Its often talked about how platforms like YouTube, Instagram and Etsy offer a place for independent creators to showcase their art, videos, photographs, music and much more, and a viable way to make money. A new report is looking to put numbers behind the content.
Titled “Unlocking the Gates: America’s New Creative Economy” the Re:Create Coalition’s analysis looks at the number of creators and the amount of money they generated in each state for the year 2016.
Maryland is home to an estimated 288,568 such creators. As a result, 2016 earnings from independent creators pumped a total of about $101.2 million into the state’s economy. Of the nine big platforms analyzed, YouTube generated the most income with $53.5 million.
“Before when you wanted to showcase your art, you needed an art gallery. For writers, they needed a publisher. For musicians, you needed a recording studio,” Dr. Robert Shapiro, cofounder and chairman of Sonecon, told Technical.ly Baltimore. Shapiro authored the report along with Siddhartha Aneja.
The platforms analyzed also included Amazon Publishing, WordPress, eBay, Shapeways, Tumblr and Twitch. They’ve proven to be a driving force in the country’s economy.
Across the country, the study shows a staggering 14.8 million total American creators in 2016. Creators craft their own content and make money through ads, sponsorship, social media traffic or direct sales. As a result, creators earned at least $5.9 billion in revenue from their work, the study states. The report looked at independent creators, leaving out household YouTube stars and brands.
Among the country, the study reports California (2,830,720 creators), New York (1,655,654 creators), Texas (905,479), Florida (823,202), and Illinois (532,017) as the top five states for the total number of such creators.
Shapiro said the nearly $6 billion in revenue earned by independent creators across the country is “still modest as a majority of creators earnings are from part-time jobs,” indicating this is just the beginning for creators. Indeed, the study, only analyzed one revenue-sharing model per platform.