With the increasing popularity of the internet in recent years, a new fad of viral videos has swept the nation. Viral videos are videos that become popularity at alarming speeds via the internet. Viral videos can gain millions of views in as little as a day. Viral videos can cause massive amounts of (sometimes unwanted) attention. In March of 2011, a girl named Rebecca Black released a music video titled “Friday” that went viral. It was a song that people loved to hate for its annoying lyrics and stuck-in-your-head tune, but mostly people loved to hate on the 13-year-old’s voice. It was removed from YouTube three months later, but it already had over 167 million views. It is the 22nd most watched video of all time on YouTube. The video was posted again in September of 2011.
More recently, viral videos have become “fads.” In July 2012, Korean pop singer Psy released his first single off his sixth album entitled “Gangnam Style” and he had no idea what would become of his song or his career. Psy has had 18 singles prior to Gangnam Style, but after that song, everyone in the world knew his name. The music video for this song went viral and became the first YouTube video to reach 1 billion views in December of 2012. As of March 2014, it was been viewed over 1.9 billion times and is the most watched video on YouTube. The dance that is depicted in the video has become a popular dance that millions have recreated all over the world.
The next fad to sweep the nation was the Harlem Shake. The Harlem Shake videos are only 30 seconds long and consist of a group of people usually just standing around and when the beat drops, the same people are all in crazy outfits and dancing wildly for the remainder of the video. After this video went viral last February, thousands of Harlem Shake parodies were being uploaded to YouTube by the day. Bloomsburg University was no different and created our very own Harlem Shake video.
The internet has allowed for these viral videos to exist. People share them on all forms of social media which peaks peoples curiosity and simply adds to the view count of these videos. I remember watching “Friday” for the first time because I just had to know what all the buzz was about, and the same went for “Gangnam Style.” When there is one topic that everyone is talking about, no one wants to be out of the loop. There is a website that will keep you updated on all viral videos that you can find here.