Stop Making Unboxing Videos -- They Are Pointless, Stupid, And Annoying
by, May 13th, 2011 at 12:55 PM
The internet, especially YouTube, is filled with annoying videos known as unboxing videos. Unboxing is exactly what it sounds like, unwrapping or opening a product's packaging and removing the product. The videos are even more boring than you would think. It is a form of extreme geek porn, and it needs to stop.
Before I purchase a consumer electronics product, I generally like to do a fair amount of research first. As I do so, nothing is more frustrating than finding nothing but stupid unboxing videos that do nothing to help me learn more about the product. What is gained by watching someone unpack a box while talking about how the contents are wrapped? Nothing. It really makes me wonder what the people are thinking when they film unboxing videos. There are websites dedicated to distributing unboxing videos and I don't understand why they continue to exist. Who watches them?
Just do a quick search on YouTube for "unboxing" and you will see some really stupid and pointless videos. Like this video of an iPad unboxing, or this horrible iPad unboxing video, or this unboxing of the 27" Apple LED Display.
It isn't just the pointlessness of the videos that irritate me. Here is a list of reasons why unboxing videos suck and why they need to stop:
You may want to ask me why I don't simply avoid watching unboxing videos. That's a good question, and the answer is that I don't seek out unboxing videos, but many unboxing videos are disguised as being video reviews. It is my opinion that such tactics are evil. An unboxing video is not a review and should not be described as such. The other problem is that there are more unboxing videos of a product than there are actual video reviews of the product. This makes it difficult to search for real reviews on the internet and on YouTube. It is tedious and time consuming to sift through all the unboxing crap to find an actual review.
- Long title cards:
A long-lasting title card explaining what is being unpacked is a waste of time. The person who will watch the video will already know what is being unpacked since it will likely say on the webpage on which the video resides.
- Blurry closeups:
For some reason, the people who have way too much time on their hands and film unboxing videos feel it is necessary to zoom in on the box to show the viewer the pretty pictures and the specs typed on the box. These people don't know how to film closeup shots without blurring the image. They also don't know how to edit videos and remove the uselessly burry portions.
- No one cares about how it is packed:
When I research a product, I don't care if the product is packed with styrofoam, peanuts, plastic wrap, bubble wrap, air bags, twistie-ties, rubber-bands, staples, or string. No one makes their final decision on what to buy based on how something is packed. It is a waste of time to offer commentary on the packing method.
- Too long:
What makes an annoying unboxing video even more annoying is a lengthy unboxing video. Learn to edit gaps in which nothing occurs.
- Grunge music:
Crappy distorted music in the background doesn't help make the uninteresting video any les uninteresting, it only annoys.
- The knife:
No one cares what is used to cut open the box. Don't talk about it.
- What about the product:
After wasting time watching someone I don't know unpack a product, all they do is hold up the product and say, "And here is the Sorny XK11-BRV69-D!" and the video ends. People researching a product want to know more about the product, like something relevant the manufacturer's website may fail to mention. We want to know others' thoughts and experiences using the product, if it is worth the money, if it fulfills needs, if it does what is advertised.
I thought about making a parody video of the typical unboxing video, but I found one that already does a pretty good job:
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