My 15 Minutes of Fame

It was Andy Warhol who said "everyone will be famous for 15 minutes." Since he said that, the expression "fifteen minutes of fame" has become part of our popular culture. This is especially true in the internet age where anyone can upload video to the web for all to see. Some of the funniest stuff online is "produced" by ordinary folks. The concept was started with the show "America's Funniest Home Videos" back in the 1980's and has mushroomed into an entire industry. The difference now is videos that are good will grow virally through the internet and could be viewed by millions.

YawpBox is the latest website that seeks to expand people's 15 minutes of fame. Just like other video sites, you can upload your video for viewing. The catch with YawpBox is they actually produce their own TV show, filmed before a live studio audience (a la "America's Funniest Home Videos") where they broadcast the best videos uploaded to the site. They even give people "homework" where they ask folks to create video on a certain topic. A recent challenge asked viewers to "Do The Most Extreme Thing & You Can Get On TV!" There are some very silly videos in this category.

Just like "America's Funniest Home Videos" or "Candid Camera," YawpBox hopes to exploit the entertainment value of regular folks doing bizarre stuff. I'd much rather watch a show that features regular folks goofing around than some pre-packaged sitcom. I almost always get a laugh out of this type of content.

My own personal 15 minutes of fame came in the winter of 2006. The Hot Dog Truck got vandalized. Apparently my truck was one of 20-25 businesses, homes and vehicles hit in a late night spree. I received a call from the Southborough police on a Saturday alerting me to the vandalism; at the time I didn't know about the spree. I was quite surprised when a news truck pulled up during lunch the following Monday! Talk about a slow news day. While it was upsetting to be vandalized, the incident's exposure on the news led to a jump in business. People flocked to the Hot Dog Truck to wish me well and tell me they saw me on TV!

You can view the news clip HERE.

That clip will never make it to YawpBox as I don't own the rights. But I may be making videos of the Hot Dog Truck in the future to post online. I have always been a bit of a ham and what better forum for a would-be comedian than YawpBox TV?

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