Viral videos

BBC world news recently made an embarrassing error during a news broadcast about Syria by showing a logo which supposedly belonged to the United Nations security council (UNSC). The Logo however, actually belonged to the UNSC (United Nations Space Command) in the popular video game Halo. A BBC spokesperson apologized for the error.

BBC News makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of all images broadcast. However, very occasionally mistakes do happen. Unfortunately an incorrect logo was used during a segment on last week's News at One bulletin and we apologise to viewers for the mistake. 

But Youtube, of course, had the video uploaded for those who missed out on the actual broadcast.
This video, which was only released a week ago, currently has over 374,000 views. The mistake made by BBC grabbed the attention of many people around the world. But the mistake by BBC turned out to be a brilliant piece of advertising for the makers of Halo, which made many people wonder if advertising was in fact the original intention.

This type of video is known as a viral video, which when uploaded spreads from person to person like a virus. Viral videos can be an extremely effective marketing tool because it can reach millions of people easily and is free to upload.

Kony 2012 was uploaded on youtube on March 5, 2012 about the head of the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), a Ugandan guerrilla group and alleged that he kidnapped children and forced them to become soldiers. This video got a staggering ninety million views.
This video got people thinking and other videos demanding action against Kony and got NGOs rethinking their awareness programs.

Canadian celebrity Justin Bieber, among other celebrities, rose to fame after record producers saw videos of him singing on the popular site youtube. There are now sites which track viral videos, listing them by number of views.

Viral videos are a very effective way of marketing available at the moment.. Even news events captured by a simple camera phone can be uploaded on to the internet which could be classified as citizen journalism.

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Pratish (Ziko) Raj said...

It was hilarious when I first saw this video after some one posted it on Facebook. Since it was by BBC, the only thing that came to mind was that everybody makes mistakes. I really hope it was not intentional as some people claim it to be. That would be disgusting. It is also amazing how a video can influence people. Like the Kony 2012 video. I think it is one of the highest viewed videos on Youtube as well. There aren’t that many viral videos like the Kony 2012, as usually viral videos are humorous in content. Probably that is why they got the huge attention. Well, whatever it was, I think it was for a good course. I also think that we should not be too gullible as to believe everything these videos contain.

Biu Kacimaiwai said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Biu Kacimaiwai said...

Second mistake in the bag? I recently blogged about how BBC also put a false image of what was happening in Syria. It was actually from Iraq from more than 10 years ago. Who does that? Yeah, they have apologised and all but I think in this case, this was a real mistake. So much for "ensuring accuracy of all images". But yea, everyone does make mistakes, its just so much costlier when you're BBC or some other big shot media corporation. As budding journalists, I think we're to make our mistakes now and perfect our strengths in order to be excellent reporters. Good keeping track Arnold!

Keluchiha said...

i remember this, i actually saw the thing wen my granddad was watching the Syria civi murders (stupid Syrian military). I saw the icon and was like "I know that symbol from somewhere" and then it hit me...HOLY F*^% UNSC FTW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Awesome stuff imho

Rashi Kumar said...

BBC is such a recognized news agency. Wouldn’t they check their content at least once before broadcasting it? I think it was an advertising stunt. And it really is embarrassing to see a broadcaster of such caliber to be involved in such a strategy. It was inevitable for the video to go viral. Since it was such an epic fail on BBCs’ part. Very often, videos that have an entertaining content get a high number of views. But once in a while, videos like Kony 2012 emerge that shed a light to pressing issues. If the mainstream media fail, it falls on the citizens to broadcast issues that affect them. This is very much evident during the Arab Spring. However, it is imperative for online publishers to have a credible source.

K80 said...

Leave it to the gamer in the group to turn up this story. I'm sure HALO gamers around the world are rejoicing and talking about this as they are blasting each others head off. Viral videos are indeed a blessing and a curse. They are a great way to get free advertising and attention. The attention for KONY 2012 campaign has raised lots of awareness in a very short time period. After the video went viral it seemed as though everyone changed thier facebook status to something about capturing or stopping Kony. However, in the case of the BBC it is also a way to spread their mistake far and wide to people who probably would not have seen the video otherwise. This was also the case for Jet Blue after one of their pilots got locked out of the cockpit and ran up and down the aisle telling passengers to say their prayers. Talk about a nightmare for the public relations department.

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