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January 20, 2014 6:55 PM   Subscribe

Sad YouTube: The Lost Treasures Of The Internet’s Greatest Cesspool Mark Slutsky, of Sad YouTube (previously) writes about the, "Moments of melancholy, sadness and saudade from the lives of strangers, gleaned from the unfairly maligned ocean of YouTube comments."
posted by cendawanita (14 comments total) 30 users marked this as a favorite

 
Saudade, for people likewise unenlightened. What a lovely word.
posted by oulipian at 7:09 PM on January 20 [5 favorites]


Someday someone will describe finding articles like this on Buzzfeed in the same terms. Not quite enough to redeem the cesspool they're hidden in but... so close. Fished out, polished and allowed to shine in their own light, you could almost believe the rest was worth it.
posted by mhoye at 7:17 PM on January 20


Necessary: Telestar
posted by HuronBob at 7:31 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


...an accidental oral history of American life over the last 50 years written by the site’s millions of visitors every day.

Oh. No point me reading about it then, as a non-American. Shame, as up until that point I was quite interested.
posted by turbid dahlia at 7:46 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


Love this.

A painting that otherwise you might pass by can suddenly transfixing in the right frame. If I were (hah) reading youtube comments, I'd probably skim right over these. But curated like this, the emotional impact is stunning.
posted by bunderful at 8:04 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


"The YouTube comment section may be the world’s biggest information trash heap, but where do archeologists go when they’re trying to understand the lives and ways of ancient civilizations? They look in their garbage."

Damn straight. Let's amend the rule to "Yes, read the comments. Read the comments with shields up, but be ready for the unexpected."
posted by maudlin at 8:23 PM on January 20 [2 favorites]


The comments are so much better than the commentary. Not really about "American" life at all, turbid dahlia: even when the details are specific the themes are pretty universal.
posted by subdee at 8:28 PM on January 20 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure the ocean of YouTube comments is entirely FAIRLY maligned. But there is gold to be found there, just like there is gold to be found in the processed waste from sewage treatment plants. I'm glad someone else is going the work of refining, because personally, I lack both the strength and the stomach to do it myself.
posted by hippybear at 9:53 PM on January 20


The more off the beaten path a video is, the more interesting the comments. All videos will have some crap comments, but compared to some popular current song or other vid, the comments are gold, often.
posted by maxwelton at 11:40 PM on January 20


My favourite thing of 2014 so far.
posted by colie at 12:12 AM on January 21


If you want good youtube comments, the rule is simple- just look for videos that children don't watch so much. For instance, classical music videos often have very intelligent comments.
posted by leibniz at 1:08 AM on January 21 [1 favorite]


But there is gold to be found there, just like there is gold to be found in the processed waste from sewage treatment plants.

With all that manure there must be a pony in there somewhere!
posted by Jahaza at 7:05 AM on January 21


"The YouTube comment section may be the world’s biggest information trash heap, but where do archeologists go when they’re trying to understand the lives and ways of ancient civilizations? They look in their garbage."

Except that you have this backwards. This isn't flotsam. This is the best facade people have to put forward in public.

This is the most chronicled era in human history and the words are used to hide certain truths people are trying to avoid.

Where tomorrow's historians will have to dig will not be on this medium because that is where everyone wants to draw their attention.

It will be nearly impossible to find the real stuff -- but this white noise is neither garbage nor gold -- just a puff of smoke used for misdirection...
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 8:08 AM on January 21


turbid dahlia: "Oh. No point me reading about it then, as a non-American. Shame, as up until that point I was quite interested."

Because it's a bad idea to read about other countries? Eek!
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 8:58 PM on January 25


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