Web Rant Against Vertical Videos Goes Viral

Melissa Knowles
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You may be guilty of a virtual smartphone crime and not even know it. Or at the very least, you're going against proper video-making etiquette. If you're shooting with your phone upright in "portrait mode," a comedic PSA wants you to put a stop to what you're doing and start going horizontal, or using "landscape mode."

"Vertical Video Syndrome," the brainchild of the comedy group "Glove and Boots," has gone viral as it pokes fun at these videos for not being easy on the eyes, the neck, or even the wallet. The short feature, which uses "Sesame Street"-like puppets, has struck a chord with viewers annoyed with the egregious breaking of video etiquette. The puppets explain the slippery slope that acceptance of vertical videos could lead to such as tall and skinny movie theaters, YouTube videos being shown four at a time, side by side, to save on bandwidth, or even famed filmmaker George Lucas releasing the a skinny version of "Star Wars."

The puppets aim to cure people of their VVS and help them create videos that are worth watching. After all, our eyes are horizontal, and while a photo can be turned on its side, a television and a computer are not meant to be viewed vertically. So cooperate, and don't anger the puppets. Stop committing the virtual smartphone crime

Many commenters agreed, with one person writing, "So funny and true." Another wrote, "If I could start you a slow clap over the Internet, I would."


A high school teacher raised some eyebrows in a recent graduation speech for bucking tradition by not praising the accomplished seniors. Instead, English teacher David McCullough Jr. told Wellesley High School graduates they are not special.

Rather than laud the Massachusetts seniors for their achievements, McCullough, son of Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough Sr., declared, "You've been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble-wrapped. . . . But do not get the idea you're anything special. Because you're not."

McCullough said his comments were not made to belittle students, but instead to urge the class of 2012 not to get caught up in a culture more obsessed with trophies and accolades than genuine achievement. He advised students to "climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air, and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you."

Graduates seemed to embrace McCullough's message, and several students told a local newspaper reporter they "loved" the speech. In the end, McCullough counseled the students to follow their passions and not just take a job because of the amount of money they can make from it. Ultimately, he encouraged them all to lead extraordinary lives.