Lessons from EverySecondCounts videos
Posted February 12, 2017on:
If there is any doubt lingering from my critique of the STonline weather tweeter, let me remove it — I am not a fan because the tweeted content barely passes for humour.
But I am a fan of a recently released YouTube video by a Singapore entity.
The video was a bit late in coming and borrowed heavily from the original from the Netherlands.
Several other entities from countries in Europe chimed in with their own videos as did individuals and organisations from countries outside the continent. Here is a playlist of some of the better ones.
The German video provided some insights that the others did not. The initial grassroots effort was coordinated between a few European TV teams.
The starter pack have a website, everysecondcounts.eu to encourage other European countries to join in. (Update: The site now includes other continents.)
The humour of these videos and the website URL is at another level.
Each video often relies on the same formula (a narrator with a Trump-like voice), the same sweeping vista opening and strategic snapshots to drive points home quickly, and the closing remark “America First, [Name of Country] Second”.
Despite the formula, each country makes the introductory video their own. They make reference that are unique to their country, might take potshots at other countries, and troll Trump slyly or overtly.
The companion website URL alone is clever. It is a reference to timely responses (every bit of time matters) and getting involved (every country that might be “second” should stand up and be counted). It is activism that uses humour to make valid and powerful points.
Humour is a weapon. In the minds and hands of the skilled, it is powerful because it disarms before stabbing at the heart of the matter. If wielded by the less able, it hurts the message and the messenger.