In class we discussed the reasons why things spread by looking at an article by Maria Konnikova. She suggests that they spread due to emotions, social currency, arousal, memories, practical value and story quality. This might work for some things but what about YouTube? 48 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. You got that right! TWO days of video every minute! Okay maybe that isn’t super surprising but still that’s a hell of a lot of videos. Bo Burnham, the comedian and musician for Massachusetts, didn’t get famous from performing late night at comedy clubs or open mic nights. But how? It was all because he posted his comedic songs on YouTube and they gained popularity. Was it luck? Maybe.
In his TED Talk, Kevin Allocca from YouTube has a few why the famous videos “go viral”. A video that catches a “tastemaker’s attention, lends itself to remixing and unexpectedness will get you view after view. A company called Mekanism told Forbes that they have cracked the science behind “going viral” and it is not just shear luck. First off you need to grab the attention of your viewers. “Nothing happens until attention is captured.” Next it’s all about planning. What YouTube category that matches your video will make it easy to view your way up to the front page? What do you do after your launch plan? Well guess what, you have another plan so that you keep your popularity.
There may be many different ways and techniques to go viral and become famous but there is one thing. Is it really something you can formulate? Is it luck? What about Yosemitebear and his double rainbow? He sure didn’t plan on his millions of views.
Above is the original video that has over 42 million views and it was also shown on the comedy show Tosh.0.