Songs Made Popular by Viral Videos or Vice Versa

There’s a sub-culture of music that revolves around these particular videos. The songs are initially inserted into the video to support the storyline or humorous effect, but as the songs catch on, people begin to create videos for the sake of using the songs.


Most recently, an eight-year-old Kanye West song, Gone, gained popularity due to a viral video created and posted by a woman dancing around in an office while proclaiming that she quit her job. In this case, the track was chosen in context of the video, but that is now just the beginning. As this video gains more traction in the online communities, Gone is going to be a necessary component of every parody video and similar viral videos, in which people dance in an empty office to Kanye West.

Six-second Vine videos also revolve around music, such as Josh Turner’s Your Man, Finatticz’s Don’t Drop that Thun Thun, YG’s My N***a,  Sage The Gemini’s Gas Pedal, and Problem’s D2B (down below). By re-making previously made Vines, people use the same song as an automatic attention-grabber, which propels the popularity of the video itself.


I would have never heard of most of these artists if it weren’t for the remakes and re-vines of the Vines. Perhaps, viewing the internet as a collaborative playing field is a serious cultural component of this digital age- that (some of) the music cannot exist without the amateur videos created by seventeen-year olds in their parents’ living room, and vice versa. Although it is argued that Vine videos only cater to a particular niche of people, the cultural impact reaches beyond the Vine community and into Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc… and, eventually, Billboard.

Despite the legal and financial implications of monetizing popular content, the public recognition of the material is clearly present. YG and his label may not have made a cent off of the many vine videos that used his song, but neither did the ones who created the vines.

It seems as though as long as no single party is making all the cash (or other benefits), the creative playing field seems level, so far.

4 Responses

  1. hippydog

    I agree, and good timing on the article,
    I was watching my 7 year old daughter this weekend playing on the computer, and I realized;
    We have an entire generation growing up with instant access to information and MEDIA..
    I know how computers affected my generation, and how the internet affect the ‘X’ & ‘Y’ Generation.. what about the the ones after that?
    The problem isnt really the copywrite law itself.. its the fact everyone is trying to control the ‘medium’ not the content..
    The original idea of the copyright technically went thru the same thing.. but it was called the ‘printing press’


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