SEOUL: The wildly infectious and relentlessly repetitive childrens song “Baby Shark” became the most-watched YouTube video on Monday, with more than seven billion plays.
This South Korean-produced song is cursed by parents and teachers around the world. It has developed from the field of children’s YouTube to a global virality. The mesmerizing and addictive melody is inspired by hypnotic color videos.
The English version of the song “Baby Shark Dance” received more than 7 billion views on YouTube around 0400 GMT on Monday, replacing Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankees “Despacito” as the most watched video on the platform.
The ubiquitous children’s songs and song bugs, first uploaded to YouTube in June 2016, are a mix of American campfire songs produced by Seoul-based production company Pinkfong.
Its success on YouTube paved the way to enter the global music charts, and it was ranked 32nd on the Billboard Hot 100 in January 2019.
On its way to winning global viral prestige, it attracted many adult fans: the Washington Nationals baseball team used it as the national anthem and won the World Series last year, prompting the White House to play a role in the celebration.
A town in the United States played the song on a loop, while another town in West Palm Beach, Florida used the melody to discourage the homeless from gathering in public places.
It has also been pressed into anti-pandemic service, with a coronavirus-themed version, “Wash Your Hands”, teaching children the importance of personal hygiene.
Two of the last four tracks to hold the most-played record on YouTube are South Korean — rapper Psys megahit “Gangnam Style” held the title for more than three years until it was dethroned by Wiz Khalifas “See You Again”.