If you have stumbled upon YouTube, you may know someone called Joe Jitsukawa. In fact, you may know him for being a part of JustKiddingFilms and JustKiddingNews. But who is he really?
Joe Jitsukawa is a serial entrepreneur, comedian, investor and public speaker. He was born and raised in Los Angeles, and grew up surrounded by the growing gang culture in LA. He was actually labeled delinquent and a misfit growing up.
“I decided to change my life around when I was 18. I went from not knowing what a GPA was in high school to graduating top of my class in college, and eventually I quit my 9-5 job to pursue my passion, which is comedy.” Joe says.
Tired of the regular 9-5 job, Joe quit and co-founded JustKiddingFilms, a comedy YouTube channel in 2007. Through this channel, Joe and his team of friends shoot comedic sketches through which they teach good things “in a bad way.”
“We eventually branched out into other channels like JustKiddingNews, where we talk about current topics with a group of six friends. This has become our main channel.” Joe says.
JustKiddingNews has almost two million subscribers as of April 2020, with a growing fanbase that is constantly engaged, leaving thousands of comments in each video, as well as following the creators of the content, Joe included.
Besides YouTube, Joe has also found success in different business ventures, such as apparel, consulting, e-commerce, and investing. He likes advising and investing in several businesses, including a growing matcha franchise in LA called Junbi.
“Since 2007, we have amassed over five million subscribers and over three billion views, and are still going strong.” Joe shares.
Even though these numbers sound crazy, Joe and his team have been able to achieve this while building a great lifestyle, mostly because the team is made up of friends.
“What is more important than the numbers is that I get to work everyday with my closest friends and have a fun time doing so. We have been able to support over 15 full time staff members through our many years of YouTube, along with tons of benefits for our staff like bi-annual bonuses and two months of time off per year.” Joe explains.
This is because Joe truly believes in a good work environment where everyone thrives and is happy with their work. This is why JustKiddingNews is still going strong, even despite the COVID-19 pandemic. They have been able to ensure the creation of content for dissemination, as well as the pay of their staff.
“Many people believe that you can’t make a living off of your passion, but I have made a career and monetized all of the things that I am passionate about: comedy, hanging out with friends and family, fashion, food, etc.” Joe says.
Through it all, Joe wants to be the pioneer in helping those who feel trapped in a career they do not like, and help people move towards something they are passionate about. In fact, Joe has been invited to dozens of campuses throughout the U.S. to speak precisely about his life story and his achievements.
“My biggest accomplishment to date is that everyday I receive messages from fans that the content that we’ve shared has affected them positively, whether it’s in business, finances, emotionally, mentally or even just keeping them company on a long commute.” Joe shares.
Joe has always been passionate about helping others, and he attempts to always do this, both through his business and personal experience and through comedy. This is why he has created a free online education platform that now provides over 20 thousand students with basic life skills and self improvement education.
“For over a decade, I have received the same messages from people asking for advice on simple life topics like jobs, passion, budgeting and finance, credit, and all the other things that we should have been taught in school.” Joe says.
Through his platforms, Joe always shared his answers to these questions when he could. But it quickly became overwhelming to answer every single question, so he decided to find a better solution and created a free online education platform called Joemalian Academy.