Why This Channel Opts Out of AdSense 🏄

Action sport group Sickos shares their brand strategy

Good morning. Many have described the draw of TikTok’s algorithm, but maybe none so simply as creator Celeste Aria. In her “Dorito Theory” video, she suggests swiping on TikTok is so addictive because it is inherently unsatisfying. Like eating a Dorito…once you have one, you want more.

Inside Sickos’ Brand Strategy

Kaden Sponhauer, Jackson Lebsack, Will Crumpacker, (front row) Charlie Cohn, Maks Moses, and Forest Lawson, the band of longtime friends who run Sickos out of Hood River, Oregon / Sickos

Creator group Sickos’ 370K subscribers know what they're in for in each video: six friends traveling the world doing extreme sports and sharing life experiences, a mix of unique music from artists like Nas, TV on the Radio, and The Jackson 5, and notably? No AdSense.

Why? YouTube doesn’t allow creators to monetize videos via AdSense that use copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder.

But Sickos passes on AdSense by design: “There’s something to be said about how much music impacts people and how much it impacts a video and a feeling,” Jackson Lebsack, a member of the six-person creator group, told us.

That’s because music makes their content come to life.

“We have conversations on what key a song is in, and whether it brings the energy up or down,” group member Maks Moses said. “Looking back at our videos, would we love them as much without these classic songs that have these memories attached to them?”

FWIW: Opting out of AdSense was easier two years ago when Sickos had 2 million channel views. Now that the channel has brought in over 30 million views since 2022, the group is leaving more money on the table.

  • YouTube AdSense earnings can range widely for creators depending on factors like type of content and audience location. A typical range for long-form videos can be from $5-7 per 1,000 views according to HootSuite. In theory, the channel could’ve earned over six figures from their total views since it started in 2021.

  • But Sickos monetizes in different ways, including brand deals with MVMT, Moto Winch, DraftKings, and more. Their clothing brand sells hand-sewn fleece beanies, sweatshirts, and tees too.

Looking ahead: Sickos wants to reach 1M views a video and branch out into podcasting to share more of their action sports lifestyle. “Hopefully people see this as a lot more than just a YouTube channel of some dudes doing stupid stuff,” Lebsack told us. “It’s a vision that we want to preach to the world to get people out there, see the beauty in it, and do action sports.”

NYC Creator Workspace 368 Closes Its Doors

368 has hosted events from The Publish Press’ pizza party (1), to Airrack’s pizza party (2), a concert for NYC-based artists Infinity Song (3), and more / The Publish Press, 368

Studio 368, the NYC creator workspace cofounded by Casey Neistat in 2018, is shutting down, the studio announced on Instagram.

What made 368 special? “It wasn’t a super exclusive club or anything…you felt when you walked in that this was a place meant to uplift creators,” filmmaker and 368 member Alexandra Robinson told us.

  • While some members (like Robinson) held dedicated desks and 24/7 access, the space was free to use and offered resources such as camera and lighting equipment.

  • 368 supported itself through events and commercial shoots with brands including Adobe—enlisting community members to help produce them.

Zoom out: Robinson believes 368’s lasting legacy will be how it helped creatives connect and collaborate on projects. She met her writing partner, Danny Kabouni, at the studio not long after moving to NYC.

“Trent from Sidetalk would be sitting on the couch, editing something that people all across the country (and especially the city) were watching,” Robinson told us. “Or Gabe DeSanti, working on his new series…all these pieces of internet history came from this one hub in New York City, and I think people will definitely remember it.”

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Hank and John Green’s Livestream Breaks Charity Record

Hank Green (left) and John Green (right) of the Vlogbrothers break their record for how much they’ve raised during their annual “Project for Awesome” charity livestream / Good Good Good

Hank and John Green hosted their 17th annual “Project for Awesome” (P4A) charity livestream over the weekend, raising a record-breaking $3.4 million for nonprofits such as Partners in Health and Save the Children.

How it works: Green brothers fans nominate nonprofits via video before the 48-hour livestream begins.

  • During the stream, Hank and John do everything from interview experts to shave their facial hair.

  • As the brothers are live, viewers can vote for nonprofits that resonate with them, donate to the P4A fund, and receive special perks such as t-shirts or exclusive podcast episodes.

Go deeper: Listen to Hank Green speak more on his YouTube journey and fight with cancer on today’s episode of The Colin and Samir Show.

👀 Creator Moves

  • Zac Alsop is hiring a video editor to shoot and edit projects for his London-based YouTube channel.

  • ContentOps is hiring a social media manager to create original content for a travel-focused newsletter brand.

  • Hope Allen is hiring four video editors to assemble raw audio and video footage.

🔥 Press Worthy

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