I’m an animator, though I’ve never gone to school for it. I have a channel without a corporate backing. I’ve gotten a network offer, even though I’m an amatuer artist. The internet, over the past couple of years, has made possible for entertainment what it made possible for small businesses. You can get started in your room, garage, or basement towards making a livelihood for yourself in the arts.
So, how does it work? I’ll focus on Youtube. Most people know that they can create a Youtube channel. From there, one can get subscribers, who will receive updates when you post new content. Starting not too long ago, anyone can become a Youtube partner. It’s basic and you have to extensively prove your rights to upload your videos, but this provides a primitive business model for monetizing content through ad revenue. Here’s some info on it: https://www.youtube.com/yt/creators/creator-benefits.html
This is where it gets fun. To mediate the legal issues of copyright, as well as consolidate popular channels, third party networks sprung up. Through these networks, content creators can get better deals on their ad revenue and make videos based on more intellectual property, as the Networks will often pay for permission in bulk from, say, a game development company. It’s a win-win provided that the network is genuine. My offer came from BroadbandTV network, which is a large network that specializes in gaming-related content.
Here is a list of the top networks by their subscribers:
The significance of all of this comes from the fact that indie content creators have an incentive to post quality content frequently, as they can now be more properly compensated. Youtube has grown from a site for people to share their videos to a platform for video production into which people put huge amounts of time and effort (my most recent animation took me a few months to complete).
It’s an exciting time to be a content creator, and I’d encourage artist, musicians, producers, and all other creative types to take full advantage.