After I posted an item about some online experiments with audio, a reader observed that Suburban Haiku would appreciate the piece. Suburban Haiku is penned by Peyton Price, a self-described “denizen of the suburbs for more than 10 years” and author of both the book Suburban Haiku and the blog of the same name.
The blog has risen to popularity based in part on the fact that Price doesn’t just share the text of her “hilarious and heartfelt” poems on the site. She performs them and posts the audio online, using the drop-dead-easy audio tool SoundCloud. Here’s an example, dealing with the possibility of a snow day:
That particular haiku has had 164 plays—not exactly on the same scale as the 2007 viral hit “Charlie Bit My Finger,” but Price’s inventive use of the haiku format, her pitch-perfect readings, the SoundCloud format (which includes the ability to include a thumbnail image with each clip) and the blog platform with its commenting option, combine to make Suburban Haiku easy to get sucked into, and easy to share.
Based on its merits, audio should long ago have cemented its place among online formats.
For those who work in the social Web, audio has long been a perplexing subject. Based on its merits, audio should long ago have cemented its place among online formats. Among its virtues, audio doesn’t require you to be riveted to your monitor. You can listen with your eyes closed. You can do something else while you’re listening. Audio is, in fact, the only online format that doesn’t require you to give 100 percent of your attention to your screen.
But, as a comprehensive and well-researched article from Digg—titled “Is This Thing On?”—points out, it’s hard to point to an instance of anything purely audio “Viral Audio: Experiments in Making Sound Spread.”
“Audio never goes viral. If you posted the most incredible story—literally, the most incredible story that has ever been told since people have had the ability to tell stories, it will never, ever get as many hits as a video of a cat with a moustache.”
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