Should we really make Charles Ramsey famous for what he did and does?

Last night as I saw the video views for THAT video interview by Charles Ramsey  (who is a hero) – go through the roof – and The Gregory Brothers – auto-Tune treatment of it posted in a video they uploaded to YouTube yesterday I wondered how much money would the man himself make from this all?

But more than this – when all the excitement goes down – should we have made him famous in the first place.

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Charles Ramsey, dead giveaway, deadgiveaway, #deadgiveaway and T-shirts that will make him money

What does it say about the times? That didn’t take long. An auto-tune video of Charles Ramsey, the man who helped Amanda Berry escape to freedom after being held captive for over a decade, is making its way across the Internet.

Many people will tell you this was the logical next step in the meme-ifying of Ramsey—a man who, like Sweet Brown and Antoine Dodson before him, is certain to become a fixture in popular culture (at least for the foreseeable future). That Ramsey has become the title character—more cartoon than hero—in this narrative remains the most troubling aspect of yesterday’s news.

And now he comes with music – and maybe soon even T-shirts  – thanks to

Music and merchandise – have always played a part…

From Martin Luther King Jr. to U.S President Barack Obama, music has helped add an emotional dimension to the most powerful words of our time. But in an age of 24-hour news, social media and sharing that can quickly go viral, the words that now become famous tend to be ephemeral and light as air.

And so Ramsey’s three-minute interview had all of the key ingredients needed for a modern-day meme and remix.

It was oddly poignant. It was unvarnished. It sliced through the noise. And it was filled with moments of unintended hilarity, as when he referred to the suspect, his neighbour, and casually noted: “I barbecue with this dude. We eat ribs and whatnot and listen to salsa music.”

Expect those words to appear on T-shirts this summer.

Actually – right now – thanks to Spreadshirt –

With parts of the proceeds going straight to the man himself, Charles Ramsey, as soon as we can find him. Oh and if you havent heard the remix tune which has gone viral – you really must do:


How do you make something viral – in nature?

As an agency, as a trainer, I have my own thoughts on what makes something go viral – and so it was interesting to see what someone else had to say on it.

Especially after my own thoughts have lead one client down a blind alley…. we wanted to know why and how.

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Ok you might not have seen it – have a look

I got something forwarded to me the other day.

I dont even know whence it came (check out me, I say wence)

It came from the ether of the internet from that ever changing mistress of the ephemeral distraction – the twitter feed.

Pop back and we can chat about it.

Have a look –

Now what do you think? Is it real or is it a great marketing idea?

For me, old gazer behind the curtains of the wizards of oz, its a very obvious social media campaign by someone

I.e. it’s a hoax – just like the classic youtube social faux pas – which launched the idea of things going viral on the net.

The woman chatting with friends at a party, a bit drunk about her boss, and he is stood behind her…

If you never seen it – worth a look – it’s on youtube.

Anyhoo, it just made me think about how things go viral – and how somethings are obviously meant for the social space.

However, after reading the wonderful book by Brian Solis (the new grand-daddy of all things royally kick ass in the social space) he has made me rethink the simplicity of it all.

I suppose as he so rightly puts it…we are all here to relearn 🙂