Creative agency co-op, part II

A while ago I rambled about an idea, and yesterday Jeremy Blake posted a video that tangentially rekindled my need to ramble about it.

Mostly I rambled about things some more on his Patreon Discord, and then after some further discussion I ended up posting a comment to the video itself:

One of the big problems with Content Creator YouTube is that everyone’s working in isolation and being pitted against one another as a race to the bottom, which is the same problem we’re seeing at a large scale with the Gig Economy (Upwork, Fiverr, etc.) and also the whole new patronage model that’s taken over Internet content creation. I’d love to see a more collectivist effort where there’s basically a “creators union,” with a group of people who work together and help each other out, and also maintain collective bargaining with the companies who would want to exploit us for cheap labor paid for with “exposure” and “free” gear. It would also be great for folks who are just getting started, giving them inroads towards working with others on creative efforts without having to kill themselves with crunch for the hope of being discovered and eventually getting an audience.

I don’t know what the first step would be in setting that sort of thing up, but gosh is it long-overdue.

Anyway, from that discussion, someone else linked to the EMMA Co-op, in particular their blog entry explaining their origin, structure, and motivation. Everything there is just 100% spot-on for what I want to be a part of, and they’ve also been extremely kind to share a whole bunch of useful information for how to actually get going, both from a practical and a legal/structural point of view.

It seems like this is therefore actually a doable thing, and my next step would be to find people that I’d want to get into this sort of business relationship with. Which is, of course, the extremely difficult part (for me, anyway).


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