x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

The perils of internet fame

Young singer Rebecca Black isn't the first to suffer the vagaries of cyber-fame.

More than 20 million and counting have flocked to YouTube in the past week to pour scorn over 13-year-old Rebecca Black and her music video Friday for its excessive use of Autotune and head-slappingly poor lyrics. She may now be complaining of "cyber-bullying", but Black isn't the first to become a source of viral ridicule.

Take Five... Star Wars kid

The force was not with one (rather chunky) Canadian Jedi fan the day a video of him swinging a golf ball retriever like a lightsabre was leaked. In 2003, his family reached an out-of-court settlement with the families of the schoolfriends who had put the original video online.

Take Four ... Impossible is nothing

Wannabe banker Aleksey Vayner's video CV, in which he billed himself as a "CEO and professional athlete" and showed him serving a tennis ball at 140mph, among other feats, became a Wall Street legend for all the wrong reasons.

Take Three... Take u to da movies

Bangs, aka Sudan's biggest rap star, became an internet sensation in 2009 with a track "dedicated to all the ladies out there that like to go to the movies", in which he rather sweetly promised to pay for tickets, buy popcorn and even hold your hand.

Take two... Aicha

One of the oldest YouTube hits, Belgian teenager Jelle Buelen's slushy pop cover caused mass hysteria, mostly for his choreographed moves, and the fact he filmed himself in his bedroom, complete with dog posters on the wall and cartoony duvet cover.

Take one... Numa Numa dance

Gary Brolsma became an internet celebrity after uploading a video of himself dancing and lip-synching to a song by a Moldovan pop group to a music video website. Initially humiliated, he eventually embraced his fame and appeared in a video for the band Weezer doing his famous dance.

 

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