This is a developing story. Subsequent major updates on this story will be updated here accordingly.
Following a slew of other VTuber and entities launching their own VTuber awards show, ranging from the Small VTuber Awards by Petrichoral, as well as the upcoming ones from Filian and Takahata; a new entity has announced their own “Global VTuber Awards” show which will be held live in Tokyo in December this year.
There is just one caveat: This was the first time the entity behind it, Logcast, is holding such awards. Moreover, said company is still relatively unknown to the larger VTubing community.
The question is: Just what is this Global VTuber Awards show, and what is Logcast, the company behind it, doing?
What We Know About Logcast
Logcast, currently headed by its CEO Leni Andronicos, describes itself as a platform where online creators can earn from sharing their audio-centric content, which includes audio clips (behind-the-scenes recordings, day-in-the-life reports), as well as giving fans the chance to take part in virtual meet-and-greet events, and earn digital "limited-edition" collectibles.
- On May this year, they announced the launch of Oshi, a new service described as “a platform that connects idols like music artists, VTubers, anime stars and voice actors with fans across the globe”.
- Details on the new platform were further expanded on an interview with Andronicos with The Japan Times, which notes that the service will merge the growing markets of VTubing and idol culture.
- It is worth noting, however, that Andronicos groups VTubers to the wider realm of virtual influencers and the growing Web3 scene, which includes utilization of the metaverse and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which is echoed through Logcast’s non-fungible memories (NFMs).
Following a month after its launch, Logcast has announced that several Warner Music artists have signed in their platform, adding that “[it] has offered fans an unprecedented opportunity to delve into the personalities of these digital entertainers beyond their visual avatars.”
It is also worth adding that Logcast is one of the 11 startups selected by Shibuya Startups for its “UP by Shibuya Startup Support” initiative to support the growth of international startups in the Japanese market. Other supported startups in the initiative include TOTEMO, an NFT auction house; entertainment platform startup Stayge Labs; generative AI image app 8GLabs; among others.
Why Questions Are Raised
As part of its initiative, Logcast has announced the launch of its own Global VTuber Awards show. While there were some VTubers who had shown optimism for said initiative, a large chunk of VTubers and fans were quick to point out several concerns on said initiative:
- The utilization of generative AI and NFTs has long been a polarizing discussion within the VTubing community, with a large chunk of non-Japanese VTubers and fans opposed to said idea. However, it is worth noting that the overall Web3 industry in the Japanese market is growing at a constant rate, considering that Web3 adoption in said market has seen huge support from the public and private sectors.
- Many have pointed out that Logcast had used AI-generated images for its promotional material of the VTuber awards, which has been mostly viewed in a negative light in the community.
- Recent blog posts by Logcast also suggest that it has frequently categorized VTubers under the general umbrella of virtual avatars, as well as being related to the growing Web3 industry. In one of its blogs in July, it ‘positively’ wrote how AI is set to change the course of the content creator economy; while a blog they wrote in June detailed how AI can automate avatar personalities, which will cater to their forecasted growth of avatars than humans in the metaverse.
Further Understanding of Logcast, Oshi, and the VTuber Awards
Independent VTuber and interviewer NilesVT had the chance to interview Andronicos to get more details about their initiatives and their desire to expand into the VTubing scene. The full interview can be summed up through the following main points:
- Andronicos has admitted to the lack of transparency on the data inserted into the Global VTuber Awards, stating that the data will be used for communication purposes only, as well as anti-bot measures. They also added that the data will not be used to be signed up for its Oshi app.
- She also stated that the reason why they used AI art for its promotional material is to have "unbiased representation of VTubers." She then added that upon hearing feedback from the community, they will ask permission for VTubers to have their imagery be used for future promotional materials.
- When asked generally how Logcast creators earn, Andronicos answered in the context of the upcoming Oshi platform stating that 100% of the donation goes directly to the VTuber, while commissions on NFT/NFM material will have a 5% deduction commission by the company. She also added that there is strictly no advertising allowed on the platform.
A recent space conducted by the Global VTuber Awards team also continued to further respond to questions from the audience regarding their operations (recording and summary noted by NilesVT and Firozera).
- When asked on the 'duality' of why Logcast still denies the integration of AI/NFTs for the awards and Oshi despite said technologies still a core part of their company mantra, Andronicos notes that rather than viewing AI as a threat, it should be viewed as a 'friend' which could be helpful on assisting creators to efficiently use platform tools at their disposal. However, she did not comment when audience members asked on how AI, specifically generative AI, is a threat to the overall creative aspect of the VTubing space, and that it contradicts to the human nature behind VTubing itself.
- Meanwhile, further questions on how VTubers who will sign up to Oshi earn from their content were asked, and weren't directly answered in terms of specifying how the platform-talent revenue share will work out.
As of now, the Global VTuber Awards has now started its own nomination process, and will be hosting its awards show in a "secret location" located in Tokyo's Shibuya ward.
Special thanks to NilesVT and Firozera for assisting in the background and research for this feature.