I was recently asked which videos I considered to be the best viral videos of all time. Six months later I had an answer. Below is a list, selected by number of views, number of days to reach 100 million views, and complete arbitrariness (Either because I love them, or because I despise them so much I’ve somehow watched them multiple times. Why do I do that?)
Best Change-making Video
The controversial Kony 2012 beat out Susan Boyle as the most rapidly spreading video ever. It reached 100 million views in just six days versus Boyle’s paltry eight. It is a thirty minute video which might as well be years when it comes to the length of the average viral video. But this video was an exception. Another exception is that this video deals with a serious social issue. A great example of the potential of viral videos to create change (and for fame to wreak havoc on their creators).
The Viral Video We Love to Hate
One of the few viral videos that consistently has more dislikes than likes. Why does it have hundreds of millions of views? If you haven’t seen it, check-it out. If you love to hate it, then watch it again. If you just hate it then…move on. It is kind of catchy though… Gotta make my mind up…
Seriously Catchy Autotune
Best Candid Moment
I love the kid’s accent. I don’t think it would have made it viral without that.
I Want What He’s Having
Combine Dad’s Flipcam with a seven-year-old kid high on novocaine and you have all the makings of this viral classic. Is it just me or is there something slightly sadistic about the way the father eggs the kid on? I wonder what David will think of this video when he grows up.
Best Video Blog
I will always love Chris Crocker for showing us his authentic self online before it was cool. In fact he was one of the original video bloggers who laid the ground for others to follow. Some people believe that Chris is just playing a character. Maybe. But that is the beautiful irony of YouTube.
Best Viral Ads
One of the best viral campaigns ever. When Blendtec came up with this idea they cannot possibly have realized how wildly successful their little video would turn out to be. Reportedly they knew they were onto something when kids began asking for Blendtec blenders for Christmas. Yeah and just throw in a spatula as a stocking stuffer…
Best Inspirational Video
The way this is edited is expertly edited to manipulate you into feeling inspired and it works. Boyle went on to sell millions.
Best Book Reading
Cover your ears for the scream.
Cutest (Wild) Animal
They are ridiculously sweet.
I have not found a top contender. Suggestions?
This doggie ended up receiving a commercial deal after this video made the viral rounds.
The Classic That Started Them All
How to Lose Friends and Piss Off People