, all this effort to be friendly and forgiving, someone would have the audacity to compare me to a corrupt politician.

All I really wanted to create was a light and friendly competition. I hope that we can keep it that way.


  1. Well spoken, Steve. I think a lot of people forget that we are no different from them. You are a person with a LIFE and a busy one at that. The fact that you set up this entire competition AND still did Fizzuary AND still was able to keep up with your life outside of YouTube is a great feat in itself! I'm sure the videos were judged the best they could and that 99% of the entries didn't mean to break the rules and that was awesome of you to not disqualify them because this competition didn't really mean ANYTHING other than building interaction within the community.

    All I really have to say to this scenario is... Haters gonna hate. We can't escape it and as you become more popular, more haters are going to show up. More people are going to view you as an entertainer or a "star" and will expect more from you. It's a sad fact for sure, but a fact nonetheless. All I can say is that I look forward to more of these blogs, because it really snaps a person back into reality when you respond to them this way. "Oh, Steve is just another guy like me. That's right!"

  2. People are going to criticize you sometimes no matter what you do and you can't ever really please everyone. It was more a community competition (as I am perceiving it) which is great and as you said, all anyone received was a shoutout to your community which is usually what a lot of people want anyway! You linked videos throughout Fizzuary to the other entries so in a way everyone got a shoutout and perhaps more new viewers and subscribers than they would have had anyway!
    Anyway it sucks when people post mean comments as it never achieves anything except putting more negativity out in the world!
    I liked the video throughout Fizzuary and am always impressed when people take on the whole vlogging every day challenge (I'm thinking of doing it throughout my 5 week US road trip) as its such a challenge and as a viewer and a really awful youtuber I know how much work is involved and I think your dedication is great!
    Well done Steve!!

  3. Hello! I started watching/subscribing to your videos because of Fizzuary, and I've really enjoyed your daily vlogs. Your dedication is pretty impressive, and for that I commend you sir.

    As to this hubbub about the Fizzylimpics, I think writing this blog entry is the best way to deal with it. Sometimes you just have to know that what you did is right, say your piece, and move on. Deadlines and rules get broken in competitions all the time - college applications get sent in late, audition song measure limits are extended, essays don't have the exact word count required... But the material that is most worthy usually comes out on top regardless. Yeah, sometimes it will ruffle people's feathers, especially if they worked extra hard to get it in on time. But that's life.

    I think you handled the situation incredibly well, and didn't lose sight of what you wanted the competition to be. What I would say to the h8ers is this: This isn't the actual Olympics, people don't get disqualified for an improper musical dismount. This is about having fun, and perhaps appreciating your host :D

  4. Even as someone who's just started making content, I understand entirely. People who haven't put videos up can't understand what it's like to have your work(that you've spent hours of valuable time on) criticized for stupid reasons.

    So yes. I am rather angry on your behalf, and I hope it doesn't bother you for very long! Best wishes. :)

  5. aw :( Stupid, stupid people. I want to thank you for taking all that time to put on the fizzylympics (and fizzuary) because I loved it. I really appreciate having someone point me towards good content. btw, I watch all your videos non-passivly (if that's a word) and really enjoy them. sorry about the stupid people

  6. Good on ya for being level-headed about this, Steve. It's never a good idea to get your rebuttal on when you're all hot and bothered. Better to wait even a little bit and collect your thoughts first.

    Man, if only these idiots could harness their anal-retentiveness for the forces of good, instead of jumping all over a friendly, non-zero-sum competition. Why bitch about the winner when there are no losers?

    By the way, Limey, I love the phrase "sorry about the stupid people". That's gold.

  7. De-lurking to say I'm sorry to hear that people are being so sucky. It's a shame that people are so much more inclined to voice negative opinions than positive ones... I bet for every negative comment you got, 10 more people had positive thoughts, but just didn't say anything. I guess I'm guilty of that myself, because I really enjoyed the Fizzylimpics, but I never left a comment telling you so. In any event, to put it crudely, don't let the b______s get you down! All that really matters in the end is that you thought it was a worthwhile endeavour & feel like you achieved what you set out to achieve. A month from now, the haters won't remember that you "broke the rules" of your own project, but you'll always have the satisfaction of knowing that you accomplished something. Just my 2 cents!

    - Becca