Family vlogging channels are incredibly popular, with users attracting millions of views by showing what they say is their family’s everyday reality.
However, these family channels aren’t all fun and games—and in recent years, the public perception of family vlogging channels has taken a downward turn. Scams and controversies have been seen across a variety of family vlogging channels, and as more children of family vloggers get older and begin to share their experiences, internet users are growing uncomfortable with the idea of watching a child age on-screen in real-time.
Now, a user on TikTok has gone viral after sharing their own issues with family vloggers.
“Please do not watch family vlogging channels. Please do not watch family influencer channels,” says TikTok user KC Davis (@domesticblisters) in a video with over 2.3 million views as of Tuesday morning. “You are supporting the exploitation of those children if you consume that content.”
KC then shows clips from a family vlogger, Lilly Davis (@dearanddarling), who is planning a vacation. The influencer says that they do not want their kids “filming and working the entire time”; as a result, they are only going to be creating “a few videos a day.” Later in the video, the influencer shows a spreadsheet revealing just how much they plan to film during their vacation.
“We don't even get to see the whole spreadsheet, but there are at least 71 lines on this—and I know not every space is filled up, but I went back and counted and it's 40 videos. And that's not even the whole list,” KC states.
“They're gonna make 40 videos with their family, their children, on this trip…Their idea of their children not working is making 40 videos,” she continues.
KC then notes that these videos are not necessarily easy to make. As a result, the actual creation of these 40 videos may involve a significant time investment on the part of the children, including outfit changes, reshoots, and more.
The very fact that this much planning can go into such a series of videos, KC says, belies an uncomfortable truth about family vlogging.
“If you have this idea in your head that people that do family vlogging channels or family influencers are just going about their authentic life capturing things as they think about it, I want this to sear into your brain,” she says, referring to the schedule. “That's not what's happening.”
KC goes on to explain how children’s personal moments may be violated for the sake of a video, or children may have their life events orchestrated in order to better appeal to viewers. This is not to mention the workload that some of these kids are dealing with given their intense filming schedules.
“If 40+ videos is them giving their kids time off, can you imagine how many videos families like this and other family vlogging [channels] are making their kids perform?” she concludes.
Lilly Davis' TikTok account has since gone private, likely due to the backlash she's received. Her Instagram account is still public and active. The Daily Dot reached out to Lilly Davis via email for comment and to KC Davis via email as well.
@domesticblisters This is the saddest thing I’ve seen in a long time. #strugglecare #mentalhealth #familyvlogging #familyinfluencers #greenscreen #greenscreenvideo ♬ original sound - Kc Davis
In the comments section, users shared their own thoughts on family vlogging channels.
“What's the difference between this and child actors?? Why is one exploitation and the other not,” asked a user.
“My kid who is now 15 wanted to be a YouTube kid when he was 7/8. He BEGGED me and I said no. Now he tells me thank you for not doing it,” said another.
“I did commercials as a kid and the SAG limits were so strict (rightly so) for how much we could work in a day,” detailed a third. “These kids have unlimited work hours.”
“I’ve totally stopped following family vloggers. I respect vloggers who have stopped filming their children so much!!” stated an additional TikToker.
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