Not Taking the Easy Way on This One

So I was looking at something on Engadget.com on the relative activity of links on the Internet over time. Based on where the content was housed, links got most of their activity within a certain, very small, window of time. Most links reached their activity zenith within half an hour to half a day. Solid evidence that you should update your blog more often than I do if you want traffic.

At the bottom of the post was a video that had gone viral, receiving over 35 million hits on youtube. I watched the first half and then skipped ahead to see if something actually changed before the end. I was not rewarded. I recommend the first minute to get a sense of the whole thing, so you know what I’m talking about.

You may be saying that I’ve just wasted your time. In essence, yes I have, but I did so for a reason. It would be too easy to say that this video is a complete and stupid waste of time and leave it at that. The question is why it’s a waste of time, and why have over 35 million people wasted their time watching it.

Why it’s a waste of time seems easy. You’ve not gained anything by spending the time. You’re not smarter. You’re no closer to reaching your professional goals, and the laundry’s not any closer to being done. Some might argue that the whole experience has made you dumber, but I can’t agree with that. It’s not like I made you watch Jersey Shore, which has been shown to cause you harm. Some others might argue for the palate cleansing benefits.

The question I’m trying to ask you here is “Is there an objective standard for what is a waste of time?” What’s your definition? Or would telling me be a waste of time?

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