Posts about viral

Microsoft’s video virus

I perused the Viral Video Chart and came across a produced video dramatizing the divorce of a beautiful woman labeled “consumer” and her husband labeled “advertiser.” All he cares about is himself; he just doesn’t understand or listen to her.

It’s clever and slickly produced and it turns out it was produced by Microsoft to pitch its “digital advertising solutions” (which, by the way, will only expand when and if it takes over aQuantive). It’s the rare case I’ve seen where a company set out to create something viral and succeeded, at least as measured by the Viral Video people and by its ratings: 31,000 views as of today. The video links to a blog that is all about making the movie and explains why they made it: “We want to try and tell that digital media is not about technology but about quality of communication, about the interaction between 2 people. There is no better medium than a movie to symbolize the one-to-one communication between people, in this case between an advertiser and a consumer.” Precisely how Microsoft changes the conversation between advertisers and — note my word change — customer, I’m not sure.

Viral Nielsens

I’ve been wanting to know what viral videos had infected the most conversations and was thinking about trying to do something that looked at links and insertions into blogs and such. Well, somebody just went and did it. Scott Button unveils the Viral Video Chart. What’s interesting about this is that it isn’t purely traffic. It is about conversation. They explain:

We scan several million blogs a day to see which online videos people are talking about the most. We count the number of times each video is linked to and the number of times each video is embedded. Every morning, after we’ve had a cup of coffee, we publish a list of the 25 videos that generated the most buzz over the previous day. We reckon this is a pretty good yardstick of what’s hot and what’s not. At the moment we only look for references to videos on the three most influential video sharing sites: YouTube, Google Video and MySpace. We tried looking for references to videos on some other sites for a while, but nothing ever made the top 25 so we stopped.

Today’s top video, Keith Olberman slapping Bush around:

YouElect

James Kelm asks about the impact of YouTube and viral video on the next presidential election — or any election, for that matter. He notes that candidates should look at this as a way to directly give their messages to the public. Of course, it can also be used by opponents to show or remix candidates’ worst sides (cue Dean Scream). I remember in the last election getting to hear podcasts of candidates’ stump speeches thanks to one site and it was a great way to hear directly and all at once, rather than reading the lines dribbled out by bored pool reporters.

For the upcoming elections, I think any video sharing service worth its salt should enable sharing and editing of video: We, the people, should take along our cameras and put up entire stump speeches. We should also TiVo and share candidates’ spiels on TV and also network reports. Then we should be enabled to easily remix compliations of quotes: what all the candidates really said about immigration, or Daily-Show-like what-he-said-then-vs.-now comparisons.

The next revolution may not be televised. But it can be YouTubed. [via Sullivan]