On May 12, 2008 a friend sent me an amusing video via email with the subject line: Women Farting in Public Toilets urging that i find a way to post it to The Bacon Strip. One of the things that, then burgeoning, YouTube allowed recipients of email forwards who also blog to do was to upload that content so that it could be embedded on a website and shared without clogging up email inboxes.

So I uploaded it, posted it and had a laugh.

Since then, the video had become my most viewed upload on YouTube. It has almost 293,000 views and gets about 100 views a day. A while back YouTube asked if I wanted to do a revenue share on it, but since it isn’t my content, that won’t go. Here’s the video:

I was just poking around on the insights on this and found some interesting things. First, about this video: It’s the Graham Norton Show, a BBC offering that is some kind of sketch comedy something or other. Dreadful really. This is from an episode featuring guests Sharon Gless and Tyne Daly, stars of the ’80’s ladycop show Cagney and Lacey.

Next, some insights about who watches this video on YouTube:

As you would expect, men are the biggest consumers of videos about women farting. This is no surprise. Women might consider being a little more relaxed. Could be good for picking up dudes.

Demographics of users on social media of all kinds have been trending older. This we knew. I was still surprised to find that the largest group interested in viewing videos of women farting was men, 45 – 54. There are still questions. Is it the farting or the public toilets? This is hardly scientific. Lamentably, i don’t see a way to scientifically sample the vagaries of women farting vs. women in public toilets in online video views.

Interesting thing here is that Facebook is the largest single source of links to this video. But at only .97 percent of the total views, even the largest controbutor isn’t really a “gamechanger.” Sure this is a power law, but it’s no 80/20 rule. This is a long motherfucking tail!

Lastly, this is the curve of views from day one to now. You can see that it’s gradual and only over long time scales can you expect to get large views even on content as compelling as women farting in public toilets.

How do you make something go viral? Post a┬áprurient┬ávideo, then wait 3 years. Just make sure it doesn’t have any copyrighted content in it, and you can get a kickback from the YouTube ads…

-M