[Infographic] YouTube's Top 1,000 Channels Reveal An Industry Taking Shape

YouTube is still the pesky younger sibling of television, which is the wicked uncle of Hollywood. But the social video site is slowly becoming a formidable medium in its own right, creating new business models and spheres of influence for - literally - a million rising stars.

OpenSlate, which describes its services as delivering “actionable information about the value of online video to advertisers,” recently put together an infographic analyzing the top 1,000 YouTube channels.

Some of the findings are mind-blowing, like the fact that over one million YouTubers run ads on their content. To put it another way, YouTube writes checks to more than one million people monthly. That's more than the U.S. television industry employs.

The highest-performing 1,000 make a cool six figures a year. According to OpenSlate, the average revenue for the top 1,000 channels is $23,000 a month for an average annual payout of $276,000. (Contrary to popular belief, YouTube money is not easy money. Many of the top YouTubers have been at it for years. They produce content regularly, and employ cameramen, editors, researchers, managers and writers.)

OpenSlate’s stats also showcase how influential these top YouTubers are. In the past 30 days, the top 1,000 generated more than 87 million social interactions (including comments, favorites, and ratings) on the site. Those interactions don't stop at YouTube either; they spill out onto Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr (which was not included in OpenSlate's research).

The data also sheds light on YouTube's premium content project, known as Original Channels. 23 of the 100 Original Channels made it into the top 1,000 in under a year. That's especially impressive considering most of the top 1,000 have been on YouTube since as early as 2007.  

Infographic created by OpenSlate - Discover the New Premium in Online Video.