A lot of people might not be aware of who 'Ali-A' is but to those interested in computer games and especially Call of Duty, he is one of the go-to guys for interesting YouTube content and gameplay.
Why is this deserving of a letter you might ask? Well with over 6.5 million followers he has more of a presence than the likes of formulaic pop stars that young kids are told to idolise and he is proof of the potential the internet has for young people to make a name for themselves and make money.
I wasn't initially compelled to write a letter about this, not until I overheard a 9-year-old having dinner with his parents in a restaurant in London. The boy said he wanted to start a YouTube channel and that you can make money out of it, at which point his dad snapped "what kind of career is that?! You need a real job!".
First of all I was shocked that as a parent he was so short with an obviously bright and enthusiastic young boy and secondly the fact that he wasn't supporting his son's own desire to create something and share it with people. Of course not everyone is going to have a successful YouTube channel but it can be a great starting point for people to take initiative and develop their skills.
To that dad I wish I had said "wait a second! I bet this guy Ali-A is making more money sat at home enjoying himself than you are in your 'real' job".
There is the idea that it is easy to create a successful internet page or YouTube channel but it takes the ability to learn, adapt and be committed to make it a success. Are these the qualities that a dad wouldn't want to see in his kid?
A lot of young people get stick for being lazy or playing on their computers too much, not investing time in the 'real' world but there is an argument that being online gives you equally as strong relationships with people and why not bond with people who you enjoy spending time with.
There are some really young and successful YouTubers out there who make thousands a weeks from endorsements and views and if this is something your child has an interest in then is there really a valid reason why you shouldn't let them entertain the idea...what else are they going to be doing? Watching TV perhaps?
So I think the likes of Ali-A are a great example to young people of how dedication and hard work can earn you a career out of your hobbies and what kid wouldn't want to be paid to play xbox or playstation?!