YouTube channels, uploads and views: A statistical analysis of the past 10 years
To this date, it is difficult to find high-level statistics on YouTube that paint a fair picture of the platform in its entirety. This study attempts to provide an overall characterization of YouTube, based on a random sample of channel and video data, by showing how video provision and consumption evolved over the course of the past 10 years. It demonstrates stark contrasts between video genres in terms of channels, uploads and views, and that a vast majority of on average 85% of all views goes to a small minority of 3% of all channels. The analytical results give evidence that older channels have a significantly higher probability to garner a large viewership, but also show that there has always been a small chance for young channels to become successful quickly, depending on whether they choose their genre wisely.