Hey kids, what time is it? It’s Viral Video Time!

27 07 2009

I’ve seen many videos that have “gone viral,” mostly catching up with them long after they spread through cyberspace like wildfire. But in the last few weeks, I’ve heard about two just as they were breaking.

Revenge is a dish best served on YouTube:

I caught a segment on CNN about singer Dave Carroll, of the Canadian singing duo Sons of Maxwell, and Carroll’s ode to insensitive airline customer service, “United Breaks Guitars”. The video had been posted online the day before, and had already racked up an impressive 300,000 hits. I loved the video, so I went to Carroll’s website and read the “long version” of his year-long, ultimately unsuccessful battle to get United Airlines to reimburse him for breaking his $3500 Taylor guitar. After he hit the last brick wall, Carroll made lemonades out of lemons and set out to write three songs about his travails and post them online, with the hope of getting a million views total.

Carroll got his million hits inside of a week. As of today, “United Breaks Guitars” has over four million hits. And United, as you might have expected, isn’t giving Carroll the cold shoulder anymore. He’s a star now — he’s had articles written about him from Los Angeles to Halifax, done countless interviews in print and on TV, and I understand he’s been inundated with offers for singing engagements. He still has two more songs to post, but his story already has a happy ending.

Best wedding intro ever:

My husband, of all people, found this one and showed it to me. It’s a video of a Minnesota couple and their wedding party entering the church for the ceremony, in a joyfully unconventional way…which no one in the audience had been told about in advance. Fabulous. It’s only been online for a week, and it’s up to nine million hits.

I was wondering when the press would hear about this one — and just now “The O’Reilly Factor” on Fox News did a segment on it. Alas, Bill O’Reilly was absolutely clueless; he didn’t get what all the fuss was about. But his two guests (and whoever told him to feature the video) understood just why it’s so special.

Go. Watch. Enjoy.




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