Last week, you may have seen this video of a kid filming himself standing dangerously close to an oncoming train, only to get kicked in the head by a person sitting on the front of the train. According to YouTube, it already has 23.5 million views. Take the 11 seconds to watch it. It's funny.
Though it may look staged, the kid in question, Jared Frank, swears it's legit. He says he was on vacation in Peru and was hoping to create a cinematic selfie with a train rolling by in the background. Well, it's looking as though the video, real or not, is going to earn Frank a ton of money.
On Monday, after confirming he had agreed to work with a California-based representative called Jukin Media, Frank said he was told his video could earn in the range of $2 to $16 per 1,000 views and he would get a 70 per cent share. Precise details will not be known until YouTube releases its regular mid-month report on view tallies.
However, as it stands now, the formula could generate from $30,000 to $250,000 for Frank. There is also a potential for additional revenues from licensing agreements.
This is how the internet handles celebrity, unless of course you're a cat. People are generally less celebrated for accomplishment than they are for coincidence, or a candid moment, or their own cluelessness. When I told PJ about the prospect of endorsement deals for the kid who got kicked in the head, his response was "god thats like an Idiocracy plotline." Sure, maybe. But it doesn't bother me. In the immortal words of Scumbag Steve, "The internet made me and I’m fucking running with it, wouldn’t you? What choice do I have? You kind of owe me for the laughs no? Fuck you. You do. Love or hate me, I’m fucking human."