Baby Shark Dance Baby Shark Dance

“Baby Shark Dance,” the inane viral earworm, has become the first video on Youtube to reach ten billion views. Back to back, that makes for 43,156 years of continuous streaming.

The video, produced by Korean entertainment company Pinkfong, has been the most viewed on the site since November 2020, when it overtook Luis Fonsi’s “Despacito.” That music video remains in second place, with 7.7 billion views.

The “Baby Shark” song features in many viral kids’ videos, of which “Baby Shark Dance” is the most popular. In it, child actors sing and dance to the tune in front of a backdrop of animated sharks and other marine life.

Released in June 2016, the video went viral the following year. It has since spawned films, a Nickelodeon series, a stage musical, interactive games, and merchandise aplenty. This is the only franchise we know of that has inspired both non-fungible tokens and fishing tackle.

Pinkfong was originally an arm of kids’ entertainment brand Smartstudy, which changed its name to The Pinkfong Company this week. “Founded as a startup offering children’s educational services, The Pinkfong Company has evolved into the home of iconic IPs including its flagship franchise Baby Shark,” said a press release.

But while “Baby Shark Dance” and other Pinkfong content belongs to the company, the underlying song comes from folk tradition — it is thought to be a summer-camp song — and appears to be in the public domain. Other kids’ Youtube channels, such as Cocomelon, have jumped on the bandwagon with their own “Baby Shark” videos.

Kids’ animation is a major force on Youtube, accounting for six of the ten most-viewed videos on the site. The most popular animation channels are overwhelmingly aimed at children.

Discover what animation has made it big on Youtube

Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit is Associate Editor of Cartoon Brew.

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