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Why are certain #trends so popular these days?


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There are all sorts of trends, from technological trends such as the new iPhone to fashion trends like Silly Bandz. In essence, anything that causes a large population of people to follow a certain behavior can be considered a trend, which includes videos.

Within YouTube’s eight year history, there have been a handful of ridiculously popular videos, including Gangnam Style by Psy. Ever since Gangnam Style was uploaded, thousands upon thousands of people filmed themselves performing their own version of the Gangnam Style dance and uploaded it to Youtube.

Now, Youtube is being taken over by the latest trend: the Harlem Shake.

So what exactly is the Harlem Shake?

In the Harlem Shake, one person starts off dancing to a song, usually wearing some headwear, for 15 seconds. Meanwhile, there are people in the background, totally unaware of the dancer.

Then when the song says “do the Harlem Shake,” everybody in the video dances convulsively for the next 15 seconds.

All in all, most Harlem Shake videos are only between 30-32 seconds long.

Nothing too special, right? So how do videos like these become so popular?

Sophomore Brian Lee believes that one of the reasons Harlem Shake videos are so popular is due to the difficulty involved with making a video.

“It’s not difficult to make a Harlem Shake video at all, so everyone can make one,” stated Lee.

The Harlem Shake just involves one camera angle and only one person is needed to make a Harlem Shake video. No lyrics are written, no choreography is performed, and no real organization is needed.

The simplicity allows anyone to make a Harlem Shake video anytime, anywhere, as long as they have a camera. After they spaz out for 30 seconds, the actors/actresses just have to sync what they recorded with music, and it’s ready for upload.

In addition, sophomore Mackenna Galicia has another idea why the Harlem Shake is so popular.

“It’s a chain reaction with the video-making,” Galicia said. “People find the videos really entertaining. The more bizarre the video the more entertaining it is, which makes other people want to try and make a video of themselves.”

Since there are so many Harlem Shake videos right now, a lot of people are trying to make a really entertaining video that’ll stand out.

Therefore, people from all different backgrounds have made their own rendition of the Harlem Shake. Some notable actor include players from the Miami Heat basketball team and Norwegian soldiers.

As a side note, the Harlem Shake that is going viral right now is not to be confused with the Harlem Shake a man named Albert Boyce performed in Rucker Park, Harlem, in the 1980s.

According to NBC News, during halftime in basketball games at Rucker Park, Boyce would perform a dance on the basketball court where he would dance and twist his shoulders. His dance was also known as the Harlem Shake. The two Harlem Shakes have no relation to each other, though.

The Independent, a British national newspaper, says that the current Harlem Shake was created by five teenagers from Queensland, Australia, whom put up the video of them doing the Harlem Shake on February 2, 2013.

Ever since the upload, hundreds of thousands of Harlem Shake videos have been uploaded to Youtube, from countries including the United States, China, and Brazil.

In addition, the artist of the song that accompanies the Harlem Shake, Baauer, has also been quite successful.

The creator of the Harlem Shake song, Baauer, used to live in Germany and moved to the United States at the age of seven. Ever since Baauer turned 13, he’s been making dance songs, with his breakthrough song being the Harlem Shake.

Due to the popularity of the videos, Baauer’s Harlem Shake song has reached #1 on the Billboard Top 100. However, Baauer’s original song is over three minutes long.

Right now, Baauer is working on a track called “Higher,” with fellow artist Just Blaze.

No matter what the reason, the Harlem Shake has been taking the internet by storm. However, it’s quite likely that the hype surrounding the Harlem Shake will die down soon.

So, who knows what the next trending video will be?

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The student news site of Carlmont High School in Belmont, California.
Why are certain #trends so popular these days?