By Jessica Stillman, contributing writer for Inc.
Ever wonder what happens to those YouTube phenomena whose crazy videos go completely viral, garnering millions of views in a matter of days, only to sink back into internet obscurity just as quickly? Karen Cheng knows!
A San Francisco-based designer whose video catalouging her journey from awkward beginner to dance-pro over the course of one year went viral, accumulating more than 3.5 million hits. And while it wasn’t a total bolt from the blue (she gamely admitted to helping the video along with a basic marketing plan), what happened after everyone started clicking on it was a complete shock to Cheng.
“I got just email after email. I got hundreds of these from people who said, ‘hey, I watched your video and now I want tlearn how to play guitar or want to become a better photographer,” she told Inc.com in an interview. The flood of emails tipped her off straight away to the fact that she was on to something with the idea of a public video diary of a learning challenge, so Cheng made a bold decision: she quit her day job rounded up a technical co-founder named Finbarr Taylor and plower all her time and savings into a project to help others learn new skills using the same technique that helped her– the public video record.
Read more about her solution, and what some are calling the anti-Facebook, on