Is it a fad or not?

Hi Class! Is the Harlem Shake a fad or not? Click the link here to read about this popular dance style.  Discuss some of the following ideas:

  • What is a ‘fad’?
  • What makes something spread on the Internet? How did fads spread before the Internet age?
  • Why do you think the Harlem Shake has become so popular?
  • Do you think fads, such as the Harlem Shake are important, or are they just fun?
  • In your opinion, will people remember them in a few decades, or are they just fun for now?

Now, share your trend setting idea. What original idea would you like to see spread across the planet? Why?

Post a thoughtful, insightful and comprehensive response before the end of Wednesday‘s computer class.

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53 Responses to Is it a fad or not?

  1. spencer says:

    The Harlem Shake is great because you can do so much with it. You can make so many versions of the Harlem Shake. The Harlem Shake is important because for some people when they’re sad or something they can watch a Harlem Shake video and it will cheer them up. The Harlem Shake is so popular because it’s funny and everyone likes funny. If you don’t like funny you need to go to the hospital. I don’t think people will remember the Harlem Shake in a decade because it’s something that’s funny in the moment. I say it will last another half a year and then everyone has forgot about it. I would like something that I made up called downhill speed triking. I made this up a couple years ago with my brothers tricycle. I took it and went to a hill and went down ( with a helmet on) and it was so fun because you can go so fast and it would be funny to see adults downhill speed triking.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You make a good point Spencer about dances cheering up people – good observation!

      Downhill speed triking sounds hilarious (and extremely dangerous). Did you ask your brother before using his tricycle? It would be interesting to see if you could get a large following of adults involved in this sport.

  2. serena says:

    The Harlem shake is just for fun and i mean how many people will remember this in 20 years they probably wouldn’t . It’s just like any other dance but it’s not something that people would remember in the future and it is kinda of stupid because you do one move for like 30 sec and then you randomly dance. Basically only boys like it and it doesn’t really do anything for people.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Serena, your response makes an interesting point about boys only liking this dance. Why do you think this is the case? Many of the videos have boys and girls do they not?

      Quick Fix:
      – Remember your audience when writing. For school based activities, use proper spelling and grammar: I is always a capital letter; kind of (not kinda)

  3. Kelsey says:

    The Harlem shake is a very popular dance and I think it will grow. How the Harlem shake started was it was a 1981 a dance done by Albert Boyce was basically when the Harlem shake started and has now grown to today. Now people all over the world are dancing to this 30 second song. Will this song become as popular as Gangnam Style? The Harlem Shake is so popular because you see one person start something funny then everyone thinks It’s Cool. I think the Harlem Shake is Fun to do but It’s getting old. On my phone I saw a picture that showed Gangnam style 2012 then Harlem Shake 2013. I think Harlem Shake will only last another few months because it’s only a 30 second song. When you want to make a viral video you need to find something that’s popular and make a video right away so when people search for the video they will find yours. Personally I don’t like the dance because it’s only 30 seconds of randomness but It is fun to do.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your response Kelsey. Why do you think Gangnam Style is more popular – both “dances” seem simple to do?

      On the topic of viral videos, what has to happen to make something go viral? Many people post things on the Internet, but few of them get millions of hits – why?

      • Kelsey says:

        Well Gagnam Style is a lot more popular because it has more moves and It’s a longer song to dance to. People get viral videos for putting lots of tags for their video then they do something funny.

    • Gabrielle says:

      I actually think it’s more popular then Gangnam Style.

  4. sydney says:

    A fad is something that is very popular at the start and then it dies out because there is nothing to listen otherwise you would be listening to the same thing over and over again. Something spreads on the Internet because the first person watches it and then they tweet it and then they tell everybody else. At the begging people make videos that have the song in the back ground and do a whole bunch of different things to make it a whole different meaning. I think the Harlem Shake became so popular because of the dancing people love to free for all it and the song is so upbeat that it amazing. Most songs fade out but people that make only one song in there career there songs are fads.There just fun for now in 30 years from now there will be a new Harlem Shake. Things that spread before the Internet days were sent by mail or telling. I would love to trend set a idea to help everybody in the world that doesn’t have enough food to give them money so they can live a happy healthy life just like we do

    • Mr. Bell says:

      I like your idea to find food and money for people. There really is no reason for anyone to be homeless and hungry. Think about all of the food going to waste and all of the empty houses, apartments, hotel rooms…How are you going to spread your message?

      Quick Fix: “They are just fun…” (use they’re rather than there)

      • sydney says:

        I am going to spread my message by putting up posters having Pennie drives and whatever i don’t eat instead of throwing it away I will put it on a plate and take it to the food bank.

  5. JaXs0N says:

    A fad is an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something. Once you post something people will tell other people then they get likes, once you have likes it becomes more popular then people see that they have likes so they click it and they like it. The Harlem Shake is hilarious and super entertaining to watch and if anything is funny on the Internet it will become popular. There not really important but there still super funny and should be used just for funnish reasons. The Harkem Shake will just be fun by now

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Is it possible for a fad to develop because of many dislikes (can disliking something be considered a fad)? Explain.

      Quick Fix:
      – “They are (They’re) not really important…”

  6. Shace says:

    this is a fad. An intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something. It spreads because people see a party so they watch it. the Harlem shake is so popular because it is so funny.
    they are to get laughs from people so it is just for fun. I will remember it because i made a video and it is funny so i will remember it.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      What do you find funny? Your response requires more thought and depth to your ideas. You’ve mentioned fun, funny and remember several times. Can you provide a more detailed explanation?

      Quick Fix:
      – Begin sentences with capital letters.
      – I (as a pronoun) is always a capital letter. Do not be influenced by advertising (i’m lovin’ it)!

  7. Jada says:

    The Harlem Shake is a fad. A fad is when a thing such as the Harlem Shake becomes an intense and widely shared enthusiasm for something. Things before the internet was here people talked out things and they read it in the news paper. The reason I think the Harlem Shake became so popular was because the people who made it past it on to people and they pasted on to other people and eventually the whole world would know. I think the Harlem Shake is just for fun and it isn’t important. We could live without it. It is just for fun now. I think a few people in the world would now about it in 30 years. People would remember it in 2014, but it would not be as popular as it is now. For example, Charlie bit my finger, Thrift Shop, etc.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You’re right when you say the world could live without it; this is the case for many fads. That said, when does something become more than a fad? For example, the idea of recycling was a fad and now is something important to many. What do you think?

  8. Kal3b says:

    A fad is and intense and widely shared. It speeds because of people told there friends and the friends told the friends and people liked it. It got a lot of hits. Then every one started making there own harlem shake. My opinion it will be fun for now then somone will bring it back

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Kaleb. Do you think there are more fads today compared to previous generations because it is easier to communicate? Would the Harlem Shake be so popular if there was no Internet or cell phones?

      Quick Fix:
      – friends belonging to them – their friends (people told their friends)

  9. Kira says:

    A fad is any kind of behaviour that grows with a large population, that is followed with a large amount of inspiration for so time. Fads spread when you post some thing on the Internet, t.v. or perhaps mail long ago. the Harlem shake has be come so popular because some people find is some funny and its all so crazy and lots of people like that. The Harlem shake is important to the population because some people need those crazy and wild moments in their life. In twenty years I think know one will really remember this dance.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Kira, what do you think the people in the videos will think about their dancing in 5 years? 25 years? Imagine what the reaction will be when their friends, children, employers find the video…what impact will it have on their life?

      Quick Fix:

      – it is all so crazy = it’s
      – the Harlem Shake has become (not be come)

  10. Gabrielle says:

    A fad is a popular thing that spreads quickly with enthusiasm. I kind of thought of it like how the older kids are watched by the young ones and they follow along but the idea kind of gets old. For example the disco it was a very popular 60’s , 70’s and 80’s dance I don’t see much people doing it anymore. How popular things spread before the Internet well maybe people would see someone popular wearing or doing something no one has seen before then they wanna be popular so they do it and it just continues on. The Harlem Shake has become so popular because maybe the people who made the Harlem Shake had Facebook and they posted it on Facebook. Maybe then all of their friends watched the video then shared it with their friends and so on. It just went viral! People probably wanted to make one and it just kept spreading the same way on Youtube. I don’t think the Harlem Shake is more on the important side I think it’s just for fun. I think the Harlem Shake will only be this year then next year there will be a new dance. I think people will remember it for a while. People have remember the disco for 20+ years.

  11. Jillian says:

    The Harlem Shake is definitely a fad. A fad is an idea that gets passed from one person to another, while its popularity is gaining very quickly. Fads spread on the internet when something is made that people think is funny, and they show people (using Facebook, Youtube), who show more people(reposting), etc… In the days without internet it was probably spread through T.V. or talking and letters. The Harlem Shake was probably became so popular because people are looking to be cheered up in life, and so many people are on the internet right now. In my opinion, some people will remember this fad in a couple of decades, but not many. (But…. I can see a little old man Shace and/or Jacob going over to there grandchildren and showing them how to do the Harlem Shake!!)

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Jillian! Could someone’s version of the Harlem Shake be a problem in the future because of the permanent nature of Internet posts? What do you want your kids and grandkids to see when they search online about their parents?

  12. melissa says:

    A fad means an intensely shared enthusiasm for something. It spreads by getting views,likes, and subscriptions say your idea is on you-tube and its a funny video you can post links to the video over twitter, face-book, tumbler…….etc, and people off of these sites can view it and like it and subscribe it and view it. If there were no Internet fads would be spread by flash mobs, signs, T.V., …….. etc things like those can spread information and fads quickly. The Harlem shake is so popular because most people like to go free style and do moves. It is a great dance but its pretty much just an excuse to go dumb for 30 seconds while dancing. In my opinion the dance isn’t really important they are just for fun why would the Harlem shake be important it doesn’t give us knowledge and information like school. I think that if people download the Harlem shake onto there mp3’s or ipad’s or computer the song will be around for a long time because most people enjoy it so they want to spread it with others and I think that the Harlem shake is only going to last about a decade if people don’t encourage it then its just for now but if the do encourage it then it might last about a decade. Well in my opinion I think it would be cool if everyone started singing my parody to fergalicious the name is SMURFALICIOUS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! because its funny and random just like me.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your response Melissa. How do you think these people will react to their videos in the future? Can a 30 second video impact their futures?

      It is interesting to see the ‘smurf’ fad come back into conversation because of the movie. The Smurfs have been around for more than 30 years, yet no one really used the word when the cartoon stopped being on television.

      Quick Fix:
      – it is a funny video (it’s); it is funny and random (it’s)

  13. Issac says:

    In my opinion the Harlem shake will be popular for a fairly long time but after long periods of time I believe that it will lose its popularity and every one will be focused on something even more popular then the Harlem shake. So no I don’t think it will be a fad 😉

  14. Shaleyea says:

    A fad is a temporary or short lived notion. It can spread easily when the activity or product appeals to the viewer. I can only assume that before the Internet age, people would run to tell their friends and family of any exciting event. I honestly can’t figure out how the dance style has gotten so popular, and even the people from Harlem are shaking their heads at the craze. I believe the “Harlem Shake” was a creation due to boredom, and has no important connections to our community, nor do I think it will. I don’t think this dance sensation will last very long, either. In my opinion, we should follow the “Funky Chicken”. A dance my friends and I created for a remix of the Chicken Dance. It is my dream to preform the dance in front of many people, and I will do so sometime during my life.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You make a great point about the fad not connecting to our community – well said! Will the people who have posted their shake online live to regret their moves?

      Quick Fix:
      – there is no ‘typo’ check; so ‘preform’ does not get highlighted when you want to say ‘perform’

  15. CASSIE SMILES :) says:

    well Harlem shake is going to be a fad because who will remember the Harlem shake in like 10 years from now. A fad is a word to use for like it happens for a little while then it fads away for ever or for a long time.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Cassie. The permanent nature of the Internet means we will be able to look up these videos in ten years. Do you think this is a good or bad thing – explain?

  16. Jake says:

    I believe it is a fad because of the many different versions and people who are doing it. the fact that people are striving to do even more Harlem shake videos makes it a clear fad. And a good at that.

  17. megan says:

    A fad is any form of behaviour that develops among a large population of people how something spreads among person to person within a culture or a behaviour or style. With dancing such as the Harlem shake it would spread even faster because of its crazy dance moves and fascinating ability for people to watch for hours. The Harlem shake for me has no importance, It is just an excuse for people to go full on stupid for 30 seconds. with the Harlem shake i think that it will only last for at least one decade because of its weird dance moves. my original idea that i want to go world wide ts the saying,”I’m a freaking taco!!!!!!!.” i say that because i am weird like that. BA BAM!!!!!!!!!

  18. Rayne says:

    The Harlem Shake is definitely a fad. Fad is a craze or something that gets intense and is widely shared and short-lived. Fads are spread by sending it to people on cell phones or posting it on the Internet like Youtube, Facebook , or even Twitter, but before the cell phone and the Internet were invented fads were spread by people talking about the fad all of the time or even doing the fad with their actions but eventually it will die because of how many times people see it and hear about it. The Harlem Shake is so popular because it is a bunch of failed moves and maybe even because of the song and the costumes people sometimes put on for the video. Fads can be important if it is about academic stuff or cleaning, or they could just be for entertainment, and amusement. It might come back in a few decades because parents or uncles and aunties might talk about the Harlem Shake, but it is going to die soon.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Rayne. What cleaning fads have you heard of? What reaction will people have of their Harlem Shake moves in the future when their kids discover it?

  19. emily says:

    I don’t know the Harlem shake very well but I think that it is fad. exciting fun to see… and short lived .. I think. The Harlem shake is a nice dance. It’s to cheer people up when they’re down. Plus they could have a moment to laugh when one of the dancers mess up ..hehe. I do think that their actions will die later on in the years to come and that other people will come with new moves just like music. In the 1990’s they had love songs like what people would have at their weddings, and now the songs are more… disturbing , nasty , physical, perverted, and what ever sells more MONEY! to people.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks for your post Emily. Why do you think songs and dances are pushing the limits of what people consider appropriate/inappropriate? Is this something new, or has music and dance done this for generations? People have argued that Elvis’s music and dance moves were inappropriate back in his day, yet looking at Elvis today, his dancing and music are tame.

  20. Drew. R. Hegyi says:

    A fad is something that everybody enjoys to watch and join in on, wether it be a dance or some kind of toy. A fad is something that is only short lived but that might come back years later. One of those is Straw Berry Shortcake who was popular when my mom was a little girl. A fad spreads on the internet by somebody finding it on the internet first, and if they like it they press the share with friends button and share it with everybody they know. Before the internet is kind of hard to think about but I came up with some stuff. Before the internet people did not have lives so they had to write letters to interacte with eachother. So if there was a fad it would probably be on the television and everybody that could aford one would know about it and would brag about it to their class mates that they have this cool toy. The Harlem shake has become popular because it is a form of art that you can do and relaese stress and have fun at the same time. Fadslike the Harlem shake are mainly for fun but sometimes somebody could be affended by what you did. people will remember them in a few decades because parents would have told their children about it and maybe even shown them. One trend I would like to see sread across the planet is to take old clothes and take them to make blankets for the homeless or just to give them as they are to the homeless to wear. The reason I want this to happen is because i have met some really nice homeless men that could really use it.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You have a terrific idea for a trend Drew – think about how many clothes people have in their closets that never get used.

      Quick Fix:
      – whether (“whether it be a dance or some kind of toy…”
      – offended (not ‘affended’)

  21. kayla says:

    I think it is a fad because first it was the Dougy then it was the shuffle then it was Gangnam Style then the Harlem shake and soon theirs going to be another one that just lasts for a couple months then forgotten about.

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