Over the last few years, Reaction Channels on YouTube have been hit hard due to copyright laws by COPPA and many new changes that are happening on the internet. What creators need to understand that it is extremely important for everyone to follow those changes and adapt to those copyright laws.
No matter how anyone views it, Reaction Channels are changing and HAVE to change. Taking content from an original source like anime and adding it to your commentary track isn’t how DMCA works. With new laws also launching in Japan all surrounded by copyright, creators have to adapt and also pay respect to original creators and sources.
An example of DMCA laws making an impact is KissAnime, a piracy website that streamed anime for years. The website which was recently taken down took original content from sources and streamed anime without it being an official streaming service like Crunchyroll, VRV or Funimation. Reaction channels that follow a similar format need to change their ways before 2021 when the new copyright laws will change how everyone consumes content.
We can get into the details about DMCA laws, but I’ll leave that to the professionals. Today the All Ages of Geek Crew and I are here to help creators and fans of those creators change their content in a positive way. Some people don’t even know about these new laws, and others are still avoiding them. This will be a way to help creators not only understand the importance of ever-changing copyright laws but also help them create much more transformative content for their audience. Here are a few tips and tricks to be sure you are following the copyright laws and a few companies who do this right!
How to Format Reaction Videos
All Ages of Geek’s Weeb Watch-a-Thon series follows a very simple format: Watch Alongs + Commentary + Analysis.
This format does not show the video of the original content. Instead, it gives the viewers a timestamp and countdown when we start the video, pause, and end. It gives an immersive experience for the viewer almost like watching a series with an online friend remotely.
We show no video from the original source and have no audio from that source playing in the background. Our content format is:
Host + Microphone + Camera (for video commentary) + Commentary and Analysis.
As the team starts doing more Watch Alongs + Commentary + Analysis (we have been trying to get Matt to create content too) we’ll be creating two types of content:
Video Commentary: For series much like you see on Patreon and YouTube already.
Audio Commentary: When we do LIVE shows on Discord and record our audio commentary to movies such as Lord of the Rings or Star Wars.
As a patron you get access to LIVE commentary track recordings for Movie Commentary Nights so if that’s something you’re interested in here’s where to access the events.
Examples of Successful Commentary
A perfect example of this Watch Alongs + Commentary + Analysis style is from two companies you may have heard of over the years called Red Letter Media and RiffTrax. They commentate, react, and analyze films and series, and give the viewers access to their recordings to sync up alongside whatever they are watching. Thanks to Matt, I’ve looked over these creators’ content and realized what an impact they both have on the Reaction Community and how that community should take some inspiration from them.
RiffTrax is an American company that produces scripted humorous audio commentary tracks intended to be played in unison with particular television programs and films, featuring comedians Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy, and Bill Corbett and others.
About Red Letter Media
Red Letter Media, LLC, stylized as RedLetterMedia on YouTube, is an American film and video production company operated by independent filmmakers Mike Stoklasa and Jay Bauman. The company was formed by Stoklasa in 2004 while living in Scottsdale, Arizona, but is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin as of 2011.
Reaction Channels can learn from this style and also improve on their commentating and improv skills. One thing many people have against Reaction Channels isn’t just the style of the video but how many channels do not commentate. If reactors were to change that format and give commentary just like Red Letter Media and RiffTrax do with their commentary tracks than many people would give more respect to the content.
Review & Analysis
Instead of just sitting silently watching a series give commentary! This will make the reaction much more transformative. You can even go as far to give a full review of the series you are reacting to, take notes, and give an analysis in an almost video podcast type stylization.
Do a Watch Along
Do a Watch Along. It’s simple as long as you improve on your listening and analyst skills. We’ve mentioned above that it’s much more immersive when watching with friends, but also doesn’t harm any industry + encourages people to support the original source. Plus, it’s your commentary, footage, and audio. This is going back to what RiffTrax and Red Letter Media has done for years and is a great way to bond with your audience.
Need a Proper Set Up for Watch Alongs?
If you’re planning on changing up your content from reactions to Watch Alongs here are some helpful tech to do so!
Apps for viewers
Many viewers are concerned about how they will sync up Watch Alongs if they are using mobile devices. It’s much easier to sync on your computers since you can have multiple tabs open but for mobile users, it’s much harder. So the AAOG Crew has done some research to find apps you can use to make this possible for you!
Stick-It! (Pop-Up Player) for Android (Recommended by Kat)
Grid-Player Local for iOS (Recommended by Chase)
Audio Share (App to sync up audio) (Recommended by Matt)
Sites Viewers can Watch Along:
There are many streaming services viewers can do Watch Parties and binge-a-thons, and just like they do with their friends they can do the same with their favorite reactors.
These are the streaming services you can use to sync up your favorite Watch-Along commentary with.
As the internet changes it is up to creators to be responsible, change, and adapt to what’s to come. This change will also open new doors to the reaction communities around the internet to be much more respected and show a more transformative side to what their content can be.
If you are a reactor who is going with the flow of these new changes please leave your suggestions down below to help others in the Reaction Community also find ways to improve their content! At the end of the day, everyone is simply trying to do what is right and also help one other in the industry.