One of the World’s First Viral Videos Was a Hoax

We’ve all seen it. It started circulating in the 90s, when a video like this took 20 minutes to download.

An office worker get frustrated with his computer and starts smashing it up.

That it went viral back then, when it was simply emailed around, says a lot.

But it was a fake.

 Wired – Licciardi decided he wanted to be a “disgruntled employee,” which gave his boss an idea. “It was pretty ad hoc,” Jankowski says. “We had some computers that had died and monitors and keyboards that weren’t working, so we basically set that up in a cubicle on a desk.”

Jankowski directed the shoot, as Licciardi went to town on a broken monitor and an empty computer case. It took two attempts. “The first take, people were laughing so hard we had to do a second one,” Licciardi says.

They converted the video to MPEG-1, so that it’d work best on Windows Media Player and reach the largest amount of people. (“Great resolution—352 x 240,” Jankowski adds, laughing.) They put them on promo CDs and handed them out at trade shows with a company brochure; then they forgot about them.

Over the next year, badday.mpg began to circulate through various companies. The large file caused some problems. “Loronix would get calls from these companies saying, ‘Hey you know this video of yours is getting passed around, and it’s crashing email servers,’” Licciardi says.

The story of the BAD DAY guy HERE


10 Comments on One of the World’s First Viral Videos Was a Hoax

  1. At a lot of tech companies, including Very Big Software of Redmond, you would get in a lot of trouble if you sent this around.

  2. Left Coast Dan — I meant to say “at the time”. I remember that Gates made it his personal business to know who was sending around junk email in large broadcasts; server bandwidth being a critical resource. I’m not sure if ever actually happened, but there grew the company legend of “that dummy, So-And-So, being canned for it.”


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