tv The Stream Al Jazeera December 27, 2013 12:30pm-1:01pm EST
eliminate al-qaeda easter ror network. thank you for watching al jazeera america. i'm del walters in new york. "the stream" is next. our digital producer, wajahat ali is here bringing in all of your live feedback. waj our staff was so excited when we told them which viral stars we were going to have on the program today.
>> yeah, and what is not to be excited about. we asked positive or negative viral which goes more viral? >> oh! >> oh, yeah. >> yeah, a whole bunch of those. and here is a cat playing a keyboard. this lisa has 33 million views. this is google, using a viral video to promote both their product and also a positive social message here. so what does make a video go viral? interesting question. >> so you have seen the youtube videos, the vines and the memes that made the rounds this year. 2013 has been full of viral content we have all loved, hated and shared. here is a taste of the biggest accidental hit. ♪
>> besides the obvious comic relief and entertainment, what drives our impulse to click, share, and release? what is the psychology of it all? and can you predict what is going to go viral. joining us is the executive social director, and joining us from l.a. is henry goldman, managing prodouser and curator of all things viral at buzz feed. viral? >> we don't necessarily think about what will go viral, but we think about what will make
people share a video. we take about 20 videos a week, and get about 80 million views a month on those videos, and we always try to think of every time we put up a video, will somebody share this? and why will they share it? and that's a biggest question for us. >> so again -- jenna that's interesting. is there a common format that is videos? >> certainly. a big one that you alluded to already is emotion. the stronger we feel about something the more likely we are to share it. but it's not just positive or negative, it also fires us up, so while anger and humor may seem like two really different
things, they drive us to take action. >> lee on facebook says . . . and here is a perfect example. >> how [ censor bleep ] dare anyone out there make fun of through! >> and there is this video with 100 million views. ♪ >> so elizabeth, that individual individual -- video you just saw the contrast. for the millennial generation some say they are just narcissists, but some say no,
good. >> yeah, i think millennials there is a perception we are just interested in cat videos, but millennials are actually driven by purpose and causes. and i think one of the contents behind it, it was criticized, and it is usually what happens with viral videos. first everyone loves them, and then it is a double-edged sword, and your message can be hijacked. ? so storytelling is very important, young person, our brains are basically wired for stories. >> jonah will are more than two days of video uploaded every minute.
what does that say about us as a culture, and are people doing this to get famous? why is there such volume? >> people love to express themselves. another big driver of what people share is how it makes them look. does passing this along make me look good or bad. and part of the reason people are sharing things is it allows them to support causes. also show their cutting edge. they know what is going on, and they are smart and in the know, and part of it is how it makes them look. >> henry how much of what you see and post and try to create is cause oriented compared to sufficient that is just fluffy and funny? >> i think it's a brood mix. and just to piggyback on what jonah said, when you post something, you are communicating to the world
either just the message or you are adding something to that. and we try to think about what is the communication we're doing for people. are they helping say something that is an argument about a cause? are we helping them express their identity, or just giving them something that says this will make your day better. >> all right. you have to see this video. >> oh, i watched this like times. >> but guess what, everyone thought it was real, and wait for it, jimmy kimmel comes in and tells the world, no it's fake. jimmy kimmel said you guys are fools. what does it say about your society that we get duped so
easily now? >> the whole twerking thing i think was a huge phase in the viral world. i think it is starting to die now, because now like our parents are talking about twerking, and we're like oh, no no. it is not funny anymore. [ laughter ] >> but i think to take these viral concepts and think about what made this video go viral? and how can i make a video about the middle east go viral and use the same concepts. >> we sort of know why things go viral, but what then. after the break, two of the biggest names from past and present, the man who kicked it off, and the biggest sensation of 2013, yelvis,
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♪ chocolate rain, a baby born with an iv, chocolate rain, the school books say it can be here again ♪ >> that was chocolate rain, a video that went viral in 2007 long before the world viral became a household word, and the man behind it all. welcome to "the stream." >> thank you for having me. >> i love that voice. looking back and knowing what popular?
>> a lot of people say i have a voice body mismatch. some people say that the song is catchy, their two year old can't stop singing it at bedtime, and a smaller group of people resinated with the meaning. what does this song mean? so these three reasons. >> did you set out to be famous? >> absolutely not. i set out to record music in my living room because it was easier than singing at open mics and dragging my keyboards to mom indianapolis. >> there are two guys who have had fame heaped upon them, the norwegian duo behind the hit, what does the fox say?
♪ and the still goes ow, ow, ow ♪ ♪ that no one knows ♪ ♪ what does the fox say ♪ ding, ding, ding, ding >> welcome to the show, guys. >> thank you. >> thanks for having us. >> so glad to have you. we should mention you are in a limo in l.a. right now. so tell us why -- why did you make this video, first? and at what point did you realize this thing was really taking on a life of its own? >> we have a talk show in norway, which we fill up with small comedy bits and stuff, for example music videos. this was one of them. released it as a promo for the first show, and i would say by -- just overnight, or after two days we
understood that had taken another direction. >> you have a show on tv in norway, but that doesn't account for 280 million views. what do you think people are gravitating too? >> it might be the same thing. we didn't plan out for this, really, and it's just a song, and it's made to be 3:45 of fun, basically. and i think if we tried to make something go viral, we wouldn't have made it. >> 3:45 of fun took how long to make? >> it's kind of hard to say, but -- couple of weeks. >> well, it's not just a 3::00 song, it's a viral sensation. when i was in norway everyone i met said do you know the song? and i said yes, we know the song. and lee says . . .
speaking about dancing, i have to give some props to the harlem shake video that went viral, give it a listen. ♪ do the harlem shake >> that brings up an interesting question about copyright ownership. the creator of that video might lose all of his money because he may have used two segments that weren't cleared. so how do you protect your copyright or content? tay you go first. >> in the case of chocolate rain, i had a license that
allowed people to reuse it for free. >> do you feel like there are companies out there that are unfairly capitalizing on the works of these artists to go back online? and what are you guys doing to protect yourselves? >> this was made for a network, so there are obviously quite a lot of paperwork already that had been done there. and i'm so glad i'm not sort of the -- in the music industry, because they try to hard to have control of everything, and we just hired somebody with a baseball bat and just send him around. >> in terms of viral contend and if it is successful, everybody is trying to get a piece of it. >> that's a really great point, i'm glad you brought it up, because a lot of people making
this video aren't in an industry where they are going to get paid millions to do it. and that's something we have to think about. >> it's a perfect segue, because i'm going to show you this video that went viral. >> obviously we have a rapist in lincoln park, he is climbing in your window ♪ 7 >> so that video went viral, he became a superstar, made money based off of that video clip. ai you have been through this for the past seven years, what people? >> i think they were right insofar as if you try to create something that is viral, that's
not where viral videos come from. you try to be real, authentic, and who you are. and honestly, life is extreme. the twists and turns of human drama and human emotion and who human beings are is already extreme, so i think if you just try to put that out there in a video like youtube or what have you, then you are more likely to find an audience. >> for a lot of folks it's about what comes next, and you guys have had huge success in this area after your 280 million views, deals are being thrown at you right and left, what are some of the things you are considering as a result of the success of this video? >> honestly we haven't been spending a lot of time thinking about it, because we had our show back in norway and we had to work a lot with it, so we're
still in the phase where we're finding out what -- what kinds of things we can do. >> i have heard rumor of a children's book. can you comment on that? >> that actually started before the video. which is very funny for us. because we wanted this video to be a tank project. we made it as a spoof. we wanted it to be something we came back to norway with and say, we had an opportunity to make a hit song, but the only thing we could come up with was the sounds that the fox made. and that didn't work out, but part of it was wouldn't it be fun to have well-produced merchandise for a song that is really not successful. >> i think we'll see a lot of merchandise coming out as a result of this. after the break.
♪ welcome back. we're talking about the psychology of what makes videos go viral. jonah a lot of money can be associated with videos that go viral. are companies spending research and development time to narrow in on a formal to help video goes viral? >> a lot of companies are very interested in what makes videos go viral. the problem is they try to do the same thing that was a hit before. but there is a science behind it, some rules companies can follow to go after valuable reality. it is great if something gets 10 million views, but does it help the brand at the end of the day. >> jonah everybody is listening,
and saying he has the keys. what are some of the key factors do you think? >> what something looks. triggers, is it triggered by the environment, so we all think of the oreos tweet, oreos plugs into the existing conversation. also practical value. does it help people? does it make them better off and public and stories, wrapping it in a story or narrative really helps them catch on. those steps are what we found drives success. >> what about the element of surprise? because when i'm watching a video, and all of a sudden twerking girls falls over and catches on fire, to me it was hilarious. is that a factor? >> absolutely.
creating surprise makes it more novel, but also when you are sharing that surprise, they are going to get that same emotional response that you got. and with respect to jimmy kimmel's twerking girl, the surprise of the fact that he was behind the whole thing, and it was a large experiment that he played, that got shared as well. >> a big gotcha. i should be clear it's not funny when people caught on fire. >> and lisa replayed that video loud. >> our whole staff was. >> i want to show this video. ♪ a pair of legs engineered to defie the laws of physics, and
the most epic of splits. ♪ who can say where the road goes, where the day goes ♪ >> we have seen volvo, we have seen google use their corporate brand and videos to promote their brand name and story. talk to us about how some brands have failed. >> i think when they co-op it and just try -- if you want something to go viral, it is not going to go viral. if there's no secret sauce. you need to make your story sticky, and by that something that stays with the viewer and something that brings something positive to your brand. like the pan teen pro-v commercial went viral this week. but then what happened was a lot
of people tried to poke holes and say why is there only white people in the commercial for a brand that was developed in the philippines. so there's all of these questions, and i think they went viral, so that worked, but i impact. >> is all publicity good publicity when it comes to even push back for these companies? >> i think if you are an unknown person like yellvis was, it is a good thing. if you are a big brand like pa pantine, it can actually hurt. >> henry do companies need to have success in the viral video world to stay relevant? >> i think they are going to have to. right now you can still spend
most of your budget on traditional advertising, and let it be an experiment, but you are going to have to figure out a way to create something that is authentic, not just repurposed commercial that is longer and then posted to your youtube channel, because no one wants to go just watch that or share it with their friends. >> what about the videos that don't make the list, that should have been viral? and i know you have one that you want to share. >> yeah, during this year in crisis there was a lot of discussion about the topic, and i wanted to talk about this and have this conversation online, and when there were videos that came out of syria, for example, there was a video of this kind of attack -- this nuclear bomb -- or whatever it was -- i don't think they determined exactly what it was, but there was an explosion and people and children that were hurt, and i
wanted to share the video, and i noticed that people were clicking on it, but they weren't sharing it. first it was low-rousing emotion. so coming back to what jonah was talking about low-arousing motion is feeling sad as opposed to feeling outrage. chatah. chatah. low-arousing motion, and there wasn't a clear hero. people were wondering is obama -- should obama intervene? should he not intervene. so people when they were sharing their video, they would be interpreting them sharing the video in a lot of different ways, so there was some ambiguity there. >> jonah kind of sum this up for us. why does this matter?
>> whether you are for-profit or nonprofit organization, everyone is trying to get attention to their message. and traditional advertising doesn't work anymore. word of mouth is a much more effective way to reach people. and as i think the other panels mentioned, moving beyond just the number of views, because now you can buy views. so the key for brands is to figure out how to get everyone to share content, whether it's 1 million or 100,000 views that you are getting again and again repeatedly so you make your message contagious. >> thanks to all of our guests today. waj and i will see you online. ♪