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View Diary: What's Happenin'? 3.6.13 (70 comments)

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    Hump day.

    The unexpected success of Harlem Shake caused Billboard to bring forward its plans, following two years of discussions, to incorporate data on YouTube views as one of three metrics used to calculate the influential Billboard Hot 100 chart. This marked an important recognition that YouTube now plays a vital role in shaping cultural trends, defining hit songs ahead of radio programmers. Songs like Gangnam Style and the Grammy Award-winner "Somebody That I Used to Know" by Gotye owe much of their success to the new phenomenon of video virality.[28][29]
    The success of Harlem Shake also highlights a change of direction for music rights holders. With the exception of a takedown notice issued when established artist Azealia Banks tried to upload her own version of the track,[32] Baauer and his label, Mad Decent records, instead made use of YouTube's Content ID database to assert copyright over the fan-made videos and claim a proportion of advertising revenue in respect of each one.[8][32]

    Gangnam Style, like other videos that preceded it, was a corporate, top-down traditional campaign. By contrast, the grassroots, bottom-up Harlem Shake has been described as a symbiotic viral meme,[17] where open culture and business coexist.[32] The short length of the video, 31 seconds in most cases, impacts directly on the duration of advertisement that can precede it, which in turn limits advertising revenue.[33][34][35]

    In addition, the comparatively short life cycle of this kind of video meme means that by the time a traditional advertising agency or brand has put together its response to a current trend, it is likely that the trend will have long since peaked.[36]
    Martin Talbot, Managing Director of The Official Charts Company in the UK, described "Harlem Shake" as a "phenomenon", the first ever "crowd sourced video" to significantly drive sales of a song. Previously, as happened with "Gangnam Style", there was always an initial video created by an artist which would start a dance craze that was subsequently adopted by fans.[16]
    The Atlantic magazine declared the "meme murder[ed]" when the mainstream Today television program broadcast their version of the Harlem Shake on February 13.[12]

    "Justice is a commodity"

    by joanneleon on Tue Mar 05, 2013 at 08:23:59 PM PST

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