YouTube! Yeah, don’t act like you don’t know what I am talking about. YouTube has been around for the past six years, being founded in February of 2005, and has completely changed the landscape of social media and the Internet in general.
YouTube has given us millions of videos to watch and eat away our time, and the idea is simple enough: someone uses a camera of some sort to shoot a video, and the video can then be uploaded and viewed by millions of visitors.
YouTube has made some people famous and has had detrimental effects on others. From here on out I’m going to recall my choices for the top five viral YouTube videos.
“The Evolution of Dance”
This video is nothing more than a guy on a stage, sporting an Orange Crush shirt and faded jeans. If you toss in 50 years of hit songs, you can add over 167 million YouTube views to the equation. So why has this video attracted such a following? It was posted in 2006 and is considered to be one of YouTube’s original viral videos. But there is a simple truth behind this video: it is true. The dance moves portrayed are a very realistic depiction and therefore can resonate with people of all audiences.
Before you start to hate on me for putting this in my list, bear with me. Justin Bieber is a machine. He is a child superstar who has used the power of social media to his advantage. Having found fame because of YouTube, it is only fitting that his video for “Baby” is currently the No. 1 viewed video on YouTube. Nearing half a billion views, “Baby” seems to be unstoppable and most definitely memorable.
“Miss Teen USA 2007 — South Carolina Answers a Question”
In August of 2007, a video emerged on YouTube that has stained the image of the United States as well as beauty queens forever. When asked the question: “Recent polls have shown a fifth of Americans can’t locate the U.S. on a world map. Why do you think this is?” Caitlin Upton responded with the most absurd answer that anyone could have uttered. The fact is, what she said made no sense, as she rattled off a list of countries and phrases such as: “such as.”
“Charlie Bit My Finger — Again!”
This 56-second video had attracted almost 300 million views. But why? Two kids on a couch, one sticks his finger in the others mouth and then it gets bitten. Who would have thought, right? But these are not any two kids. The child who gets bitten and screams happens to have an English accent, therefore increasing the cute factor of this video one hundred fold.
“Leave Britney Alone!”
Chris Crocker posted a legendary video telling people to stop making fun of Brittany Spears. While some people stopped making fun of Britney, the majority of people just started making fun of Chris.
When you take a good look at it, we have built our culture around the Internet. I have said it time and time again, but it rings true each time and has yet to change. We idolize YouTube sensations and celebrities. On one hand YouTube has made people, i.e. Justin Bieber, while on the other it has broken people — just take a look at Miss South Carolina. But either way, there is no forecast saying that YouTube will become any less popular — if anything, its popularity continues to rise.