when Patrick Shyu loses his way and becomes a victim of his own doing
Patrick Shuy as The TechLead.
I?m sure that you?ve heard of the ex-Google, ex-husband, ex-Facebook, millionaire popularly known as The TechLead. The slightly cynical but likable developer popped up on my YouTube feed at the beginning of 2019 and have since endeared himself as a source of inspiration and comical interlude for many.
But since his partnership with another YouTuber ? Jomatech ? to launch an educational product that?s being reviewed as somewhat subpar by those that didn?t get what they felt was $90 worth of actual content ? TechLead?s overt uses of monetization techniques are starting to backfire on him.
In the very beginning, TechLead offered content that was geared specifically at developers with content that gave insights into the Silicon Valley development world that?s applicable to almost any software development environment.
Patrick Shyu?s content was about learning how to learn with product placements and reviews that are coupled with affiliate links. The way he presented disclosures was different from how others were doing it and brought a certain level of curiosity towards the product in question.
His delivery and way he shares his experiences was a refreshing take on the plethora of coding tutorials and content that was in circulation at the time. In a way, he became the human face of code and that the person behind the screen is also a human.
At some point, The TechLead probably started to run out of original content relating to working as a developer as his channel starts to pivot towards money related topics.
The real change started to show after his interview with Graham Stephen back in June and a majority of his content since July has been related to money, making and how he made his money as a developer.
While Stephen manages to keep his demographic of viewers and continues to grow it organically, The TechLead is having a difficult time balancing the fine line between monetizing himself while remaining true to the personality that he presents on the Internet.
According to Social Blade, his growth has seen its peeks and viral hits but as a channel, The TechLead is struggling to maintain his views and have dropped significantly in subscribers’ growth rate.
The Descent towards the Fall
In the last month, TechLead has been in a bit of a fight with another YouTuber, much younger and much smaller than himself by abusing the copyright system to silence criticism.
Tren Black, a 19-year-old computer science major with YouTube channel as an extra-curricular addition to his University duties, made an outspoken video that took apart TechLead?s new product as a rip off from a former sponsor.
The video highlights the growing insincerity of Shyu?s personal brand, his decision to chase after the digital money trail and general abuses of free speech to manipulate the audience into publically thinking only positive things about his associations and affiliations.
This criticism landed Tren Black with two copyright strikes on his fledgling channel, with an offer of monetary gain in exchange for a promotional spot as the resolution. This kind of action indicates that the issue is not one relating to copyright ? but rather an inability to deal with bad press.
What The Channel is Actually About
It?s been a while since I?ve watched anything from The TeachLead ? in part because I?ve outgrown his content and his presentation style for his how to make a million dollars kind of content is not really my kind of thing, especially when they come with secrets and a hefty price tag.
The more he gears his content towards ways to make money, how he?s made his money and anything money related, the more he?s starting to sound like the dropshipping ads that run for 30 minutes with no skip option before the 2-minute mark ? before the actual video you?re trying to watch.
While it is arguable that he?s trying to move his content towards more lucrative topics, he is still holding onto the programmer demographic by releasing an actual coding tutorial.
It?s hard to pinpoint exactly what he stands and what his channel is truly about ? a sort of brand confusion as he goes through the motions of his mid-life crisis. Is he a developer? or is he that person that tells you how to make your first million? Is he a product reviewer? or just doing it for the money?
But then again, he is only human and humans tend to make mistakes.
The way Patrick Shyu deals with online negativity was not handled well. There is a difference between trolls and constructive criticism, a trend that the Internet and its personalities on a whole need to figure out and learn.
While no one wants bad press, it comes part and parcel with anything online related. In a similar vein to real life ? you can?t be liked everywhere. It gets even worse when you offer up something in exchange for money and it doesn?t live up to value it proposes.
As the TechLead figures out his footing, his growth has stalled for the interim. What we do know is that he?s after the money and any form of personal satisfaction or growth he gets from the endeavors is still debatable.
And perhaps this is the reason why he?s starting to stall. As the world moves towards a more humanistic approach towards everything, TechLead has grown to become one of the ?bigger? guys that others look up to. His every social movement is being watched, judged and evaluated. He is no longer that guy that used to work at Google and Facebook.
He?s an influencer now ? a public figure and Internet celebrity that?s starting to become too overt with his content. When the selling becomes more than the actual value of the content, people are capable of looking elsewhere ? especially developers.