Shared context is everything.
Another big hit for a higher ed video?
Yesterday before calling it a day, I stumbled upon a tweet mentioning a new YouTube video from the University of Waterloo. The tweet was posted on the #pseweb hashtag that I follow since I attended the Canadian conference in Vancouver last June. This tweet set some expectations, because of the hashtag and the word “joke”:
I watched the video posted by the University of Waterloo — and found it just fantastic. It went from 300 views yesterday to more 7,000 today at 6AM when I wrote this post.
Do me a favor, watch it now
So, what do you think?
Need some context?
I bet you will have a totally different reaction to the video whether or not you were at the #PSEWEB conference (or follow very closely news about social media and viral videos).
The video is a parody of a previous tongue-in-cheek video from BodyForm, a feminine product, Todd Sanders told me about in Vancouver.
It wasn’t a personal recommendation (but, hey, didn’t you wonder for a minute? ;-). Todd mentioned this video in the keynote he gave at the #PSEWEB conference.
If you haven’t yet, go ahead and watch the BodyForm video:
Context makes a huge difference
Once you’ve seen the BodyForm video, you automatically know the video from the University of Waterloo is just meant as a joke, right?
You might not like the joke, but it is not a big deal.
If you’ve worked in higher education for some time, you know that it is VERY difficult for *some* alums, students, parents or faculty to have a sense of humor when it comes to their institution. Their alma mater is part of their personal identity, so they tend to take anything it does or publishes… very personally.
Without context, many commenters didn’t get the video was meant as a joke and didn’t know how to react, so they ended up posting negative comments.
I’m going to be honest and admit that I didn’t expect either this kind of reactions when I first saw the UW video yesterday. I just thought it was brilliant (a bit long, but really great).
It reminded me of the smart Old Spice parody BYU Library did 3 years ago. I had forgotten about the golden rule of context.
I’m sure the video will make news today.
What do YOU think?