5 Types Of YouTube Videos That Need To Die

There are many great videos uploaded to YouTube each and every day. Which isn’t surprising when you consider that 100 hours of video are uploaded to the site every minute. That’s a lot of clips of cute cats and dumb dogs. But clips of cute cats and dumb dogs are welcomed, unlike some other types of videos which are either pointless, annoying, stupid, unnecessary, or all of the above.

These are the genres of videos that no one should watch. They deserve to get zero views and zero comments, because they don’t deserve a place on the most popular video sharing site in existence. What follows are five of the worst examples of amateur video that, should you value your place in society, you should avoid uploading to YouTube at all costs.

Unboxing Hardware

The craze for unboxing videos started somewhere around 2006, just as YouTube was growing into the behemoth it now is. Against all the odds these videos appear to be very popular, with many racking up millions of views. This despite the fact that they’re the most banal genre of video in existence.

Hardware video reviews make sense, as does footage of someone using a new device even if they’re not voicing their opinion about it. But what is the point of videos merely showing an individual unboxing a piece of hardware? So, I now know what’s in the box, and that helps me how exactly?

Reactionary Reactions

Reaction videos are, as you may have guessed by the name, videos of people reacting to stuff. It could be another video on YouTube, a real-world event or piece of news, or even something happening in an individual’s personal life. Regardless, these videos are rarely, if ever, anything but embarrassing.

The video embedded above is the perfect example of this genre and why it needs to die. This girl is upset, and by that I mean crying and ranting, because Kristen Stewart cheated on Robert Pattinson. She’s just a fan with no connection to the former couple, but that doesn’t stop her getting extremely angry at the news. In the interactive, multimedia dictionary of the future, this video (and others like it) should be posted as the definition of ‘Annoying‘.

TV Recording

If you’re ever tempted to record something off the TV and post the resulting video on YouTube… don’t. Honestly, you’d be better off just not bothering than attempting this trick that results in videos that, at best, look like they’ve been shot with a potato, at worst, are unwatchable.

These types of video are invariably uploaded by n00bs who believe that a) this is the only way to record something off the television, and b) that doing so means they aren’t breaking the intellectual property rights of the broadcaster. Both of which are wrong, plain and simple.

Photo Montages

Photo montages have their place in the world, but that place isn’t on YouTube, a site designed to house videos, not a series of still images pieced together under a cheesy soundtrack. These never look good, and are always a source of disappointment if stumbled upon while searching for a real video.

The video embedded above is a striking example of the genre which has all the elements needed to demonstrate why photo montages need to die. We have 11 minutes of photos of Morgan Fairchild, who no one under the age of 40 will even have heard of. All soundtracked with True Devotion by Samantha Fox. Please, make it stop.

Attention Seeking

This is a rather vague genre as it deals with all those videos created by attention seekers. You could argue that you’d have to be an attention seeker to upload a video to YouTube in the first place, but there’s a subtle distinction between wanting to be a YouTube celebrity and using a “Look at me!” gimmick (rather than quality content) to achieve that goal.

The video embedded above demonstrates the problem perfectly. This girl wants to teach the world to speak Japanese, which is really generous of her. But in order to stand out from the crowd she decides to put her rather large assets on display while doing so. Cue millions of views from frustrated men everywhere. None of whom want to learn Japanese.

Conclusion

If you find any of these videos entertaining then that’s great; carry on watching them or even uploading your own examples of each genre. But I suspect I’m not alone in having had enough of these particular types of videos and wishing they would just go away.

As with lots of websites that rely on user-generated content, YouTube offers a fantastic opportunity to get creative with videos and offer something great to the world. None of the videos embedded above, or the genres they belong to, fulfill that promise. You can do better than this, Internet, so go out there and prove it.

Image Credit: Jakob Montrasio

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46 Comments -

John

You need to leave Hannah Minx and her magnificent tits out of this. She gets a pass.

Dave P

She’s one of the worst perpetrators of this crime! What happened to relying on something other than boobs to achieve fame and fortune?

dragonmouth

“What happened to relying on something other than boobs to achieve fame and fortune?”
If boobs is all you’ve got……………..
Haven’t you ever heard of “When you’ve got it, flaunt it!”?

Steven

Very good article. If there’s one type of woman I don’t like it’s the one that uses their assets on YouTube. They need to choose one or the other. I’m fine with women wanting to show themselves off in anyway they please, but mixing that with the content their sharing and speaking about is downright ridiculous. I can’t take them seriously or respect them, even if they seem like good people that want to help people. It’s cheap and doesn’t turn me on in the least! I can’t get off to that sexually or mentally with what they’re speaking about. Button up on YouTube or unbutton it on a porn website, then I’ll respect you. Good riddance.

Generate

Or a woman can wear whatever the she wants, yes? If you can’t take a woman (or anyone) seriously by what they wear or body part they are showing then the problem isn’t really them. You are the one associating such things with the lack of respect. Maybe you are watching too many porn and can’t help but think of such things when you see those women on youtube?

Dave P

I agree, Steven. It’s not like I’m anti-boobs, obviously, but when they’re used to gain views it cheaps the whole process.

Generate, she can, yes, but men aren’t as stupid as you may think they are. I can see through this attempt to gain views with a cheap gimmick, and I’m sure I’m not alone.

Tom W

I did an unboxing of my Oculus Rift when I got it, but I used it as a chance to detail some of the features and specifications of the Rift. I also created a second video with some gameplay footage.

Swaminathan V

Unboxing videos have been useful for me in the past when I wanted to know first hand what a mobile models in different markets had different, like a US version might not have a type of headset vs an European or an international version. Also, it helps in opening the package in a right way as I am very bad in taking out things from a box.

Dave P

Tom, you went beyond merely unboxing the hardware, so you offered some worth to viewers. The standard seems to be stopping the video as soon as the package has been opened, and I personally fail to see what’s so great about that.

Swaminathan, if you’re unable to open boxes then you need more than just unboxing videos.

Tom W

@Dave: Value can be kind of arbitrary. Some people may find value in simply seeing the size of the included objects, or seeing them without the marketing gloss.
The other way of looking at it is that the videos may be of value to the people uploading them for whatever reason. Most of the videos on my channel I made just to help me improve me speaking and presentation skills, among other things.

Doc

How about these: Gameplay videos that pretend to be an episode of a TV wrestling episode. Seriously, I do not need to see how lousy you are with a controller, especially if I’m looking for an episode I missed.
Leave the “unboxing” videos alone, at least those that are done by *professionals.*

Swaminathan V

Ditto for soccer game highlights. I try to search for them and I get a video game simulation of the match. Very annoying!

Dave P

I guess that comes under mistagging videos, which I agree is very annoying!

Ryan Dube

TV recordings and photo montages – I HATE those. That’s right, all-caps HATE.

Dave P

VENT, Ryan, VENT!!!1

Joel L

You hit the nail on the head, Dave! The sad thing is that I’m sure we can all think of plenty more YouTube video types that ALSO need to die.

Dave P

This is just the tip of the iceberg, for sure, but we have to start somewhere, right?

steve

like anything 240p or lower…….

steve

or music videos that have poor audio and photo / lyric video… usually in 360 or 240p…. and almost exclusively titled with “official”

steve

or any video where there are 3 or more captions on the screen at a time, or captions that take up more than 20% of the screen at any time – without being relevant to the current video… or even small captions that remain for the entire video.

Jo-anne P

I cant find the share buttons on any pages anymore… wonder what I am doing wrong

Chris H

Unboxing videos are so silly. Here’s a great (but old) parody of them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrdHe__tt3U

Dave P

That’s brilliant, and I hadn’t previously seen it. I’m glad I’m not the only MUOer who hates this genre of video too.

Barrel

Once upon a time, someone saw bad footage and commented, “Looks like this was shot with a potato”. Now everyone thinks they’re hilarious when they relate a camera to a potato. The problem is, jokes are only funny the first time, if even then. This news upset Carlos Mencia fans everywhere and they were all lame ever after. The End.

Michael

Was your comment typed with a potato?

Dave P

Ugh, yeah, the potato comments got real old real quick. Perhaps they’ll make it into a future article about memes that need to die :)

Lisa M

I can count to potato ;-)

Lisa M

Hi Dave, what is your take on “mashup” videos or YTP (YouTube “Poop”)? Laurence Lessig says that mashups are an integral part of creative content. IP holders tend not to agree. But for example if I want to post a Family Guy mashup in tribute to Brian and Stewie’s friendship, with all Brian and Stewie clips with a soundtrack of Stewie singing “Everything I Do, I Do It For You,” is that wrong? I’m showing my appreciation for the show and this particular storyline. Or if I took the clip from “Say Anything” where John Cusack is holding up the boombox, and replaced Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” with “Biko,” as a tribute to Mandela? Is that bad too? I could do my own but I’ve tried lifting those boomboxes and man, they are heavy :-) A lot of people are using “Fast & Furious” clips on YouTube in mashup tributes to Paul Walker. Is that wrong and if so why?

Ramandeep S

That’s very right. I appreciate the article. Special those photo montages. I hate them and I never watch any unboxing video. That is just time wastage.

Abhishek Tavasalkar

I think unboxing videos need not be on the list. They very helpful a whole lotta tyms. Other four categories I agree all in good terms. In such kind of situation it get hard to find a quality video. I guess the other type of videos that need recognition here are the song lyric video uploaded. There are tons of videos song lyric video uploaded for a single song.

Dave P

Please explain how unboxing videos are ever helpful? That’s a genuine plea.

Generate

I don’t personally mind those video even if I have no interest in watching them. If there are people who enjoy that sort of thing, then great. Youtube (and the video uploader) nabs another fan.

Dave P

In the conclusions I invited everyone who enjoys these types of video to carry on as they were. No one has to listen to little ol’ me, obviously.

Alexei

While I agree that most of these videos are a little silly and sometimes annoying, I can also see their intrinsic value as cultural products. I don’t mean to sound pedantic, as I am merely just another fella, but many of these videos provide valuable information about our society, and dare I say humanity. For instance, the very last video you mentioned with the girl teaching Japanese reminds me of that idea that sex sells. As for the other videos, well, they too reveal some important things that we tend to overlook.

It’s no coincidence that unboxing videos tend to be about not-so-cheap hardware and rarely about cheaper valuables, pardon the oxymoron. I for one watch many of these videos as an alternative, even if temporary, to actually owning many the things they (advertise?). It’s similar to the feeling many people have at the sight of sport cars and jewelry. Sure, we don’t own them, but not because of that can’t we stop from fantasizing about one day having them in our hands.

As you might have been able to tell by my writing, English is not my native language, so apologies for that. But because of this, I find videos like the ones you labeled as ‘reactionary reactions’ particularly helpful. For one, I am able to hear everyday Americans (or other Anglophones) talk about topics that concern them in a relaxed (voice?). Knowing how embarrassing these can be, I’d imagine that they are only a small sample of similar opinions.

Finally and in defense of the video shoot-ages, I can only say that I appreciate them very much. Many times I find myself looking for the clip of a show that has caught my attention. Fortunately I’m not the only one who’s found some moments worth recording, even if in a low quality. I certainly don’t see the people who upload these videos as heroes, although many are tagged with terms that connote disgrace or lewdness . I’m by no means trying to impose my opinions onto you, nor scolding your own, but again, it’s doesn’t hurt to broaden our definitions of ‘worthiness.’ The Library of Congress did so not so long, perhaps we should follow suit.

Dave P

You make some interesting points…

Did we need a reminder that sex sells?
I’ve never thought about unboxing videos in that way, but surely living vicariously can be achieved by watching someone use a product rather than merely unboxing it?
If you want to hear people speak English then listen to talk radio stations online. You certainly shouldn’t be using this girl as an example of an ordinary American.

Thanks for the comment. You’re more than entitled to your opinion, and I’m grateful you chose to let me know what they are in such a gracious manner. If only all Internet commenters were so polite.

Clive R

This is an article about what the author considers to be pointless videos which is kind of ironic since the article itself is also pointless – just as a video about what you dislike about youtube would be. The chances are that everything will be of interest to at least one other person and that is a justification for allowing it. You are not forced to watch any videos and most are identifiable by title – you don’t like “unboxing” don’t watch. You cant help being stimulated by legally attired breasts – then again dont watch – or turn down the sound and concentrate on your interpretation by relieving yourself!
If you want to complain about you tube then complain about something useful – such as their recent insistence that you must use your google plus ID rather than the one you are known by on youtube if you want to make comments

Dave P

A number of commenters have clearly been entertained by this article, hence it isn’t pointless. Perhaps some people have been entertained by the videos embedded in the post, so they can carry on doing so. No harm, no foul.

Of course it’s my fault the girl in the last video chooses to show off her ample cleavage. How silly of me! And there was I arguing that she shouldn’t feel the need to use her body to gain fame and fortune. Tar and feather me now for erring in such a way.

We did cover the Google+ YouTube commenting debacle. You do realize there is more than one article on this site, yes?

Here, for your reading pleasure – http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/youtubes-comments-section-now-cleaned-up-courtesy-of-google/

And here – http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/everybody-hates-google-we-ask-you-results/

Boussakka

HA HA Good and Funny article, I agree with you, I hope someday this kind of videos will disappear.
Thanks.

Najib Dajani

I enjoy unboxing videos of tech gear. When you buy something new, opening the box is the best part.

Thanks to your article, I am now subscribed to the Hannah Minx channel. I’d never heard of her before.

Dave P

Then carry on enjoying them :)

Vyom

All of the videos posted are stupid, yeah, except for the first. Unboxing videos are great for someone who wants to know what accessories they can expect from the package.
That doesn’t need to die.

Drew M.

My absolute biggest peeve are montage videos that have text but no narration, like poorly-made top 10 lists. Thank you, jerkwad, for making me sit through two minutes of bad music and low-res pictures in order to read a list that would normally take about 15 seconds.

Jason

Hi there,

The camera recordings of television programs are just clumsy methods of circumventing the automatic takedown bots on YouTube for protected content. If you upload the actual video it will normally be caught almost immediately and removed.

Josh

You cirtanly dont pay attention to things often…, Mr.Author.. fist of all, the unboxing videos help us in many ways. if its cheap, what all contents is in the box, how it works, and so on so forth. second, people, who Donot have money, can see “These unboxing videos”, and get exited, like the xbox one, being unboxed. i dont have over $300.00, cause im in jobcore, so i like to see it being unboxed, and how the it boots, then what the home scree looks like, and finally, for the thaughts out of my mind, Not only to become pupular, but to figure out if you want to buy it, or not… like for instance, this guy on youtube whos called soldierknowsbest, does these kind of reviews, and its verry helpful.., with out these videos, people would just be looking at pictures.. ive done a MW3 PC unboxing/installation on my channel josh7120, and its verry helpful to people. got quite few comments.

dragonmouth

Simple things for simple minds.

Neil

Ummm, I think YOUR post is a total waste of time!! Boring boring, at least there is an element of entertainment or use in them.