Re:Create Recap – February 21, 2019

Last week, we shared with you our second annual report on the economic value of the New Creative Economy, which found that 16.9 million independent, American creators earned a baseline of $6.8 billion from posting their music, videos, art, crafts and other works online in 2017. The updated figures highlighted a 16.6% increase in the number of new creators and a 14.8% increase in total revenues with growth occurring in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Below is a roundup of additional resources and coverage to help our readers more fully understand how the New Creative Economy is “taking root.”

TechCrunch: US Twitch Streamers Raked In Roughly $87 Million In 2017. Jordan Cook with TechCrunch picked up on the study’s findings on revenue earned on Twitch reporting: “Twitch is one of the fastest-growing platforms for American content creators. In terms of year over year growth in number of creators themselves, Twitch falls just behind Instagram and YouTube, and ranks second behind Instagram in YOY revenue growth for those creators. (Fun Fact: Instagram’s creator-based revenue growth grew nearly 50 percent from 2016 to 2017 to $460 million, according to the study.).”

Mashable: Burgeoning Creator Industry Made Possible By The Internet. In an analysis of the study, Mashable’s coverage highlighted how conservative the findings are, noting that it looked at just nine platforms and was limited to data provided by the platforms and analysts, and left out mainstream Hollywood talent and music industry stars.  “Even without major platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Kickstarter, iTunes, Spotify, and Patreon, the study found a burgeoning creator industry made possible by the internet,” Mashable’s Matt Binder wrote.

Re:Create Op-ed: Internet Creativity Is Good For American Jobs And The Economy. In an op-ed for The Hill, Re:Create Executive Director Joshua Lamel drew on the study findings to demonstrate how the internet is fueling growth for independent creators as well as the broader entertainment industry. To support his case, Lamel highlighted recent Grammy winner Dua Lipa who got her start as a YouTube cover artist and Netflix’s “The Kissing Booth” which was first published on Wattpad and was named its most re-watched film of 2018. “The internet’s creative economy is good for everyone, and it’s been especially good for the entertainment industries. Universal Music Group claimed to have ‘the best year for any music company ever’ thanks in no small part to music streaming. Actors and recording artists can use social media followers to quantify their popularity, leveraging their fans for better contract negotiations, brand endorsements, and driving ticket sales and music purchases.” Lamel concluded with a warning: “Policymakers and the public must continue to carefully watch how these ‘gatekeepers’ look to chip away at balanced copyright provisions like fair use and safe harbors — crucial legal frameworks that online platforms rely on to operate.”