My Thoughts On What YouTubers Should Be

This is a follow-up to yesterday’s post: My Thoughts On What J-Vlogging Should Be.

 

I was talking to one of my friends on Facebook about how the current J-Vlog scene seems so artificial and he was upset that I would imply that the newer YouTubers (he thinks that the new wave of J-Vloggers aren’t J-Vloggers but rather YouTubers who live in Japan and make videos about Japan and talk about Japan. Yeah, doesn’t sound like something a J-Vlogger would ever do /s) are being lazy or cheap in their efforts. I want to make this its own post rather than just add it to my previous one, so let me do some clarification.

 

What?! YouTubers Are Lazy?!!

 

I’m not saying they’re not putting in any effort, quite the opposite.

 

The thing that’s bugging me about how “People Who Are Totally Not J-Vloggers Who Live In Japan And Make YouTube Videos Showing Notable Parts of Japan And Occasionally Making Social Commentary About The Culture of Japan” (yup, totes not J-Vloggers /s) is that their videos are too slickly produced and it creates a distance between the YouTuber and the audience because the YouTuber has made this idealized version of themself that the audience can’t relate to.

 

I feel that as a YouTuber, you have to be 100% yourself, warts and all. When I met up with other YouTubers in Japan, I got a couple comments about how “it really was me” when they finally met me in person, and that made me so happy. As Kurt Bell aka SoftyPapa once said, “The message sent is never the message received” and I was initially afraid that the YouTubers I was meeting would have the wrong impression about me from my videos, but thankfully that wasn’t the case. Speaking of Kurt, he’s a great example of an authentic YouTuber!

 

I know a lot of people were upset that he left Japan and wants nothing to do with making videos about it anymore, but that’s his prerogative. He was upfront about his frustrations and shortcomings living in Japan, so he decided to move back to Cali.

 

If he wanted to be “a YouTuber trying their best to make big videos that will attract an audience”, in order to retain that large audience he gained, he would have either tried to stay in Japan or continued to talk about his time in Japan while in the States, even though he doesn’t want to do it. But he stuck to what he believes in, told everybody what was going on, and explained the refocus of his main channel, and I respect him a lot for that.

 

What About YouTube Shows?! 

 

I know some people might be thinking, “But Andy! What about the people on YouTube shows? Are the characters on these shows not real YouTubers?!”

 

There’s certainly a place for characters on YouTube, but you have to be upfront with your audience that this is a character you’re performing and not who you really are. Otherwise people are going to get the wrong idea about you and not take what you have to say seriously when you do try to be authentic.

 

What Are Your Thoughts On What YouTubers Should Be?

 

I’d like to know what you guys think about this! Let me know in the comments below!

 

TheAndySan

My Thoughts On What J-Vlogging Should Be

It’s been a week since I made a post, but I’ve been very busy with work and school so it’s hard to find the right time and creative headspace to sit down and write something. Until today! 😀

 

There’s been something that I wanted to talk to you guys about, but I didn’t quite know how to approach it. I still don’t, but I’m gonna give it a shot anyway.

 

I’d like to talk about what I think J-Vlogging (Japan Video Logging) should be about (hence the title).

 

I’m sad that the community lately has been largely focused more on the inner drama between a couple people (who they are changes with the weather it seems, so no use in naming names), going to well-known spots in Tokyo making Travel Channel-like videos, and making the occasional “Is Japan Racist?” video (this doesn’t happen as often as it used to, but it still happens more than it should).

 

I’ve been a member of the community since its inception at the beginning of YouTube. I’ve seen lots of great J-Vloggers come and go, I’ve seen the community at its zenith, and I’ve seen it split off into the different subgenres of J-Vlogging that we see today.

 

I’d like to think that during my first time in Japan from 2013-2015, the AndyJapandy series was an authentic POV of my stay there. I was very hesitant on using B-Roll and doing voice-over for that stuff like I’ve seen so many other channels do because I feared that it’ll come off as pretentious and I’ll lose that connection with the people that watch. I also didn’t want to come off as a subject matter expert who knows every little thing about Japan because while I do know a lot about Japan, there’s still much I don’t know. However, I want to share what I do know and share my experiences without just making it a blank slate for anyone to insert themselves into to experience Japan vicariously. To me, it’s very personal.

 

Not sure if any of this made sense, but that’s just my feelings towards J-Vlogging; it should be about YOUR experiences in Japan and not a Travel Channel show about notable spots in Japan. You can show off those spots, but remember that it’s about YOUR experience there first and foremost.

 

If there are any J-Vloggers out there reading this, it’s not a dig on you guys; these are just, well, my own thoughts and opinions on J-Vlogging and you’re more than free to agree or disagree with me.

 

On that note, I’d also like to open the floor to you guys. Tell me what you think about the J-Vlogging community today. Is the TV show-esque voice over of B-roll footage what people like more than the original vlogging style of face in front of the camera and then voice behind the camera focusing on the scene? Or are those styles simply just different instead of one being better than the other? Just remember to be civil in the comments; no need to start a flame war here 😀

 

TheAndySan

Good News & Bad News On My Study Abroad To Japan

So I just got back from school today after talking to my VA coordinator, and it turns out that my Post 9/11 GI Bill won’t cover study abroad costs or even the courses offered there. If I were to do the study abroad, the funding would have to come out of scholarships, grants, and out-of-pocket.

 

This is both good and bad in that while I can’t use the GI Bill at all during the study abroad, I will be able to resume using it when I come back. It’ll suck not having a monthly source of income from BAH while abroad, but I do have plans on applying for scholarships to help fund my stay in Japan.

 

In addition to scholarships, I’m also looking into other ways of funding such as GoFundMe. It’s still very early to announce my GoFundMe campaign because I need to look up what scholarships are available to me and the expenses incurred from studying abroad. That way, I can list a breakdown of everything so you’ll know exactly what you’re funding instead of me just putting up “Hey! I wanna go 2 Japan! Halp meee!”.

 

After work tonight, I’m going to email the study abroad coordinator for more info and to figure out where to go from here. I’m not considering the inability to use my GI Bill abroad as a solid NO for going back to Japan, but rather an extra roadblock for me to overcome. Once I get more info about scholarships and other means of funding, then I can establish a plan for getting back out there again.

 

Well, I have work soon so I’m gonna get ready. Bye guys!

 

TheAndySan

Feeling Deflated Lately

My financial situation is really wearing on me. It sucks not being able to do anything. Sure I could go out and walk around town, but it’s just a barrage of stuff that I can’t buy, and that’s depressing. Not that I want to buy a lot of things, but it’s nice to know I can if I want to.

I don’t really feel sad about it since I’ll be getting paid in a week, but I’m not happy either. As the title says, I feel deflated; a real lack of energy.

I’ve also been cutting back my coffee consumption to just 1 cup a day instead of 2 in order to save on coffee and to better sleep at night. Despite those benefits (I’ve been sleeping really good lately), my mind has been feeling really sluggish and doing anything seems to be an ordeal.

 

Back To Japan In 2017?!

In happier news, I’ve been looking into study abroad programs in Japan offered at WMU and I’ve found one that I really like; the Japan Center for Michigan Universities (JCMU) in Hikone, Shiga Prefecture. It is a very scenic area with Hikone Castle and Lake Biwa very close by, and it’s only a 45-90 minute train ride to Kyoto, Osaka, and Nagoya, so there’s plenty to do and see! It’s gonna be about a year or two before I’m eligible for the program as I’m still a freshman and need to bump up my GPA a bit more. It should be good come 2017, but my rental contract doesn’t expire until April 2017 so I’ll have to stay here until then at least. Thankfully, the program seems flexible enough for me to start in the fall of 2017, but I need to talk to the program coordinator to see about expenses and if the Post 9/11 GI Bill will still cover me while in Japan. From what I’ve read, it should; but it’s best to make sure.

Also, just a little side note here, but if I do end up going back to Japan in 2017, it’ll coincide with the 10 year anniversary of Rodger Swan’s Tokyo Swan series, which started on September 19th 2007! It’s funny because we’re both J-vloggers and from WMU, although Rodger went to Keio in Tokyo.

I talked about the program and how excited I was to be possibly coming back to Japan, but a lot of my friends pointed out the amount of money that I need to get over there. It’s gonna take some time and I’ll have to sell a lot of my things to help cover the initial expenses. Thankfully from what I’ve read, as long as I’m still a full-time student I can also collect BAH even in Japan! I’m not sure what the dorm costs will be out there, but my expenses should be significantly lower once I get myself situated. I also still have my Japanese cell phone from when I was in Yokosuka, so I could get it reactivated at Softbank while I’m in Japan, so that’s one less thing to buy.

 

Gonna Watch Some Anime, BRB

Well, I’m gonna watch some good ol’ anime to relax tonight. I’m thinking first season of Genshiken (the best IMO) and then maybe finish up where I left off with the second season if there’s time. See ya guys!!

 

TheAndySan

AndyJapandy 124a FINALE – Sayonara Japan (American ReMix)

So long Japan, and thanks for all the fish! And ramen! And curry!

My original video got banned in America because of the outro song, so I added a copyright-friendly song so everyone can still see it!

Feel free to leave suggestions for future videos in the comments or PM me on YouTube! Enjoy and please comment!!

TheAndySan

 

**Tech Notes**

*Cameras Used*

Sanyo Xacti CG-6
LG G4
Sony Alpha α5100
GoPro Hero4 Black
Sony Alpha α5000
Sony CX430V
Sharp Aquos Xx 304SH
Motorola Droid 4
Motorola RAZR M
Canon PowerShot SX230

*Programs Used*

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 (Build 428) 64-Bit
Audacity 2.0.5

*Music Credits*

BGM: Prelude No 18 (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: Chris Zabriskie

AndyJapandy 124 FINALE – Sayonara Japan

So long Japan, and thanks for all the fish! And ramen! And curry!

Feel free to leave suggestions for future videos in the comments or PM me on YouTube! Enjoy and please comment!!

TheAndySan

 

**Tech Notes**

*Cameras Used*

Sanyo Xacti CG-6
LG G4
Sony Alpha α5100
GoPro Hero4 Black
Sony Alpha α5000
Sony CX430V
Sharp Aquos Xx 304SH
Motorola Droid 4
Motorola RAZR M
Canon PowerShot SX230

*Programs Used*

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 (Build 428) 64-Bit
Audacity 2.0.5

*Music Credits*

BGM: Apologize (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: The Big O OST

AndyJapandy 123 – Moving Out Of Yokosuka Japan

I move out of my lovely apartment in Yokosuka Japan 🙁

Feel free to leave suggestions for future videos in the comments or PM me on YouTube! Enjoy and please comment!!

TheAndySan

 

**Tech Notes**

*Camera Used*

Sony CX430V

*Programs Used*

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 (Build 428) 64-Bit
Audacity 2.0.5

*Music Credits*

BGM: Dirt (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: Technoir

BGM: Nightgowns (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: Tom Misch ft. Loyle Carner

BGM: Zoom Zoom (Space Jungle Edit) [D-SLO Brown ReMix]
BGM Artist: Polo & Pan

BGM: Plage isolée (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: Polo & Pan

BGM: Stages of Grief (D-SLO Brown ReMix)
BGM Artist: Kevin MacLeod

AndyJapandy 121 – Yokosuka Day Tour

I take you guys on one last tour of Yokosuka Japan before I move back to the States!!

LINKS DOWN BELOW!!

Feel free to leave suggestions for future videos in the comments or PM me on YouTube! Enjoy and please comment!!

This video was originally recorded on September 08, 2015.

TheAndySan

 

**Tech Notes**

*Camera Used*

GoPro Hero4 Black

*Programs Used*

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 (Build 428) 64-Bit
Audacity 2.0.5

AndyJapandy 120 – Akihabara Tour

By popular demand, I take you on a tour of Akihabara!!

 

This video was originally recorded on January 04, 2014.

TheAndySan

 

**Tech Notes**

*Camera Used*

Sony CX430V

 

*Programs Used*

Sony Vegas Pro 13.0 (Build 428) 64-Bit
Audacity 2.0.5

 

*Music Credits*

BGM: Skyline (D-SLO Brown ReMix) [Monstercat Release]
BGM Artist: Karma Fields

BGM: Hypnotique (D-SLO Brown ReMix) [Monstercat LP Release]
BGM Artist: Varien ft. Charlotte Haining

BGM: Aphasia (D-SLO Brown ReMix) [Monstercat Release]
BGM Artist: Mr FijiWiji

BGM: Yours Truly VIP (D-SLO Brown ReMix) [Monstercat Release]
BGM Artist: Mr FijiWiji ft. Danyka Nadeau