After their huge controversy, Channel Awesome may be rebranding in an attempt to further dodge the bullet.
Apparently a Channel Awesome rebrand is in the works. A few weeks back I wrote an article detailing the Channel Awesome controversy and what it might mean for smaller content creators and their platforms.
A shorthand version is that a group of former content creators released a Google Doc listing all their grievances and CA released two very bad responses. After that, they seemingly lost every contributor they had and approximately 5% of their subscriber base. You can read the article here if you want the full story.
Fast forward to earlier this week, I see a YouTube video titled: “Doug Walker has NOT Quit Channel Awesome” which basically says exactly what the title suggests – that the Walker brothers haven’t left CA.
The evidence of this is that apparently a Sibling Rivalry video on the latest Avengers flick has been uploaded to the channel on YouTube. These videos are apparently unscripted so he must still be working with Channel Awesome… yeah, I don’t quite see how that constitutes evidence but still, it’s an interesting line of thought.
Admittedly, I wasn’t really planning to do a follow up piece on my previous article because I don’t count a single video as confirmation. Thankfully, there’s a second video detailing an alleged plan to rebrand as Nostalgia Critic (which is Doug Walker’s YouTube character).
So, just to be clear: this is still all speculation at this point. There are several videos talking about a potential rebrand but it’s all up in the air at the moment so we’ll have to wait and see.
What do I think about a Channel Awesome rebrand?
Well… let’s put it this way: I understand the decision. I don’t agree with it but I do, to a point, understand it.
Channel Awesome is a business and all that matters to them is views
They want to change their brand name and identity and, hopefully, repair the damage done to their reputation in the process. Is that possible? Sort of, I think they’re hoping that if they re-brand people will forget about the controversy – which isn’t likely.
On the other hand, many newer viewers might not know about Channel Awesome at all if this rebrand happens. After all, we’ve seen how thoroughly they erased former contributors’ content; it wouldn’t be a stretch to think that they intend to erase the CA brand name completely and replace it with something else (Nostalgia Critic or something similar).
At the end of the day, the Nostalgia Critic is still a hugely popular series on YouTube and that’s all that really matters: the number of views their content generates.
Also, unless my understanding is incorrect, Doug Walker was sort of the central figurehead of Channel Awesome. With that in mind, it makes sense to make him the focal point of a re-brand.
On the other hand…
Like I said before, the decision to rebrand makes sense from a business standpoint. That said, I’d have liked to see Channel Awesome own up and apologise for all the crap they’ve put their former contributors through.
This move of theirs to rebrand feels like a desperate attempt to dodge the proverbial bullet and avoid having to admit any wrongdoing. Now, to be fair, Doug Walker has admitted that communication was a serious issue within the company and said they were trying to fix it. Okay, so that’s something – not much – but something and if they are trying to fix the communication problem (which was one thing the former creators heavily emphasised) then great.
Sadly, that doesn’t change the fact that it looks as though a genuine, sincere apology is NOT going to happen.
Is this move by CA going to set a precedent for dodging bullets? I doubt it. Money is important to a business and it only takes one angry customer to cause trouble. If your company doesn’t make money you end up closing up shop and that’s the end of the story. If you make mistakes you should learn from them so you don’t make them again.
Whether or not CA will learn from their mistakes with this rebrand – if it happens – I don’t know, but somehow I have my doubts.
Final Thoughts: Frustrated and tired – please let this be the end of the story!
Hopefully this’ll be the end of the story for a while because I haven’t seen much in my trending/recommended feeds on YouTube recently apart from Channel Awesome-related videos and it’s driving me nuts!
I’m not likely to do a second follow up on whether or not the rebrand happened because I’d essentially be repeating myself again. It would also probably be only six words long: “It Happened: Channel Awesome is Dead” and that’s not much fun to read, is it?
Sheesh, these guys are like the ultimate internet trolls!
So, that’s my two-cents worth on this latest development in the Channel Awesome debacle and I want to know yours. What do you think of this move to rebrand? Will it help/hurt them and why/why not? Hit me up on Twitter and let me know.