For my print project, I chose to look at seven history-related YouTube Channels and analyze what roles do they play on spreading historical contents to the general public and how do the audience react and interact with these channels.
In terms of the YouTube Channels, I tried to find channels that are already well-established and have a significant amount of viewers. I also wanted to analyze channels that have the element of “living history” or historical reenactment, whether it is personally taking the audience to historical landmarks to recount historical events or dressing in 18th-century clothing and talk about 18th-century fashion history. Therefore, I chose the following seven channels as the main focus of my project: Townsends, Drunk History, Karolina żebrowska, The Crown Eye Production, The History Underground, Bernadette Banner, and the English Heritage.
I watched many of their videos to get a sense how each of the channels are representing history. I researched on the creators of these channels to find out their historical background and their motivation of creating the videos. I also focus a lot at the comment section of the videos. I wanted to see how the audience is reacting to the videos, do they feel that they are learning history? How did they come across the videos? Why they like or dislike learning about history in this format? Do they share their own history knowledge or family history related to the videos? Will they seek for more history-related videos or do more research themselves? Do they care about the accuracy of the history knowledge?
In order to better answer these questions, I chose one video from each channel based on how popular they are and how historical they are, I downloaded the comment section onto Google Sheets and use search functions by entering keywords such as: history, historical, family, accuracy, accurate, interesting, education, educational, informative, fun, etc.
I also want to incorporate Voyant Tools to analyze the comment sections, but I am still trying to figure out how the clean up the comments data so that the top results from the program is not words or symbol like “the” or “=”.