Where the hell is Matt?


Hi all!
Matt Harding was a guy that lived for producing and playing videogames only. However, in 2003 he decided that there was more to life than working, and started travelling around the world. Together with his friend, they thought it would be funny if Matt would do ‘his dance’ in front of the camera, a dance that could best be described as a kid on a sugar rush. When they saw the result, Matt thought it looked funny and decided to do this everywhere he went.
He uploaded a video of his dance across the world on his blog, and noticed that in 2005 someone had uploaded it on YouTube. From that point on, he became increasingly more famous and his video went quite viral.

It was due to the nature of social media that his videos started spreading and became viral. Without all these people sharing it on their social networking profiles, Matt would probably not have become as famous as he is now.

 

However, later down the path, Matt received a call from a chewing gum company called Stride, and they asked him if he would be willing to make a dancing video for them. Furthermore, Visa hired him to feature in several advertisements in which he appeared dancing. Now you can even buy T-shirts, a book, the videos, and the soundtracks to the videos on his website http://www.wherethehellismatt.com.

I really like the core idea of how it all started; Matt dancing a silly dance around the globe and uploading a funny video on the Internet. However, what quite disappoints me now is that it has gone way beyond just a viral video but has been turned into merchandise. Even though there is the possibility that Matt provides all the content on his website himself, it seems less authentic to me now that there are sponsors and a webshop.

I was wondering, what do you think? Did this go over the top and should it have stayed a viral video on social media, or is Matt smart to obtain sponsors and start a website?

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2 thoughts on “Where the hell is Matt?

  1. Hey! Well I really like the idea and I like travelling. If you visit the site it says “He wishes he’d learned sooner that you can get better at most things just by doing them over and over again.” so he believes in that ideology and he doesn’t want to make games. He turned something he loves doing into something out of which he can get more. I think it’s nice it went “over the top” because I feel like it could push more people to travel and make something cool out of it or just realize that by having social media so many more things are possible. I mean Threadless started by a thread… If it’s a cool idea, why not make it as popular as we can and also entrepreneur-like. There are more videos on the Internet with people traveling and dancing who make people smile and being sponsored for what you love doing seems like something most of the people strive for.

  2. Nice video! About a year ago I watched something similar that was shared on Facebook by a guy from Belgium. It got around to me, because one of my friends was lucky enough to meet him in Bromo, Indonesia. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jhwHtBWlP8 This video definitely didn’t go as viral as Matt’s, but i definitely do find it a lot more entertaining than Matt’s :P.

    I do however agree with you that it may not be right that Matt turned his experience into something that you can put a monetary value on, but in this day and age, people have learnt to turn life lessons and experiences into something that can teach the world, or help them make money from it. We can take notes from Matt, and where he came from to where he is now, to learn and use the power of social media to make an empire for ourselves, or help change the world and create a better life for a person less fortunate than ourselves for instance.

    The amazing way information goes viral on the internet, whether it be from photographs, video’s etc, has shown me that anything is possible, and we could all use Matt’s example which proves this to us 🙂

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