YouTube: Why Did the Try Guys Leave Buzzfeed?
What happens when four creative guys come together to create a wildly popular YouTube series for a company like Buzzfeed? Well, eventually they leave to form their own production company and what appears to be a bromance for the ages. In April 2018, Eugene Lee Yang, Zach Kornfeld, Ned Fulmer, and Keith Habersberger walked away from their steady gigs with Buzzfeed to create their own company, 2nd Try LLC. With the announcement came a whole new world of content from the four who became beloved as Buzzfeed stars.
Why did The Try Guys leave Buzzfeed?
While plenty of people have walked away from Buzzfeed, The Try Guys decision to leave as a team, and take their series name with them was unique. According to the business’ launch video, the group walked away from the media giant so that they could further grow their business and develop new series. The team has plans to expand its following through tours and merchandise.
In fact, the team just announced that they have published a book. The book, The Hidden Power of F*cking Up is due to release on June 18, 2019, and is currently available for preorder. The nonfiction work tells the story of how four shy, nerdy guys developed into the Try Guys we all know and love.
Were they part of a mass exodus?
Starting in 2016 producers began leaving Buzzfeed en masse. Allegedly the problem began when two popular producers were fired from the company for violating a rather ironclad non-compete clause. The clause does not allow producers to work on any other projects, whether independently or as appearing guests while they are employed by the company.
Over two years, more than a dozen producers left the platform and spun out their own channels; including Safiya Nygaard, Chris Reiner, and Candace Lowry. Upon their departure, each content creator made a video outlining the reasons why they choose to leave the popular platform, and all seemed to cite similar issues with the contract they were expected to adhere to.
While the Try Guys all left Buzzfeed together, their departure seemed far more mutually beneficial. In short, the team was not part of the mass exodus and maintains a relationship with Buzzfeed and its CEO Jonah Peretti.
How did they manage to keep their intellectual property?
Content creators that have left the company have completely cut ties with their former employers. In fact, several creators have noted that had to wait a set amount of time to begin their own YouTube careers, but The Try Guys wanted to retain ownership over their video series concept, and in that desire, they had to strike a deal with Buzzfeed.
Content creators who work for the media giant do not traditionally retain the rights to their intellectual property, meaning any video concepts they create while working at Buzzfeed remain the property of Buzzfeed. To get the job done, Habersberger, Fulmer, Yang, and Kornfeld entered into a strategic partnership with the company.
Buzzfeed CEO, Jonah Peretti addressed the launching of the new channel in an article published on the platform. In the statement, he reiterated that Buzzfeed would remain the fifth try guy. The terms of the partnership remain confidential.