The UK Government’s 2022 Levelling Up the United Kingdom policy agenda on geographical disparities has addressed uneven economic development and social deprivation beyond London in regions like Yorkshire. The creative industries facilitate growth and productivity that could provide more opportunities for people across the country. However, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee’s 2022 report Influencer Culture: Lights, Camera, Inaction? reveals that creators struggle to build sustainable and decently-paid careers in the social media creator economy. This paper draws on a thematic analysis of policy, industry data, and interviews with 53 solo self-employed creators in Yorkshire. Creators use multiple video-sharing social media platforms, including YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok to produce, circulate, and monetise their content, while building an audience. The paper outlines levelling up policy silences and recommends action points to support regional diversity and inclusion in the creator economy in three key areas: revenue streams;professional training and networking spaces; and collective trade representation. The proposed recommendations raise implications for how public policy could support creators and a wider levelling up agenda. Support from governments and platforms could bolster digital creative industries and regional development, making it possible for more creators to establish stable and reasonably-paid careers.
|Publisher||Screen Industries Growth Network (SIGN)|
|Number of pages||26|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Oct 2023|