Several days ago we and a number of other tech and gaming web sites posted up word that a brief YouTube video with no sound had been generating a lot of buzz. That video supposedly showed a behind-closed-doors presentation of Nintendo's new console. We and others reported on this video up with a big "Rumor" in our headline. Now it turns out our caution was needed. The video has now been revealed to be created as part of a student project in France designed specifically to create something that would go viral.
The Strategy Interactive blog site revealed its involvement in the creation of the video. The students were tasked with making a viral video that would generate at least 5,000 views. In that respect the project was highly successful as the original YouTube video has now been viewed over 600,000 times since launching just a few days ago. Ironically the second highest video created as part of the same project (well behind the Nintendo console video at "just" 22,000 views) was also a video game related video about how the portals in Valve's Portal game series could be used in the real world.
The video just shows that with just a little tweaking and suggestion anything can be made to look somewhat authentic. It certainly did the job with not only a ton of views but also lots of news stories on the web mentioning the video. The creators of the video knew that any news about Nintendo's next console, no matter where it came from, would be considered as legitimate news by web sites such as ours.