Youtube as effective medium to address young people

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From October 14th till 16th 2016 the youth conference Webdays 2016 took place in Berlin. “Your Data, your security, your opinion” – this Motto describes what the conference was all about: Young people discussed about data security and consumer protection on the internet. In order to hear what younger people have to say about digital issues, they debated in workshops with experts and found claims for politics.

To attract the attention of young people for this event and to motivate them to take part in discussions of different issues beforehand, four so called “Youtube Stars” were involved in the marketing strategy of IJAB.
The four “Youtubers” addressed their fans on their popular youtube channels and called on them to sign in for the conference and to discuss the topics in the comment section. To keep it authentic, all of them chose a topic which would fit into their channels in general. Central questions of the videos were: “Isn’t the internet just a waste of time?” “What is the darknet?” “Are we heading for cyber war?” or “Can digital participation really change something?”

Three days after the videos were released, over 150 young people applied for the conference. The videos generated more than 250.000 views and more than 2.000 comments of young people. Here you could see their main interests and what was most important for them. For example:
“The Internet has brought some huge changes over the past years. Everything seems easy: meeting people with dating apps, expressing your political opinion or sharing pictures with your friends. But it’s not all good. People tend to be superficial self-promoters and the personal communication suffers. We need to talk!” (Simon, 19 years)
Youtube nowadays is more than beauty advice or gaming. Successful bloggers on youtube reach out to millions of young people.
It is a “place” where opinions and different views, even on political issues, are exchanged and discussed. Not only products can be placed but also youth information with serious topics can be disseminated and reach young people.

This is the second time IJAB chose this way of successfully addressing young people and making them discuss digital and political issues.
60 participants between the age of 16 and 22 visited the WebDays conference in Berlin and discussed with other youngsters, politicians and experts about all the topics related to internet and data security.

All claims and questions were collected and given to the ministry of justice and consumer protection. A small delegation of young people was chosen to represent the results of the conference at the IT-Summit of the German federal government in November 2016.


Youtube as effective medium to address young people