For millions of YouTube users, Shane Dawson is one of the most recognisable content creators the platform has ever seen. Since the creation of his channel back in September 2005, he has garnered over 15.5 million loyal subscribers - a number that is consistently rising - and has racked up over four billion views across everything he's put out on his channel since that point.
Marred with scandal and controversy on a number of occasions, Shane is somebody who reflects publicly on pretty much every aspect of his life; from his strained relationship with his father, to his struggles with self-worth and body image. Being so open and honest has made him an incredibly relatable figure, and the YouTuber is sent thousands of messages daily via social media from fans who want to thank him for speaking out about his issues.
Shane has admitted that he had points in his career where he felt stagnant. Creating videos that were fun and fluffy and pretty much carbon copies of what every successful YouTuber was putting out was all very well and good, and brought in millions more views for the channel, but it wasn't allowing him to feel as fulfilled as he would have liked. Then, around eight months ago, his channel went through probably the most dramatic change it had ever seen.
Suddenly, audiences had to wait a while longer for Shane's videos to be uploaded. Many of them would be turned into three-part series, with hundreds of hours of footage being edited down throughout the night by Shane and his (very easy on the eye, adorable, giggling) cameraman, Andrew.
As viewers, we'd be taken on ghost hunts with Shane, his boyfriend Ryland, sister-in-law Morgan, and best friend Garrett (not forgetting Andrew who would catch every second on camera!). We'd see Shane surprise those closest to him in various ways, whether that be setting them up on blind dates, or in one recent case, bringing his mother Teresa to meet her all-time favourite celebrity, Kathy Griffin.
Shane would even collaborate with other YouTubers, with one of his most successful series coming when he spent some time with Bunny Meyer, aka grav3yardgirl to help her investigate why her channel wasn't seeing as many views as it had done at its peak. It was an eye-opening trio of videos not just for Bunny's fans, who were allowed a look into her life like never before, but YouTube's community as a whole. Shane was doing something revolutionary on the website, and it saw him commended by hundreds of his peers.
The spike Shane has recently seen in new subscribers to his channel isn't just a coincidence; it's a product of the incredible content he's now creating. Who can forget the brilliant eye-opening series that delved into the chaos that had ruined the first ever Tanacon event?
Currently in the midst of his fantastic Secret World of Jeffree Star five-parter, fans are once again being allowed a no-holds-barred look into a world that had, up until this point, been alien to them.
In putting together these television shows, (because make no mistake, that's exactly what he is creating at this point), Shane is changing the world of entertainment forever. He's showing that no matter where you are, where you come from, or what hand life has dealt you, you have the ability to chase your dreams and turn them into a reality, so long as you're willing to put in the hard work and dedication.
Sure, there will be speed bumps along the way, and some people will do anything in their power to tear you down out of sheer jealousy, but if you've got the thick skin you need for your area of expertise, anything is possible. It's cheesy and cliché, but it's true.
For all of this, he's somebody who should be celebrated. Whichever direction he chooses to go in next, he can be sure he'll have millions of eyes watching his every move. Whilst really thinking about that may be quite a scary prospect, Shane's somebody with the grit to see this through. I for one cannot wait to see what's right round the corner.