(from the left) Producing director Lee Na-ra, Lee Young-ja, Kim Sook, Banzz, SSIN, Yumdaeng, and BuzzBean at the press conference for ‘LAN Life’. / Photo = Lee Seung-hyun @Ish87

You might think that online creators have an easy job where they get a lot of gifts for just uploading a short, 10-minute video and putting their makeup on in their rooms. In actuality, a great deal of research and effort goes on behind the scenes. You have to study up on cameras and known everything about editing, planning, directing, and audio.

The above quote comes from first generation beauty YouTuber SSIN who attended the press conference for JTBC’s LAN Life – How Creators Live (hereafter LAN Life), which took place on June 5th at JTBC Hall in Sangam-dong, Seoul.

LAN Life is an entertainment program that will feature those who have become cultural icons for the younger generation – online content creators. Audiences will get to observe their daily lives and see what these creators are like when they turn their cameras off. Comediennes Lee Young-ja and Kim Sook and JR from NU’EST W were called on to take on hosting duties.

Producing director Lee Na-ra at the press conference for ‘LAN Life’. / Photo = Lee Seung-hyun @Ish87

Producing director Lee Na-ra revealed, When we first started to plan out the show, the thing that determined our destiny was the question of who our creators would be. The people that immediately came to mind were the four people here (Banzz, SSIN, Yumdaeng, BuzzBean). We were happy that we were able to cast the people that were on our wish list from the beginning.”

She added, I thought that even veterans could feel awkward about doing a TV program, so it gave me a sense of relief to have Lee Young-ja and Kim Sook come on board as our hosts. We first invited JR as a special guests for our first two episodes, but then we realized that he knew much more about the content of our four creators than we thought he did. We quickly offered him a position as a regular host because we thought he could be of great help.”

Putting a spotlight on the lives of these “online celebrities” through the medium of TV is no longer a new or unexpected concept. This isn’t the first time these creators have been on TV, and audiences are now familiar with the format of observational variety shows like I Live Alone and Point of Omniscient Interference.

In response, Lee Na-ra emphasized the following: “At first, we worried about how we would differentiate ourselves as an observational variety show. But our biggest goal is to reveal the other side of online content creators. Our program is like a one-plus-one deal. As we take a glimpse at the daily lives of these creators, we simultaneously focus on their content. We believe this will be our point of differentiation.” 

She went on to explain, There’s this perception that online creators can make easy money by just uploading a 10-minute video. We want to change this preconceived notion. We’ve come to the realization that they’re not like actors with great showmanship; each individual is a ‘producer’. For the generations of people who can’t understand these creators, we want to show their awe-inspiring philosophy; for the generations who know a lot about these creators, we want to show what they’re like behind the scenes.”

BuzzBean commented, I’ve been on TV before, but this is my first time being on such a big variety program.” He added, “Because it’s an observational variety show, the producers were very involved. I’m trying to learn as much as I can so I can quickly construct a system like this for internet broadcasts.”

Online content creator Yumdaeng at the press conference for ‘LAN Life’. / Photo = Lee Seung-hyun @Ish87

Yumdaeng said, I’ve been doing this for 18 years – since the first time that internet broadcasts came into existence. I never knew a day like this would come. I’m curious myself to see how much one-person media formats will develop in the future. It’s an honor to be working with excellent producers and castmates. Coming to the broadcasting station has given me a lot of motivation.” 

She went on to say, Not everyone can be good in school. Some people eat well, some are good at games, and some are good with makeup. There aren’t many opportunities in the real world to foster your talents, but [the opportunities] are limitless on YouTube. I also want to show the educational side of one-person creators through this program.”

Translated by Jennifer Earwood