The JK Wedding video has been a huge success, and not only in terms of affording the couple a great deal of publicity. It has also made money for YouTube and Sony due to the use of the Chris Brown track Forever. Unfortunately, the actual video creators won’t see a penny.
The JK Wedding Dance
The JK Wedding Entrance Dance video has been a phenomenon in the same way the Susan Boyle on Britain’s Got Talent clips were. Literally overnight, fame has been foisted on previously unknown, ordinary members of the public, with millions of people around the world watching them strut their stuff on YouTube.
I’ve already spoken about the JK Wedding video once because I see it as a blatant attempt at gaining fame. I don’t believe for a second that Jill Peterson and Kevin Heinz just did this to entertain their friends. They staged it, videoed it, and uploaded it to YouTube because they knew there was a chance it could go viral. Which it then did.
Chris Brown Forever
The dance down the aisle is obviously set to a track by Chris Brown, the guy accused of beating up his then-girlfriend Rihanna (he has since admitted and apologized for the incident via YouTube). The song, Forever, is a big part of the video as without it the dance would be an entirely less interesting affair.
The video is quite clearly copyright infringement. Forever is played in full and is the main focus of the video rather than an incidental, in the background, type thing. Rather then demand the video be removed, Brown’s record label Sony instead chose to latch on to the popularity of the clip and monetize it for its own ends. As is the company’s right.
In The Money
As documented by Google itself, Sony started running text ads on the clip and added Click-to-Buy links underneath the video in an attempt to persuade viewers to purchase the track on Amazon or iTunes. It obviously worked because the previously out-of-favor Brown suddenly shot up the iTunes chart, and the year-old Forever is now in the Top 10.
The click-through rate from the video to the featured advertising is supposedly very high, and interest in both the Forever music video and other Chris brown videos on YouTube also increased in wake of the JK Wedding Dance video. Which all adds up to a bumper payday for YouTube, Sony, and Chris Brown himself.
Interestingly, it’s unlikely that Jill and Kevin will actually see any money from all this increased spending, even though it’s as a direct result of the routine they planned and executed on video. But seeing as they chanced their arm in using the track in the first place I guess that’s the way it should be.
I still don’t like the video or the way we’ve all been suckered in by it. But the JK Wedding Entrance Dance video does show that a viral video on YouTube can be great news for the people involved, even if they didn’t plan to be involved. Now if YouTube could only develop a strategy for further utilizing the power of viral video, it would soon make a profit.