Valley is here to take you through the awards ceremony that celebrates the stars of YouTube. Hosted by internet sensation Jon Cozart, known for his original songs exploding with cultural commentary, the 7th Annual Streamy Awards were awkward, irreverent and bursting with the energy that encapsulates the Internet’s culture at the moment.
Unlike traditional award ceremonies like the Emmys and the Oscars, the only available viewing platform for the Streamys was, of course, “streaming” live on Twitter. Much like the content the event was celebrating, the awards ceremony was extremely candid and unfiltered, leaving in the genuine reactions of the winners in all their glory, including everything from penis jokes to f-bombs.
Everything about the ceremony was designed to be interactive with the audience. Below the viewing screen of the ceremony, there was a live feed of audience commentary using #streamys. Twitter users could even vote on which way they wanted Cozart to close out the ceremony.
Nominees for the awards were announced via pre-recorded videos made by popular content creators, including Casper Lee, Kandee Johnson, Simply Nailogical, Smosh Live and more. The creators used innovative methods to introduce the nominees and usually tossed in a bit of self-promo at the end, in true YouTuber fashion.
Jon Cozart definitely added some spice to the ceremony, performing two attention-grabbing, potentially-offensive original songs, one mocking the Streamy Awards themselves and the other repeatedly declaring that creator Jake Paul is YouTube’s Trump. The songs received surprised looks as well as applause from the creator-filled audience.
Popular YouTubers in attendance at the awards ceremony included Tyler Oakley, Grace Helbig, Dodie Clark, Lilly Singh, Jenna Marbles, Kandee Johnson and more.
One notable winner was Mamrie Hart, who won the Streamy for Acting in a Comedy for her work on Dirty 30, which she created with long-time friends and fellow YouTubers Hannah Hart—who is best known for her YouTube show My Drunk Kitchen, but has recently started a traditional-media show on Food Network called I Hart Food—and Grace Helbig.
Another big win went to Alyson Stone, best known for her early work on Disney channel and her role in the Cheaper by the Dozen films, in the Dance category. The actress, who has become a viral Internet sensation in her own right by sharing her dance skills on her YouTube channel, spoke in her acceptance speech about the significance of the way the Internet has given her the opportunity to pave her own way by creating her own platform.
“Thank you, fellow creators,” said Stoner. “You teach me that I don’t have to wait for the traditional formula to work in my favor. I can be and make my own formula, finally… I believe that there is room at the table for anyone who makes a seat for themselves, and that’s what I’m doing now, so I thank you for the support.”
Makeup artist Patrick Starr took home the Streamy Award for the Beauty category. In his acceptance speech, Starr proudly declared that he is a “man in makeup” and encouraged viewers to stay true to themselves.
“Life opens up when you do,” he said.
Comedy creator GloZell shared a memorable story of her first-ever meet and greet when she met a couple of fans and invited them to attend. Little did she know, they were there to attend the meet and greet along with the tremendous line of diverse people. GloZell was astonished not only by the impressive turnout, but by the diversity of her online community. She stated that she believes the Internet is a place of inclusivity that provides a space for viewers to connect and be accepted.
The awards ceremony concluded with an unexpected performance by the Village People, who performed a mashup of all of their most iconic hits.
The 2017 Streamy Awards will be remembered as a night that summed up online culture of the moment—awkward, outrageous, but present and together nonetheless.