From Iceland — YouTube Membership: What's All This Then?

YouTube Membership: What’s All This Then?

Published October 18, 2021

Josie Gaitens
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Since we launched our YouTube membership scheme earlier this month, we’ve been bowled over by your support and kindness. So far we’ve been delighted to have many of you join us aboard the good ship Grapevine, and it’s been a pleasure to start interacting with you all via this new medium (please note, this is a very different type of medium from the ones who write our Horror-scopes).

However, some of you have questions. “What is membership?” You cry. “Who is that strange Scottish lady and how did she break into your office?” You howl. And all night long we hear the lamenting wails of “How do I get that emoji of Pollý smiling?”

So, in the interest of transparency and to calm the marauding crowds that have gathered around Grapevine HQ in search of answers, we sat down with Reykjavik Grapevine’s editor-in-chief, Valur Grettisson, and demanded he explain himself.

Youtube Membership. Whazzat all about?
We’ve seen the size of our Youtube audience grow massively this year, in part thanks to the eruption in March. Even though the volcano has changed and isn’t the breaking news story it was in spring, people have obviously found something they like in our content and stuck around. We had lots of people asking for perks and ways to support us, and launching Youtube membership seemed like a great way to deliver that.

Seems fair. But don’t you already have a membership scheme? What’s happened to The High Five Club?
Nothing has happened to it – it’s still there and members of it get all of the perks they signed up for as usual. The High Five Club has always focussed predominately on the magazine and our written content, and was set up to support that. Youtube memberships is about – well, Youtube, and the perks that people receive reflect that. There’s very little overlap between the two. You can be a member of one, both, or neither. Whatever works for you, man.

Why is now the right time to launch Youtube Membership? Why do you need my support?
We’ve had a lot of fun making videos so far, but we’re at a point where our ideas are growing bigger than our production capacity. We’re a very small team working hard to make content for a growing audience, and we want to continue to make things that reflect our interests and values as a publication. We have a host of brand new shows that will be making an appearance over the next few months, and even more at the pipe dream stage that we would love to make once we build our capacity. Plus it would be really nice to be able to give Art a holiday one day.

I’ve actually already joined membership but I can’t find the link to a video / don’t know how to do the Pollý emoji / want to tell you a secret
Youtube provide a lot of help and support to Youtube Members, you can find it here.

For anything else you can email us: We’re not experts but we’ll do our best!

What sort of content should we expect to see coming up on your Youtube channel?
So many different things! Firstly I have a new show launching on Halloween, called Supernatural Iceland. Look out for the trailer coming soon. The first episode is already available to WINE members and above, and it will continue to be released a month ahead of general release to them.

We’ve always covered diverse topics at Reykjavik Grapevine, from food, culture, music, language, news… we are working on ways to integrate issues that we cover regularly in our paper into video content for Youtube as well. Expect to see familiar faces, and some new ones too.

Can you go over the membership levels and perks, one more time?

Sure thing!

GRAPES: €0.99
– Loyalty badges next to your name in comments and live chat
– Custom emoji to use in comments and live chat
– Members-only posts, polls and extras on the community tab

WINE: €4.99
– Perks from previous level
– Early access to new videos
– Behind-the-scenes content

– Discord chat
– Video credit
– Unpublished raw material
– Members-only live streams
– Free Grapevine tour

Okay, we mostly feel satisfied and might stop throwing rocks at your windows now.
Thank god. I think the main thing to say is that for non-members, nothing will change. You’ll still get the same content as we have always delivered, for free. Membership is an added extra, not a reduction of content for regular viewers. We think the extras are great, and they help support us make new and exciting content for both members and non-members, but if it’s not your jam or you don’t feel able to support, no worries.

Lastly: how many youtube comments do you receive each week referring to you as a silver fox?
What?! I – I don’t know what you’re talking about. What was that? Sorry, I think our connection is bad.

Valur, we’re in the same room
You’re breaking up. Can barely hear you. I better go, bye!

You can now join Reykjavik Grapevine as a Youtube Member! Find out more about it and see our video content on our Youtube homepage, here.

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