The Vegans Of Youtube

When you hang out on youtube looking at short-form recipes as a way to stave off your anxiety, you notice something. You notice trends and patterns in the comments, because oh god, you started to read the comments.

It’s not uncommon for channels to do some vegan videos. Especially Buzzfeed’s Tasty brand, which is basically Listicle Recipes (and honestly, a really, really good format for it). Vegan recipes get hits, they get comments, they get likes. There’s even a channel that makes a point of collecting ‘accidentally vegan’ meals, where someone makes a vegan recipe video and doesn’t realise they’re recommending vegan food.

Here’s the thing.

On vegan videos, I mostly notice vegans talking about how nice it is, suggesting extra things to do for the video’s recipe, suggesting solutions for particular food allergies, and loudly non-vegan people making fun of it, or complaining about it. Like, you get that very clean split of ‘well wouldn’t this be better with tons of bacon‘ or ‘ugh, why you making these vegan videos?’

On non-vegan videos, I mostly notice vegans showing up in the comments to suggest to one another, ways they can make these dishes they’re watching vegan. They aren’t saying this recipe should be different.

Now I know part of this is moderation! Moderators are more likely, I suspect, to let go a huffing and puffing non-vegan comment than their equivalent, which might be a vegan talking pointedly about how you’re ruining this food with all that meat.

Whatever the reason, it’s pretty weird.

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