World's Fair

Specifically, he said:

Well, I think if you’re going to focus on the similarities of your three examples, it’s almost as if an inherant goofiness is key for the spreading phenomenon. Mel Gibson drunk? That’s goofy. Zidane with the headbutt? Also goofy. Maybe that’s why something like 0.7% won’t work – can you really make something like that goofy?

Of course, this wasn’t the Bono that left the first comment on the previous Snakes in a Plane/Viral Marketing post.

Was it?

Although, come to think of it, that post did immediately follow a rejected science humour piece about him. And the email address left, without giving it out, does sort of make sense in a clever Bono-ish sort of way.

Still, whatever the identity (and BTW, if it is the real Bono – want to do an interview?), the comment left was pretty deft.

Especially when you take a moment to look more closely at these viral things, and you decide specifically to look via wiki. If you do, what you come across is a page about internet phenomenons (thanks RPM), which in turn has an extensive list of things that somehow exhibited this infectious public notoriety.

So let’s run down a partial list…

Chuck Norris
The Dildo Song
Stealth Disco
Badger Badger Badger
Retarded animal babies

O.K. so Bono might be on to something. Dammit! Not only does he get to be an International rock icon, but he also gets to be a sharp media critic!

Anyway, to me, the doubly interesting thing is that if you run down that full listing on the wiki site, there’s really nothing at all meaty in the social responsibility department – nothing really concerning making folks smarter, saving the world, doing good, etc, etc, etc. I mean, seriously, can you really see 0.7% and world poverty being comfortable up there in that same list?

Still, I’m not sure if that is just the nature of the situation, or perhaps it’s got more to do with media labeling. i.e. it doesn’t make that kind of news or become the water cooler phenomenon unless it’s a bit on the silly, banal, embarrassing or trivial side.

Whatever the case may be, it makes something like 0.7% even more of a challenge. But that’s o.k. – we scientific types like challenges, right?



  1. #1 Hairy Carrot
    August 19, 2006

    When you think about stuff you’ve done while hovering near that 0.7% mark, you chuckle. Personally, I’ve slapped my own face (numbness, or a “facial buzz”), I’ve tried to dance with some moonpigs, and I’ve talked my way out of some possible legal problems. What I haven’t done was toss out anti-semitic rants. On the whole, I think I’m a pretty classy guy.
    Oh yeah, I can’t wait for the sequel, “Squids On A Plane”

  2. #2 katherine sharpe
    August 21, 2006

    and who could forget the Hamster Dance?