You’re dutifully re-watching the latest One Direction video for the 617th time when it hits you: there’s 6,124 likes. There’s 461 comments. BUT THE VIEW COUNT IS JUST 301. Has your love for your favourite band gone too far? Have you actually BROKEN THE INTERNET? No. Sit up properly, pay attention and get ready for lesson 1 in Pop School. In this very long video number boffin Brady Haran explains why 301 views is the stuff of every pop fan’s nightmares.
For busy types: If a video only has a few hundred views, YouTube are not too worried if they’re ‘real’ or just some Record Label Boss paying his employees to hit replay until their fingers fall off. But once the views cross about 300 a series of checks take place to ensure some major manipulation isn’t going on. This process takes about half a day, and in the meantime the view count is paused. In short: you didn’t break the internet.