A viral video is a recording that has been highly diffused, shared and spread by the Internet, whether by advertising or by other types of delivery such as e-mail, instant messages, through blogs, social media or websites. Their main characteristic is the hilarious content they have, many of them inspired in TV shows or amateur recordings, always with the aim of becoming viral.
Origin. The viral videos began in 1995 by e-mail with the first viral videos such as “The Spirit of Christmas” or “Dancing Baby”. After that, in 2005, with the release of the famous site YouTube and its first video “Meet me at the Zoo”, which does not have any particular content, however, it has more than 19.956.953 views.
Diffusing videos. In order to keep its public power, viral videos should have a hook or an attractive characteristic that can invite the audience to watch it. These hooks are able to become part of the viral video culture after being shown repeatedly with key signifiers. Sometimes the early view pattern of a viral video can be taken to forecast its climax in the future.
Today. Nowadays, there has been a boom of viral videos on video sharing sites like YouTube, different social media apps, such as Instagram and Facebook because of the availability of affordable digital cameras and smartphones. You can check the Kony 2012 video by Invisible Children, Inc., which is considered the most viral video in history and has over 34,000,000 views on its first day of upload. Another example is the Gangnam Style by PSY, which has been viewed over 2 billion times on YouTube and is one of the most viewed video in the history of that site.
Viral videos and studies. Because of the social impact of viral videos, they have been attracting even for experts, such as editors of YouTube, Time Magazine and personalities, such as Ray William Johnson, that have been carefully selecting viral videos for statistic and social studies.
Top 5 of Most Famous Viral Videos of All Time
Stars War Kids: this viral video was uploaded nine years ago by Jim Love. It has more than 30,287,377 views. It is about a child who is playing with a metal rod making moves like Darth Vader. It is definitely a video to laugh out loud.
Evolution of Dance: this video was also uploaded nine years ago and it has a number of 290,900,733 of reproductions. This viral video was uploaded by Jubson Laipply, and as its name indicates, a versatile dancer makes a review through dancing evolution. The music from different periods marks their impressive steps.
Zidane Headbutt: this is one of the examples of viral videos that came out from TV. In the video you can see the famous and unfortunate headbutt that hit Marco Materazzi’s chest during the World Cup Final of 2006. This was Zidane’s last game as a professional.
Baby Laughing: this video has 23,146,091 views and shows a baby laughing because –maybe his dad- is making jokes. This is the example of how famous a simple video can reach so many views.
Baby Panda sneezing: this video has more than 9,165,085 views and was uploaded five years ago. Apart from the tender and funny moment of the panda sneezing, the shock of the panda’s father gives even greater fun.