The sad state of the youtube side of the weather industry.

Sep 26, 2022
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James Spann pushed out a really nice cute article a little while ago exposing the Internet side of the weather industry, and its causing a bit of a stir:

Fear Porn in the weather enterprise

because of that, Die-hard Stan's Of a Certain SOMEONE... *cough* ryan hall *cough* are beginning to go ham on James and other People calling him out.
Ryan Hall Stans VS Everyone else, no one saw this coming.... :rolleyes:
 

James K

EF4
Mar 26, 2019
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189
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Colorado
As for YouTube... anymore if I see a clickbait thumbnail, I skip the video. I'm sure I miss some decent stuff but fact is there's allot of crap out there, and its generally those with a clickbait-ish thumbnail.
When looking at YT for forecasts prefer channels like 'Forecast Lab' (Tim Vasquez) because they do a much more down to earth professional-level job without the over-hype or a bunch of stupid sound-effects in the background.
I do admit I watch Reed's .. as he calls them 'live emergency weather briefings' (even though he deff hypes things), but I can no longer watch any of his videos that have been edited before upload...those stupid moving text boxes ruin them. (he is the one exception I make for clickbait-ish thumbnails) .. whoever he's got editing videos & doing thumbnails IMO is ruining his stuff. :(
Sorry to anyone who is a fan but I can't stand Ryan .. I bypassed my "avoid videos with ckickbait thumbnails" thing and tried to watch couple of his vid's at some point... couldn't even finish them. The flashy graphics & stupid sound-effects made it totally unwatchable for me. So I have no idea if the info he puts out is actually good or not.


If I'm wanting up to the minute local weather, I'll just plug in the weather-radio or(if its evening time for news) turn on the TV.
That said, I don't go to YouTube for 'professional' weather, infact I pretty much avoid channels that obviously belong to TV stations/networks. LOL


Oh and I 100% avoid TikTok (infact I blocked it on my home network) as that app & website is malware/spyware. I certainly want nothing to do with it.
 
Sep 26, 2022
59
41
6
16
Allendale, Michigan
As for YouTube... anymore if I see a clickbait thumbnail, I skip the video. I'm sure I miss some decent stuff but fact is there's allot of crap out there, and its generally those with a clickbait-ish thumbnail.
When looking at YT for forecasts prefer channels like 'Forecast Lab' (Tim Vasquez) because they do a much more down to earth professional-level job without the over-hype or a bunch of stupid sound-effects in the background.
I do admit I watch Reed's .. as he calls them 'live emergency weather briefings' (even though he deff hypes things), but I can no longer watch any of his videos that have been edited before upload...those stupid moving text boxes ruin them. (he is the one exception I make for clickbait-ish thumbnails) .. whoever he's got editing videos & doing thumbnails IMO is ruining his stuff. :(
Sorry to anyone who is a fan but I can't stand Ryan .. I bypassed my "avoid videos with ckickbait thumbnails" thing and tried to watch couple of his vid's at some point... couldn't even finish them. The flashy graphics & stupid sound-effects made it totally unwatchable for me. So I have no idea if the info he puts out is actually good or not.


If I'm wanting up to the minute local weather, I'll just plug in the weather-radio or(if its evening time for news) turn on the TV.
That said, I don't go to YouTube for 'professional' weather, infact I pretty much avoid channels that obviously belong to TV stations/networks. LOL


Oh and I 100% avoid TikTok (infact I blocked it on my home network) as that app & website is malware/spyware. I certainly want nothing to do with it.
There is a couple of decent YouTube forecasters out there, unfortunately they are not noticed as much because people like hype; People like it When the internet "Experts" say, for example: "OMG GUYS THIS WILL BE APRIL 2011 ALL OVER AGAIN!111!" and then it never happens. what these people are doing is not just annoying, its straight up DANGEROUS. this is a classic "boy cried wolf" situation: they are desensitizing Hundreds of thousands of people for when an actual serious situation does happen, people dont believe them because they have "cried wolf" so much. tiktok on the other hand, that gives me PTSD. no other words needed.
 

Randy Jennings

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May 18, 2013
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This is interesting. Most of it is focused on critique of mainstream media, only the end goes on to talk about YouTubers. It seems to me like we have a chicken and egg situation here and both are egging each other on. Mainstream broadcast media is competing now with streamed media (both large companies and YouTubers) so I can't help but wonder if many of them aren't adopting the clickbait style of the internet, but then again, some media was doing this even before YouTube was around. What amazes me is how crazy devoted some folks are to these YouTube personalities. I had one argue with me about radar a few weeks back and they informed me the "Texas Storm Chasers has the best weather radar and that my app (RadarScope) couldn't possibly be as good". I don't think the Texas Storm Chasers themselves would even make that claim.
 
Sep 26, 2022
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Allendale, Michigan
This is interesting. Most of it is focused on critique of mainstream media, only the end goes on to talk about YouTubers. It seems to me like we have a chicken and egg situation here and both are egging each other on. Mainstream broadcast media is competing now with streamed media (both large companies and YouTubers) so I can't help but wonder if many of them aren't adopting the clickbait style of the internet, but then again, some media was doing this even before YouTube was around. What amazes me is how crazy devoted some folks are to these YouTube personalities. I had one argue with me about radar a few weeks back and they informed me the "Texas Storm Chasers has the best weather radar and that my app (RadarScope) couldn't possibly be as good". I don't think the Texas Storm Chasers themselves would even make that claim.
Were in a very interesting time indeed. with all these big shot figures popping up on the web, it's starting to worry even the largest of companies. of course, bias and fake news has always been a problem in mainstream media. The mainstream media has always been king, but that crown is starting to get dethroned. There are some good eggs out there that dont adapt to this manipulation and give out actual honest reports. but unfortunately, especially in the tiktok sector, its gotten to a point where it is virtually unbearable.

I admit i used to keep tabs on these guys, and the devotion of some of these people to these guys and the amount of them is honestly scary. it's almost like they have an army of minions. (bare with me on this, as this will start to get very outlandish) based on experience, I already put this site at risk of being in the cross hairs by these fan bases just by putting out this post. large internet fan bases (Especially the ryan hall fan-base) can be EXTREMELY hostile towards people and sites as a whole. In fact, i had problems before where the more devoted fans straight up dropped death threats on me and leaked my personal info for exposing their favorite meteorological YouTuber before.
 
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Jamie H

EF0
Feb 25, 2022
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It's not the first time James Spann has brought things like this up and there's a fine line between accurately getting severe warnings out to people and overhype. Certainly the social media side of things is much, much worse, because it's how you get those clicks and likes to earn money, but he's also right in that mainstream media (like Fox News, which isn't really news) overdoes things to keep people in a perpetual state of fear. Fox News website today has headlines like: America's fentanyl crisis: 'It's an invasion,' and New York crime wave, which are only stoking fear, rather than calming it. Of course, we're then going down a different path...!
 
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James K

EF4
Mar 26, 2019
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Gavin Nichols said:
what these people are doing is not just annoying, its straight up DANGEROUS. this is a classic "boy cried wolf" situation: they are desensitizing Hundreds of thousands of people for when an actual serious situation does happen, people dont believe them because they have "cried wolf" so much.
I never thought of various YouTube weather Hypesters as 'dangerous', rather just "annoying but harmless".
You do make a good point on the "boy who cried wolf" type situation though!

-----
As for over-hyping(not quite the right word, but I'll use it for now) weather in local media (ie: TV mainly) where I tend to see it here is not with severe risk(something we really don't get much of anyway) in the spring/summer, but with winter storms! (obviously a bit different since they don't cause mass death & destruction the way sever thunderstorm outbreaks can) but still I've seen plenty of times where the news goes on about some incoming "winter storm", then we end up getting just a few inches.

-----
Jamie H said:
mainstream media (like Fox News
Like YouTube Clickbait/Hypsters, I generally avoid Faux News on TV .lol.
 
May 12, 2022
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All the different forms of media, whether it be left wing/right wings news or social media, is self serving and full of bias. I largely avoid all of it and I find myself much happier, with slightly more faith in humanity than I would otherwise.

In regards to weather... with today's technology that almost everyone has access to, it doesn't take that much effort to check official sources for information. And you don't need a degree to understand that if an official source is calling for a higher likelihood of severe weather, it would be beneficial to have a heightened sense of awareness comsumerate to the degree of said threat.

What amazes me is how crazy devoted some folks are to these YouTube personalities. I had one argue with me about radar a few weeks back and they informed me the "Texas Storm Chasers has the best weather radar and that my app (RadarScope) couldn't possibly be as good". I don't think the Texas Storm Chasers themselves would even make that claim.
They must have access to that Skunkworks black project radar feed! 🤣

The moral of the story is that most people are apathetic.... and they'd rather be entertained than informed.
 
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Warren Faidley

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May 7, 2006
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YouTube is BIG money. Ryan has to be hauling in over 50k per month, easily. My wife has an associate who produces a law-related show on YouTube and he pulls in over 25k per month, with fewer subscribers than Ryan.

I don't have a problem with chasers who provide accurate information on social media, but I still tune into local stations for live coverage when I'm chasing critical events, like Ian. They know more about local events, roads, reporting, logistics, etc., than social media reporters who do not live in the area.
 
May 12, 2022
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Warren, that's the source of the problem. Just about everyone knows there is bukku money to be made if you can pull in the viewers. The lure of easy money drives content creators to be the flashiest, and signal the apocalypse for every marginal event. If there wasn't any revenue to be had, you'd probably find far less social media "weather experts." And the few who would still post, would do it because they enjoy the process and legitimately want to accurately warn the masses so they can make informed decisions.

I'm honestly jealous that people can make that kind of cash just creating videos, lol. And here I am working 70 hours a week like an idiot to just scrape by! 🤔 Nobody but myself to blame I guess.
 
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Randy Jennings

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About a year ago my chase partner asked a high ranking met at a NWS WFO if it bothered them that a certain social media personality had more followers than their office did when most of their content was just repackaged NWS content
Their answer was, *well they help us get the word out, so I am ok with it."

To be fair, this social media personalitiy is a team player. They don't over hype for the most part and the stay on message with the local WFOs.

My biggest worry is that so many folks relay on these social media personalities for all or most of their weather information. I know my NWS WFO and NOAA all-hazards radio will be their 24/7/365 staffed by talented meteorologists. I don't think we can say that about the vast majority of the social media personalities. This is why I shy away from providing weather info to friends and coworkers despite them asking. I don't want them to rely on me - I may be chasing out of area or taking a nap when they need good weather info.
 
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Sep 26, 2022
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They don't over hype for the most part and the stay on message with the local WFOs.
Dont over-hype!? Randy, You have no idea how many times hes said that there is "strong rotation" and that a "Large Tornado" will touch down. And what happens? A skimpy ef0-1 that blows away a couple doghouses.

Yes, they do a good job on Passing on the local WFOs, And a lot of casuals use YouTube more than they use the main cable networks. BUT remember: This is Youtube, there is a LOT of Information they give out that is backed up by really outlandish data.
Like this video for example:

Here's Exactly How Much Snow You'll See This Year (2022)
 

Randy Jennings

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May 18, 2013
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Dont over-hype!? Randy, You have no idea how many times hes said that there is "strong rotation" and that a "Large Tornado" will touch down. And what happens? A skimpy ef0-1 that blows away a couple doghouses.
@Gavin Nichols - Sorry I was not clear in my post. I was not talking about Ryan Hall. I was a talking about another social media personality that my chase partner had asked the NWS Met about. While I have a definite opinion about Ryan Hall - I have not stated it here. I'm trying not to touch that with a 10 foot pole. He is probably the biggest lighting rod in storm chasing now, and many folks have a very strong opinion one way or the other about him. I don't really watch his stuff and I have never meet him, so I am just going to keep my thoughts to myself.
 
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Sep 26, 2022
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@Gavin Nichols - Sorry I was not clear in my post. I was not talking about Ryan Hall. I was a talking about another social media personality that my chase partner had asked the NWS Met about. While I have a definite opinion about Ryan Hall - I have not stated it here. I'm trying not to touch that with a 10 foot pole. He is probably the biggest lighting rod in storm chasing now, and many folks have a very strong opinion one way or the other about him. I don't really watch his stuff and I have never meet him, so I am just going to keep my thoughts to myself.
Its no problem man! to be honest i kind of antagonized the conversation a little bit. I do understand that there are smaller ones out there that are legitimately good.

and if i were you, i would extend that 10 foot pole to a 30! :p
 
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Warren Faidley

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The evolution of chasing has been fascinating to observe, especially being a part of it since the late 1980's. First it was the advent of getting dangerously close for publicity, using "grey" science for promotion, and now, it's a battle to be the king of social media. I just love it that a handful of social media gurus are getting more online viewers than TWC!

Makes me wonder what is next?
 
Sep 26, 2022
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41
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Allendale, Michigan
The evolution of chasing has been fascinating to observe, especially being a part of it since the late 1980's. First it was the advent of getting dangerously close for publicity, using "grey" science for promotion, and now, it's a battle to be the king of social media. I just love it that a handful of social media gurus are getting more online viewers than TWC!

Makes me wonder what is next?
What would happen next? Well.... People will start making claims that tornadoes are actually alien spaceships and are controlled by the goverment! 🤣
 

John Farley

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Apr 1, 2004
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I have never used Youtube to get weather forecasts, and never will. Material generated by NWS is more accurate and useful, and without the commercials. And of course people in this group know, or should, to look at model output, not Youtube self promoters, or at least I would hope they would. Now I will watch storm videos on Youtube, but do not see it as a useful place for forecasts.
 
Jul 5, 2009
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I am with @John Farley on only using NWS products. I even hate that stupid native iPhone weather app, which this morning had the audacity to explicitly indicate that there would be a particular 6-minute rain-free period. (So much for trying to move the public toward understanding probabilistic forecasts).

The only non-NWS source I use, particularly for winter storms, is a local forum called PhillyWx.com. Lots of knowledgeable folks on there, including current and retired local NWS mets. I don’t know much about winter storm forecasting, so I rely on those guys for real-time analysis with every model run, whereas the “official” NWS forecasts are updated only a couple of times per day.

B89E578B-2C92-4A6A-9D98-00A09031E910.png
 
Sep 26, 2022
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Allendale, Michigan
I am with @John Farley on only using NWS products. I even hate that stupid native iPhone weather app, which this morning had the audacity to explicitly indicate that there would be a particular 6-minute rain-free period. (So much for trying to move the public toward understanding probabilistic forecasts).

The only non-NWS source I use, particularly for winter storms, is a local forum called PhillyWx.com. Lots of knowledgeable folks on there, including current and retired local NWS mets. I don’t know much about winter storm forecasting, so I rely on those guys for real-time analysis with every model run, whereas the “official” NWS forecasts are updated only a couple of times per day.

View attachment 23252
Boy do i hate those dumb Bare-bone rain forecasts. it makes my brain rot.
 
May 10, 2007
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This video is so hard to watch
[/QUOTE]

If you take his forecast literally, more than 3/4 of the forecast period has already elapsed. After all, he says "How Much Snow You'll See This Year (2022)" in his video title and also in his audio. More than 9 of the 12 months of 2022 have already gone by.

Should we take that into consideration, "y'all", or should someone pay more attention to wording?
 
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James K

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Mar 26, 2019
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Jonathan Scrogham said:
Ryan Hall spoke about this on an Episode of the Storm Front Freaks podcast.
I might have to try & find that just out of curiosity to hear what he says.

John Farley said:
I have never used Youtube to get weather forecasts, and never will. Material generated by NWS is more accurate and useful, and without the commercials. And of course people in this group know, or should, to look at model output,
For upcoming local weather I do look at NWS forecasts produced by the local office, basically choosing that as my main go-to source.
For national stuff I mainly give a quick check of the SPC outlooks & upper air charts.

Oh and I have been known to look at models -just on occasion- if I want a more 'in depth' look at something local, like timing & such of when/where afternoon rain/storms in the summer are expected to move through, (and for snow in the winter)...
(wouldn't go so far as saying "make my own forecast" (I can't do that) just try to get a better idea on something/maybe what you'd call 'make my best guess based on data' for specific location)
 
Apr 23, 2010
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What I want is a network to compile each tornado video in each state…much as was done for tornado video classics.

Each one may have a little something. Once a woman on camera was looking scared at a tail cloud—and paying no attention at all to the tiny condensation cone and the debris swirl at its base.

That was a teaching moment forever lost. Or a narrow, near invisible funnel that shoved a vehicle off a highway long before the event earlier this year.