When I think of street interviews, it takes me back to the days of seeing them on late night talk shows with correspondents hitting the streets of New York and Los Angeles. Once I got a little bit older (and i think wiser), I realized that shit was half real, half scripted. What about the local news ones where they interviewed tired, pissed off commuters going to their boring, monotonous 9-5? With the introduction of Youtube and social media, a bunch of young creators started to take the "on the street" interview style to those platforms. Getting a unbiased, unscripted reaction to a question on camera gives the internet, social media, and people a look into the minds of random strangers that they may encounter out in the world. It's entertaining, funny, weird as hell, or a mix of all the above. You can find IG pages where interviewers have built a following off this interview style, Youtube channels dedicated to it, and plenty of clips on Tik Tok too.
With the over abundance of creators and content, you have to stand out to get noticed. If it isn't you as a creator or something about your brand, then it has to be the content you are creating. When you have all three, you have potential. One Youtube channel that sticks out from the rest to me is The Side Dude. It's a channel run by Nigel, where he documents the reactions of drunk 20 somethings, plays Ohio University vs. OSU Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grade, "How Many Inches Can You Take?" with strangers, and a whole lot of other shit. What sets him apart is his personality, how he is able to play on the guests' reaction, editing, and the visuals. We talked to Nigel about what he does, the channel, how he started, and what he gets out of doing this shit, amongst other things.
What is “The Side Dude”? Who is “The Side Dude”? Is it a team, a couple of individuals, or just one person?
The Side Dude is a youtube channel that i created a few years ago, it started at my college and a few of my friends guest starred in the vids since then, but it's just one person.
Where did the idea of “The Side Dude” and the “on the street” interview style come from? When did it start?
It started at Ohio University, my friend and I saw an opportunity to make videos with very little competition. This was in Athens, ohio, a town where there's not much to do besides partying.
At what point did the idea of an “on the street" interview style turn into filming videos, uploading, building a channel, and a brand out of it?
Around the second or third video, the popularity of the channel skyrocketed, now the goal is to basically make it into an icon.
What did you think when filming the first couple videos and putting it all into play? Did you not know what to expect? No expectations? How did you feel?
Life is gonna happen, that's my motto. I had no expectations, I went about it with the mindset that says.. "Let's just make a killer vid."
It does not seem too hard to get people to talk on camera and tell you their opinion about shit. Do you approach them, do they approach you first, how does it happen? Do people see you filming and come up to you?
I just ask them if they wanna be in a Youtube video. I've done the filming while approaching people approach, and if they're cool with it, then that's how it works.
You meet a wide range of people when you are out here making content. You are at colleges (including Ohio University, one of the biggest party schools) and in areas of the city where people party at. Is there any content or shit someone did/said that did not make it onto your channel, into a video, or that you had to cut out because it was too wild to include?
Oh yeah, I get Instagram Dms all the time of people not wanting to be seen, it's understandable at times. I wouldn't want people knowing that I did crack if I was a teacher.
What do you like about being out here, interviewing people, and all the random shit that happens while you are out here making content?
It's fun creating entertaining videos, it's almost like leaving your mark on the world.
What sets The Side Dude apart from social media personalities, fellow Youtubers, and others who are trying to do similar street interview styles? What do you think it is about you, the channel, and the brand that draw people to it?
It's the editing in the videos and the video design. But I'm just getting started.
What do you want people to get out of watching your videos and your channel?
I want people to smile and subscribe.
What’s your favorite video you’ve made so far?
I would say the Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader video was the most fun to create.
Where do you plan to go with The Side Dude in the long run? What do you plan on doing in 2022 and the future that builds on what you are already creating? What should we expect from you in general in 2022?
Expect more, I've got some pretty wild plans and my long term goal is to attain 50 million subs. Tune in, We're going to be posting alot more.