News / Arts & Entertainment

YouTube Spawns Asian-American Celebrities

YouTube Spawns Asian-American Celebritiesi
X
February 28, 2013 2:11 PM
From movies and TV shows to songs on the radio, there have been fewer opportunities in traditional media for Asian-American entertainers. But the Internet, especially YouTube, has changed that. Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles, a place that has seen an explosion of Asian-American YouTube celebrities.
Elizabeth Lee
— From movies and TV shows to songs on the radio, there have been fewer opportunities in traditional media for Asian-American entertainers. But the Internet, especially YouTube, has changed that.  Los Angeles has seen an explosion of Asian-American YouTube celebrities.

Clara Chung loves to create music. She does it in her home studio, surrounded by instruments, a microphone and a computer. She says she didn't think her music would turn into a career until it ended up on the Internet.

“The Internet was probably the foundation for everything in my career and still is," she said. "It provided a global audience.”

Using the stage name Clara C, the Korean-American indie pop artist hears from fans from around the world.

“With just a click of a button, Japan is watching, and Australia is watching, Europe is watching.  It was crazy to see France, Germany, Indonesia, Singapore, whatever, everywhere it is all because of YouTube,” she said.

Chung is a part of a large group of Asian-American musicians, actors and comedians who have exploded onto YouTube. Julie Zhan produced a documentary about them called Uploaded: The Asian American Movement.

“Other than maybe a few Asian-American leading actors and actresses in television, we really do not see that many Asian-Americans on screen except for a lot of stereotypes,” Zhan noted.

And that's what makes YouTube unique say Joe Jo and Bart Kwan, founders of JustKiddingFilms.  

“It is content created by us, so it is truthful content opposed to Hollywood content,” said Jo.

In their comedy clips online, Kwan and Jo try to show a diverse group of Asian-Americans, says Kwan. “Once the mass media and traditional media can see that there are just as many Asian thugs as there are Asian doctors or recently immigrated, just as there are fifth-generation Asians that will lead to fewer Asian stereotypes in traditional media," Kwan said.

Zhan says the entertainment capital of the world is also the hub for Asian-American YouTube artists. 

“The YouTube celebrities, the really successful content creators, are very much centered around Los Angeles,” she added.

That's why the Fung Brothers duo moved to Los Angeles.  After less than a year of creating comedy on YouTube fulltime, the Chinese-American team is attracting a large following. It ranges from Asian-American males in their 20s and 30s to high school girls.

“Prior to YouTube there was really no way to come in contact with the Asian-American demographic,“ he said.

Now, in addition to posting content, many Asian Americans are allowing ads to appear on their YouTube videos and are earning money from those ads.

They are generating sufficient income from that to become successful artists.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid

New in Music Alley

The Hamilton Live

Acclaimed jazz saxophonist Tia Fuller has made a name for herself appearing with such high-profile artists as Beyonce, Esperanza Spalding, and Terri Lyne Carrington. Tia and her quartet performed music from her CD “Angelic Warrior” on our latest edition of "The Hamilton Live."