Salt Lake City, Utah (ABC4 News) – Likes and subscribers. For some, it’s not just about gaining attention on social media, it’s about making money. An ABC4 special goes behind-the-scenes to learn more about the lesser known parts of the influencer lifestyle.
What appears to the public eye as a life full of constant fun and exciting adventures, a Utah YouTube family is sharing an inside look at some of the challenges.
Michael and Rebecca Beach, along with their kids, create family-friendly content every week. Posting videos on their YouTube channel, The Beach House.
With nearly one million subscribers, the family profits off of ads that appear in their videos.
But with changes coming to the video consumer giant, family-friendly creators are concerned.
“I mean, that’s the scariest thing that we’ve ever faced since we started YouTube in 2011,” Michael Beach said.
“And there’s been a lot of scary things that have happened,” Rebecca Beach said.
YouTube is being sued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for illegally collecting personal information from children.
The lawsuit states the video platform must stop collecting data and serving targeted ads.
The change effective January 1st.
But this new policy isn’t just affecting the billion-dollar company, it’s YouTube content creators like The Beach House.
“We’re really being forced at this point to make a choice,” Rebecca Beach said. “To either put up kid content still, family-friendly content and not make any money off of it…which will eventually lead to us being out of the job…Or, we can pivot and make our videos more adult videos.”
“Just rated more PG, PG-13, so you’re targeting that teen audience,” Michael Beach said.
The Beach’s said the FTC has good intent wanting to protect children. However, they say those creating kid-friendly content are going to have to adjust.
“Throw in a swearword or you know, we don’t want to make that decision and we don’t want to have to become that way. We don’t want to change who we are,” Rebecca Beach said.
“Because at the end of the day, kids are still going to be watching YouTube,” Michael Beach said.
With a looming deadline and an uncertain future, the Beaches are continuing to stay true to their viewers.
“It’s hard to have that attitude and then on camera be like all excited and like there’s no emotions behind-the-scenes,” Rebecca Beach said. “Like, just pretend like nothing bad is happening and hope that nothing bad does happen even though we know it really feels like an execution date.”
One in particular was shared with the family through a letter.
“She said it’s really inspired her to stop with those bad things that she was doing and not even realizing that they were really not good until she saw a better example,” Rebecca Beach said. “So, I feel like even if that’s the only impact we have, even if it’s just one person in like the almost million subscribers that we have, that’s worth it. You know, that’s a whole life.”
Now, while there are challenges that come with the job, the beach’s say they love what they do and hope to keep creating video content for years to come.
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