There needs to be some version of the Five Stages of Grief for how we deal with viral promotional videos that may or may not be staged – something like Entertainment, Suspicion, Disbelief, Rage and Acceptance.
Case in point – Hostelworld, a company similar to Airbnb, has a YouTube channel where they challenge world travelers to do crazy stunts. In one recent video, travel blogger Mike Graziano gathered six people together in Sydney, Australia to go skydiving – and they had to call their parents on Skype right before they jumped.
The main video has all of the parents’ reactions cut together, but the parents of Irish traveler Roger Ryan were so hilarious they got their own standalone video of them laughing and swearing. At one point, his mother Mary uses a tablet to take a picture of the computer screen. (Parents don’t always know about the Print Screen function.)
But now, of course, the internet is past the Entertainment stage and is starting to speculate that it was faked for a commercial, because the image of the skydiver is so high-quality. So either that’s an amazing internet connection at that altitude, or the jump was filmed on a GoPro and then the video was replayed over Skype after the fact.
If you have a bunch of time on your hands you can read through the typically in-depth Reddit discussion. Our host Anna Lore has the rundown: