Friday, March 5, 2010

Popular Videos on YouTube Often One hit wonders

In Fang Wu and Bernardo Huberman's A Persistence Paradox YouTube is analyzed to see if individual who upload videos on a regular basis gain more views than people who upload videos sparingly. Users who produced videos more frequently produced a better quality over time, but they did not always gain more views for their hard work. It's not a shock to me because it seems as if all the popular videos are one hit wonders on the video sharing website. Top videos on the site include Charlie bit my finger-again!, Evolution of Dance, and Achmed the Dead Terrorist.

With the exception of artists who have uploaded multiple music videos, I don't see anyone gaining popularity as their series of videos continues. Lady Gaga for example became popular almost over night and is constantly releasing hit singles, often only a few weeks after the hit before. As a result of her popularity, her fans tune in to check out her latest video as well as previous videos that they enjoy. Beyonce is also an example of an artist gaining additional views as more videos are posted. One of her most popular videos Single Ladies came several videos after her first solo hit Work It.

With over 100 million views a day users are constantly trying to out do each other in hopes of gaining the most views. Unfortunately for the young Beyonce fan that has just learned the Single Ladies dance, few strangers will watch her video because hers is just another in a stack of hundreds. That stack lists the most popular (often the first ones made) first and then descends down to the least popular. Keep trying little girl... maybe one day your dream of having one of the most viewed videos on YouTube will happen after you learn some other cool dance.

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