What YouTube’s Most Watched Videos of the Year Say About Us


Forget TV, movies, and music — Billboard’s Artist of the Year and the top-grossing film of 2010 aren’t what define us as a culture. Much more telling is YouTube’s list of most-watched clips (excluding major label music videos), which the company revealed on its blog yesterday. We post the top ten and muse about what they say about us as a society after the jump.

10. Ken Block’s Gymkhana THREE, Part 2; Ultimate Playground; l’Autodrome, France

In our unending quest to find the world’s most unnecessary sport, we have managed to combine NASCAR and parkour. Because extreme unicycling isn’t weird enough. And, like most societies in decline, we are comfortable with the idea of people risking their lives for our amusement.

9. Jimmy Surprises Bieber Fan

Children: how do they work? We still don’t know. Parents: increasingly willing to embarrass their toddlers on YouTube. Clearly our celebrity-obsessed culture has been good to everyone.


Think Gen Y doesn’t care about feminism? Just wait for Gen Z…

7. Yosemitebear Mountain Giant Double Rainbow 1-8-10

A shocking number of us haven’t had the pleasure of watching someone on acid look at, well, anything.

6. OK Go – This Too Shall Pass – Rube Goldberg Machine version – Official

We will put up with a band’s mediocre music as long as they keep giving us sweet music videos.

5. Old Spice | The Man Your Man Could Smell Like

We seek commercials targeted to our ironic sense of humor and can expect to see lots more knowing, winking, viral ads in 2010. If they are as funny as the Old Spice Guy, we are OK with that.

4. Annoying Orange Wazzup

Frat guys watch YouTube. A lot. Usually when they’re drunk.

3. Greyson Chance Singing Paparazzi

No, we’re not sick of Justin Bieber yet. In fact, we want more, smaller versions of him! Also, our feelings about gender roles continue to be conflicted.

2. TIK TOK KESHA Parody: Glitter Puke – Key of Awe$ome #13

We have been hungry for someone to parody Ke$ha since, well, the first time we saw her dollar sign-bedecked name. And when your parody is better than the original (and how could it not be?), we will reward that — with nearly 20 million more viewings than “Tik Tok” itself.

1. BED INTRUDER SONG!!! (now on iTunes)

We have more race and class issues than we would like to admit/unpack.