When did “viral” first become a thing?
The internet world is a great one. It’s where you can find research on your report for school, where you can find a community to support and understand you—and where you can get your eyes (and ears) on some of the best content to ever hit humanity.
Nowadays, it seems as if the most viral content is the best content. And while there is space to debate this, there’s no arguing the idea that viral content definitely is important in society. I mean, where else are we going to get all our references from, right?
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Charlie Bit Me
Released over a decade ago, the Charlie Bit Me video has since been viewed over 800 million times on YouTube. We’re not exactly sure why it was such a hit the world over, but we’re going to put our money on how cute, innocent and funny the children are.
Who knew capturing such a sweet moment between brothers would blow up? The boys have since grown up and even reenacted the video for their 10 year anniversary—but nothing beats the OG.
Ellen’s Oscar Selfie
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) March 3, 2014
Once the most retweeted tweet on Twitter, this moment was captured by none other than Bradley Cooper during the 2014 Academy Awards, which was hosted by Ellen Degeneres. The fun and candid moment proves you don’t need millions and millions of dollars to bring 12 of the biggest names in Hollywood together and make a big impact.
HELP ME PLEASE. A MAN NEEDS HIS NUGGS pic.twitter.com/4SrfHmEMo3
— Carter Wilkerson (@carterjwm) April 6, 2017
If you ever need proof that humanity can come together in the biggest yet shallowest way, here is your evidence: #NuggsForCarter. Carter Wilkerson asked Wendy’s how many RTs he would need to get a year’s worth of chicken nuggets and when the fast food chain said 18 million, Carter jumped at the opportunity.
Now his original post hasn’t reached the goal, but good-guy Wendy’s did it anyway! In fact, they threw in a $100,000 donation in Carter’s name to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, too.
Barack Obama’s farewell
Thank you for everything. My last ask is the same as my first. I'm asking you to believe—not in my ability to create change, but in yours.
— President Obama (@POTUS44) January 11, 2017
When someone as influential and beloved as Barack Obama steps down from the office, you know it’s going to be powerful. But instead of using the moment to enable his own projects or thank the names we all already know, he used it to throw the challenge back at his countrymen.
Leave it up to Bill Gates to make a simple awareness project into a science project. When he did the #ALSBucketChallenge, accepting Mark Zuckerberg’s dare, he designed a contraption to help him do it. With 27 million eyeballs, it’s one of the most viewed items from the challenge.
Despacito – Luis Fonsi featuring Daddy Yankee
Reading the word “Despacito” is virtually impossible—you’ll sing it before you flatly say it. The song, which took the world by storm, has been viewed over 5.6 billion times on YouTube (not counting, of course, radio and Spotify listens, downloads and purchased records).
France vs Germany in Paris
When Vine was still a thing, it was the go-to for snackable and hilarious content. The idea that a few seconds-long video could just be played on loop over and over while laughter continued to ensue was practically magic. But while most of the videos on Vine were funny, one of its most looped items was a clip from the 2015 football match between France and Germany on the evening of the Paris attacks.
Listen for the explosion as the athletes look around in confusion; it’s still pretty chilling.
LeBron James meme
The NBA is no joke, especially when the championship is on the line. So when JR Smith made a game-changing mistake, LeBron James was clearly furious—and confused. The video clip of The King’s reaction has since become an unstoppable meme.
Karma’s A Bitch
Korean content has been everywhere recently, but the Karma’s A Bitch challenge proves you don’t need to be a star to be seen all over the world. Always shocking and sometimes funny, this is a video you should keep in your arsenal for a good pick-me-up.
Stormi Webster’s Debut
So we’re all here getting psyched about 20 likes on Instagram when Stormi’s first public photo reached the millions easily. Now, the image has been double-tapped more than 18 million times, making it the most liked post on the massive social media platform (beating out Beyoncé’s amazing maternity photo, as well as Justin Bieber’s engagement announcement).
The internet, huh? It’s like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.
Art Alexandra Lara