If you’ve heard of Youtube, it’s likely you’ve heard of the vlogging superstar that is Zoe Sugg aka Zoella. Zoella is mostly known for her beauty and hair videos, encompassing tutorials, ‘hauls’ and sponsored videos, however she also does vlogs (video blogs). I don’t really watch Zoella that much because I’m not really that interested in makeup and hair etc, although I have watched a couple of her videos before.
Anyway, Youtube is a big business for some youtubers – and it’s where most of their income comes from. However, most youtubers don’t have enough subscribers to make Youtube their one and only source of income. I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel that when a youtuber hits a certain amount of subscribers so that they can rely on Youtube pretty much solely, they change somehow.
Maybe this doesn’t apply to all youtubers – but once they seem to make it big, their videos become shorter and lower quality (even though you’d expect the opposite) and many of their videos are sponsored videos (basically a company pays the youtuber to make a video and slip in their product somehow – although most of the time it is quite obvious and not at all subtle). I don’t know if it’s because they think that they don’t need to produce high-quality videos anymore since they have some many subscribers now (which would be rather disappointing) or they are just so busy that it is impossible to make well thought out, funny videos anymore. I wouldn’t say that this directly applies to Zoella, but it does affect a lot of major youtubers.
Now, I’m going to move onto Zoella as an example of a youtuber who is very busy. I stated before that I don’t really watch her videos, but I still respect her and think that she is a likeable person. Recently, Zoella has gained a lot of subscribers on her Youtube channel (nearly 7 million at the time of writing this) and as a result she has been offered a plethora of amazing opportunities such as appearing in Vogue and at the Teen Choice Awards and even being asked by Bob Geldof himself to participate in recording the Band Aid 30 song, along with fellow youtubers Alfie Deyes (her boyfriend) and Joe Sugg (her brother).
In November last year, Zoella published her first book called Girl Online, which is about a teenage blogger called Penny (who notably has many similarities to Zoella such as suffering from anxiety, although Zoella has claimed the book is not autobiographical at all) falling in love with a teenage musician called Noah. Predictably, it went down a storm and quickly became a New York Times bestseller in the Young Adult category as well as the being declared the fastest selling book of 2014. I have not read the book myself (although I’m sure it was good if it had so many sales) although you can presume that most of the readers were Zoella’s fans and supporters.
The real scandal, however, was the hazinesss surrounding Zoella’s authorship. Before the book’s release, Zoella had not said that the book had a ghostwriter and that she did not actually write the book herself. Ghostwriting is where someone else writes the story or book and it is officially credited to someone else (the person who it is accredited usually has some part in how the story goes, such as the characters).
After it was revealed that she had a ghostwriter for the book and she received a lot of criticism on social media, Zoella said: ‘Of course I was going to have help from Penguin’s (the book publishers) editorial team in telling my story, which I talked about from the beginning. Everyone needs help when they try something new. The story and the characters of Girl Online are mine. I want to thank all of you who have taken time to support the book.’
The publishing company, Penguin also said: ‘Sugg did not write Girl Online on her own. She has worked with an expert editorial team to help her bring to life her characters and experiences in a heartwarming and compelling story.’
However, Zoella received so much online backlash, that it caused her to take a break from the internet, much to millions of fans’ dismay.
Personally, I think that Zoella should’ve said that she had a ghost-writer before the release of the book – but honestly I’m not surprised that she did. Zoella is a lovely person and fantastic youtuber – and besides, we can’t all write best-selling books by ourselves. I really enjoy writing and I would love it if one of my books was published someday – but not everyone has the ability to put what they think into words easily, and Zoella did come up with the characters and probably most of the plot anyway.
Basically what I’m saying is – we should not judge Zoella for having a ghostwriter. Okay, so maybe she should have said previously – but most of the people who are criticising her wouldn’t be able to write a bestselling book themselves, let alone come up with all the characters! Ghost-writing is a common thing, especially with books by celebrities and this might not be common knowledge, but it is in fact true.
Fortunately, Zoe is now back on the internet and back to making videos!
So, this is the end of my Youtubers, Zoella and Girl Online ‘rant’ – I hope you enjoyed! As you can see, my rants go on for ages… The next #RantingCorner post is coming soon.