The YouTube Adocalypse
I can’t count the times that I have been glued to my camera while exploring the outdoors. Part of me does it for social media, to help inspire others to get outdoors and the other part does it because for pure enjoyment. Turning on my camera and seeing the world through that little screen allows me to stand by a mushroom and examine every angle, admiring its beauty through the micro setting. Without photography, I would have never noticed the mushroom or the perfect angle of that river. As Aerosmith once said, “I don’t want to miss a thing.”
When I feel like I cannot capture the perfect moment, because the environment or circumstance is not allowing me to capture the humanity of my surroundings; I turn to video. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but it is hard to capture a narrative of a location or situation without written script or audio. Sometimes, it just gets hard describing the adventure of a place when you passed another telephone poll pine in the Florida forest. I honestly, can say I wish I took and edited more video, but video is not an easy medium, even if it’s purpose is to document an adventure, versus winning a Sundance Film Award.
As much as I love documenting my journeys I haven’t felt the need to make a profit of my work. Maybe someday, who knows, but for now I am happy to get people outside with a picture or a sound bite. Even though, I may not, it doesn’t mean others should be discouraged from finding financial success from doing what they love. After all, throughout our childhoods we get told, “If you do what you love you never work a day in your life.” Isn’t making your job exploring the outdoors the goal for every adventurer?
This is what concerns me about the Adocalypse that happened on YouTube. It was a to subsidize your income to go on more adventures. If you are under 1,000 followers you may not make much, but isn’t making enough to buy a new set of boots or by some more gear notable enough to be encourage? As part of the outdoor community, we are here to support each other in our dreams, and to explore outside more. If putting up a gear review or explaining how you conquered that hill, makes your next adventure more feasible, please share it with the world. I am not sure what saddens me more, for this time to be taken as means for us to battle each other over the morality of how you finance our adventures, or the loss of income for people who have trouble affording the outdoors. The outdoor community is small, and we are always in danger, as any other community, of going against each other on the principle of purity of our hobby and interests. Let’s bond together, and help each other, where would be without a little help with our friends anyway?