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The Unfortunate and Ubiquitous Success of Rebecca Black, Viral Sensation

I don’t even know where to begin with this one.

First of all, here’s the video in all its pre-teen “glory”:

If you make it at least a minute into that video, congratulations. If you couldn’t make it to the chorus, here’s a sample of some of Black’s lyrical genius (I wish sarcasm could translate well through text):

It’s Friday, Friday
Gotta get down on Friday
Everybody’s lookin’ forward to the weekend, weekend
Friday, Friday
Gettin’ down on Friday
Everybody’s lookin’ forward to the weekend

Partyin’, partyin’ (Yeah)
Partyin’, partyin’ (Yeah)
Fun, fun, fun, fun
Lookin’ forward to the weekend

Not only do Black’s lyrics sound like a stream of consciousness from a 6th grader, but she lacks any form of vocal talent whatsoever. According to The Vancouver Sun, Black is a “younger, prettier version of William Hung.”

And why is a 13-year-old cruising the town with friends? None of you are even old enough to have your learner’s permit, let alone a real driver’s license.

Anyway, enough with the jabs (for now), and on to the real analysis. One has to wonder where this train wreck came from.

Well, it appears to me that there are two options; two places from which society grabs all of its tween “talent”: YouTube or the Disney Channel.

There is no way Black is a “double-threat” (actor/singer combination) as most Disney Channel stars are – or wish to become, rather. Yep, Rebecca Black is just a Youtube sensation.

Black is a stellar example of how social media can really elevate someone’s  career – or just make them a temporary viral sensation.

Side note: as soon as I typed that sentence, I checked my Twitter (typical) and found this article posted by @mashable. I can only hope some real talent comes out of it…

Twitter and Facebook are great for sharing – or collectively making fun of – videos, pictures, etc. I first saw the video for “Friday” in my Facebook news feed, posted by one of my friends. After that, I saw it everywhere. The following day, I had at least four friends send me the link for the video or ask if I’ve seen it yet. I even saw someone post an equally awful video with reference to “Friday.”

When I last checked, “Rebecca Black” was trending #4 in the U.S. on Twitter – clearly a hot topic. I expected it to also be one of the most viewed videos on YouTube, but apparently 9,332,311 views isn’t enough!

Another side note: one person linked the video in my Facebook news feed in the past 10 minutes and comedian Bo Burnham (one of the few people whose tweets I actually get sent to my phone) tweeted:


Although YouTube has been good at elevating young stars as of late (Justin Bieber) it seems that the music only appeals to “tweens.” However, I hope even tweens don’t take “Friday” seriously.

My advice to you, Rebecca Black? Don’t quit your day job – the eighth grade.

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