Watching the Web – the Skype Laughter Chain
Hi there. I’m Nick Wright and I work in online marketing here at Skype. You may have seen my recent posts on the affiliate blog. I’d like to just let you know a little more about how our laughter chain is doing out on the web.
In his recent anthropological introduction to YouTube, Professor Michael Wesch, chose to reflect on the curious position of the webcam for the modern internet user. In a paraphrase of Carl Sagan’s poem after seeing the first “earth-rise” photo from the Voyager 1 spacecraft, Wesch referred to the webcam, sitting near our monitors, as:
“the little glass dot..That’s there. That’s somewhere else. That’s everybody.
On the other side of that little glass dot is everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you have ever heard of, everyone who is living out their lives that has access to the internet, billions of potential viewers, and your future self among them. Some have called it both the biggest and the smallest stage, the most public space in the world, from the privacy of our own homes. … it is not just what you make of it … it is what we make of it
…the little glass dot..the eyes of the world.”
It’s a strikingly poetic way to think of the internet video experience and a great way to think of the new vistas of possibility opened up by video calling. Above all, as it appeared a month into the release of the Skype Laughter Chain, I couldn’t help drawing a comparison between the phenomenal response to our video and this view of the online video population.
Since the launch on July 1st, the video has been seen by almost 6 million people worldwide around the internet but what has really rocked our world is that almost 7,000 of you left a video response in our player. A big thank you to everyone who participated . Out of all those, we’ve added about 450 great laughs to our chain, which now comes in at around one hour and fifteen minutes. To give you a little taster, here’s a short hilarious preview of the full chain:
Above everything, observing the response to the original video has been exceptionally gratifying and deeply heartening for everyone involved here at Skype and we certainly feel we’ve had a similar privileged insight into our own users and online video viewers, to the one that Professor Wesch described above.
We thought the least we could do would be to say thanks to all those that contributed to the chain by offering them Skype credit for 5 hours free calls to landlines and mobiles on Skype. So, if you find yourself appear in the chain (up until August 31st), please send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, including your name, Skype ID, the country you currently live in and 2 pictures of yourself so we can identify you in the chain. Please get back to us by September 30th to claim your voucher.