Aurora Magazine

Promoting excellence in advertising

The Top 5 Viral Moments of 2017

Published in Nov-Dec 2017

From Aurora's 'Top 5ives – 10 Pros in Top 5 Mode' Series.

1. #MeToo

Who could have imagined that two simple words ‘Me’ and ‘Too’ on social media would bring down global leaders, corporations worth billions of dollars, and titans who thought they were immortal – and all within a few months. As Weinstein stumbled, the whole world felt the tremor... no one was spared from #MeToo. It might not just be the viral campaign of 2017, it might be the one of the decade as it is rapidly on its way to changing the social fabric of the global corporate culture.

2. #MeToo Chinoy

I will not venture into Chinoy’s motivation for her social media update when her sister’s doctor sent her a friend request on Facebook. On one hand, the doctor should not have done it; it is just unprofessional and creepy. On the other hand, a Facebook request and a few simple comments on your posts do not make for sexual harassment. Chinoy trivialised a greater struggle by women against rape and sexual harassment, although that might not have been her intention.

3. Coke Studio

The year 2017 saw not one but two of Coke’s content initiatives crossing the coveted ‘100-million-plus views’ mark on YouTube. Afreen Afreen, the tribute by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Momina Mustehsan to the late Nusrat Fateh Ali, and Atif Aslam’s Tajdar-e-Haram, have crossed 102 million views as of 13 November.

4. The Mahira Khan controversy

A popular film star takes a smoke break from a shoot, and Pakistan erupts. The same people who will pay an absurd amount to watch films, item numbers and heroines smoking while wearing backless dresses furiously posted when they saw Mahira doing it in her personal time.

5. The Khaadi saga

This brand’s virality stands out because within six months of sinking to the lowest depths of infamy, it rose to the strongest positive social media response. In July, social media erupted against Khaadi when someone alleged that they underpaid their labour force and calls for a boycott emerged. Six months later, the brand put up a post offering a 40% discount for the opening of their store at Lucky One Mall and women all over Karachi went mad. My entire social feed was flooded with pictures of women swarming into the mall. Go figure.

Syed Amir Haleem is CEO, KueBall Digital.