Anyone who’s ever been on YouTube knows how powerful it is (if you have never been on YouTube there is a good chance you might be an alien). It sucks you in, and if you aren’t careful, it WILL waste several hours of your life without you even realizing it. How does this happen?
The answer to that is simple: the ‘related videos’ or ‘suggestions’ feature of YouTube. You know, that little area to the right of a YouTube video that suggests what video to watch next instead of getting back to work or doing something productive with your life? Yeah, that feature. Still not sure what I’m talking about? Here’s a screen shot of 10 arrows pointing to it: This feature has ruined my life on several occasions.
It starts with one of your friends, coworkers, or family members sending you a link to a video they think is awesome. You watch the video and your life is still fine… and then it happens. One of the related videos on the right catches your attention, so you click on it and watch it. Next, one of the related videos on the right catches your attention, so you click on it and watch it. This process repeats itself over and over again and before you know it 3 weeks have passed and this is your new reality: