YouTube Next is a division of YouTube charged with fostering burgeoning online video talent and helping that talent make the transition from promising online video amateur to talented online video professional.

YouTube Next exists because it’s in YouTube’s best interest for everyone on YouTube to get a $#!% ton of views.

The site generates revenue by way of advertising. The more people who watch videos produced by YouTube Partners (the selected channels on which YouTube displays advertising), the more advertising those people will see and the more revenue YouTube will generate. And one way to get more people to watch more videos produced by YouTube Partners is by giving those people better content to watch.

YouTube Next trains Partners with potential on best production practices, how to engage in the YouTube community, how to use the site’s tools, and how to maximize their own video views. It’s a win-win situation. YouTube gets more quality programming against which it can sell advertising, and fledgling content creators can amass the skills necessary to help them increase their views, which will then help them generate enough revenue to quit their day jobs (if they haven’t left them already) and focus on making videos.

YouTube Next Creators is a program put on by YouTube Next. It’s essentially a crash course for select individuals in which YouTube sees promise. Those invited to participate are awarded with classes and mentoring by YouTube big wigs, in addition to cash prizes. It’s an initiative YouTube Next has done a few times, first with a cross-section of all kinds of YouTubers, then with trainers and chefs, and now with vloggers.

The 16 individuals selected to be in YouTube Next Vlogger were announced this week. They will be mentored in part by iJustine and Natalie Tran during three months of courses taught by way of Google+ Hangouts. Each will also receive $5,000 worth of video equipment and $10,000 worth of promotion on Youtube (which is not much compared to the $200 million the site will be using to market its Original Channels, but still, a very good start).

The 16 vloggers are known on YouTube by the following names:

Those 16 channels have collectively already aggregated more than 125 million views. That’s not a bad start! But YouTube is hoping, under the guidance of YouTube Next, they can do better. Here’s a look at what could be the next Phil DeFranco’s and Jenna Marbles of the internet. Be sure to subscribe so you reminisce about how you watched them when.

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