The funny, the crazy, the viral. We love it, and can’t get enough of it. But why?

Why do people love watching and sharing silly videos? Why does a child biting his brother’s finger get 650 million views, a remix, and a sequel? Why do we send videos to our friends of a dog who seems to be talking about a cat?  As we all know the list of viral videos is nearly endless, but what might be a few causes for our society to go viral? And most importantly, why are these all so unbelievably enjoyable?  In the wake of Flappy Bird causing such a commotion for the app community and for that matter pretty much everyone else using a smartphone, we thought it was time to reconsider a few reasons for our viral love affair. What is it that appears to hooks us in the first place and then reels us in, and why do we keep coming back for more?  Flappy Bird could be a whole psychological study onto itself.  With its one and only difficulty level set to “Lucifer,” it possibly is one of the most frustrating game ever made. The creator even had to take it down, admitting to its addictive quality, and in  the wake of his decision received death threats, which were posted on Twitter for him to put it back up. Apparently the game was created for moments of relaxation, but anyone who has played will tell you otherwise, of the gut-wrenching agony and frustration of this stupid flappy bird that never quite flaps the way you want it to go. What makes the game so addictive? The graphics are rudimentary, crude, and in a way, abrasive. The bird is unquestionably insubordinate, and it flies through an infinite loop of repeating pipe and sky backgrounds ad nauseum. The colors are nuclear and displeasing. The sounds of the wings seem to beat you over the head with every level you advance. In every way, this game desires to offend. maxresdefault And what about something like Gangnam Style? Could we make the same comparisons? The outfits are outlandish, our hero is fat and abrasive as well, like the guest who just won’t leave your house. Yet the way he moves and is so quick on his feet is incredible too. Overall it’s a ridiculous show that we can’t help but look away from. In fact, we look repeatedly, without control, sharing it with everyone who might have a similar reaction to us. Viral videos and games touch us on some psychological level/nerve, usually have an element of ridiculousness, and give a feeling that regular people, just like us, want to share their silliness with one another. More than sharing information, people want to share their feelings. We all have this one thing in common, and that is being human. By that definition we struggle, endure hardship, and try to live successfully and happily despite the obstacles around us. Could it be that these viral videos, games, pictures, etc. provide for us an escape?  It could be that more than being entertained and wanting to share simply for the idea of being a part of something, our brains and dare I say our hearts, wish to share that escape with others. So. Ridiculousness, Check. Aesthetic dislike, CheckMaybe not a whole lot of beauty or talent, Check. But what a way to tap into some basic human emotion and push a few buttons That sounds about right for humanity. Your fifteen minutes of fame is waiting! What will you do to inspire our viral love affair?  
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