Home Latest The Internet Reacts To The Fine Brothers (UPDATED)
The Internet Reacts To The Fine Brothers (UPDATED)

The Internet Reacts To The Fine Brothers (UPDATED)


UPDATE: As of last night, The Fine Brothers have announced they are ceasing to trademark the term “React” and have abandoned their plans for ‘React World’. In a Medium post, they stated, “We realize we built a system that could easily be used for wrong. We are fixing that.” Adding, “The reality that trademarks like these could be used to theoretically give companies (including ours) the power to police and control online video is a valid concern, and though we can assert our intentions are pure, there’s no way to prove them.”

They point out that specifically, the application for trademark is dead as are the plans for ‘React World’.

You can read our original story below:

Benny and Rafi Fine are names that might not resonate with every reader, but their moniker of The Fine Brothers may ring more clearly to those who are familiar with their “Kids/Teenagers/Elders react to series on YouTube. Chances are that If you frequent the streaming service on a regular basis, you will have at one stage run into one of their videos. The content they produce is a charming experiment of sorts, where individuals of different demographics are chosen to react to various media selected by the subscribers of the channel. Conceptually, it is an old hat that has been used on television to great effect in the past, but has found a massive audience within the YouTube community who create this style of content known as “reaction” videos.

Recently, The Fine Brothers have come under scrutiny for their attempted trademark of the word “react”. In addition to this, a wider expansion of their ‘React to series titled ‘React World’ has been ridiculed for the implications and uncertainty that it brings into question in regards to the content that does not fall under the FineBros banner. To trademark a word so commonly used by YouTubers (due to a concept that is by no means original) seems obscene, yet the claimed notion behind the movement was simply to increase the scope of their brand. An update video (since deleted) addressing the major backlash that their campaign has caused has drawn further questions about the intention of the content creators.
The need for this update comes from their own negative actions on the subject in recent years. In the past, they have been found to have an adverse opinion about others using the reaction format “just like their show”.
Their contradictory thoughts on the matter have led to fellow YouTubers calling them out on the ludicrousness of their money grabbing attempts.
Known as of now, The Fine Brothers have flagged videos that have used the common words of “kids” and “react” using their status as a partner to get them actively taken down. This is corroborated by many accounts, some with as few as 200 subscribers. This kind of power play makes the trademark situation a scary prospect given that they could decide that anything that is considered a reaction video can be taken down at their request. An unfortunate note of this is the vagueness of the trademark terms that suggest foul play could easily be done against other major channels that post frequent reaction content. Now, despite what has been just said, this could all still be a grand misunderstanding of their character, or it would be, if not for ‘React World’. The basis of ‘React World’ involves in essence, a network of users sending The Fine Brothers reaction content and being exposed to a wider audience, but ultimately paying a percentage of whatever revenue you make direct to the piggy bank of the overstuffed accounts of the New York brothers.
This greed has garnered the wrath of the internet and caused a downward spiral of their subscriber count (which can be viewed here) that will be difficult to recover from without a formal apology. To date, the update video posted has become one of the highest disliked videos in YouTube history, mainly in part at the lack of sincerity a lot of us perceive from their words and body language. There is a sense of shifting the blame, despite being caught in several instances as having intention to create a monopoly on the reaction video market.
An irony of the whole situation is that The Fine Brothers copyright of “react” would have gone unnoticed had they not advertised it in their ‘React World’ announcement video. The fate of the two seems dismal at the moment, lending a curious thought as to what will become of the individuals featured in their reaction videos, some of whom have gained their own success on YouTube through different content. A collective online has relentlessly spammed each of The Fine Brothers react videos with remarks that parody the shady tactics that are being used.
Video-producing pioneers of the reaction videos have stepped forward to proclaim that the “react” format should be available for everyone as it has always been and to attempt to constrict something as simple as a human reaction is downright petty. Filming a human response to content that is not owned in itself is a touchy subject on Youtube, it is when you add the semantics into it of trying to capitalizes on people with extension beyond a hobby and interest, that is not just you being paid for your reactions (which is perfectly acceptable). It’s effectively in the nature of creating a business that functions to monetize typically free content off the backs of unknowing fledgling YouTubers who just want to their video to be seen without being flagged for infringement. Herein lies the inherent beef that the internet has with The Fine Brothers. It remains to be seen how this will all pan out, but right now it does not look good.
Moreover, legal professionals have also since weighed in, confirming our worst fears that The Fine Brothers ARE trying to trademark reaction content for themselves. Both elders and teens react have been copyrighted as titles and despite their best efforts to convince otherwise, they are looking to trademark reaction videos. You can read the full piece here.
We will update when the story progresses.