The original 2007 video, Charlie Bit My Finger, a carrier of the viral internet fascination, sold as a non-fungible token for $ 760,999, and the family who created it will be removing the original from YouTube for good.
The original video, with almost 900 million views, shows Charlie Davies-Carr, a child in England, who bites his older brother Harry Davies-Carr’s finger and then laughs after Harry yells “OWWWW”.
The owner can also create their own parody of the video starring Charlie and Harry Davies-Carr.
Many duplicates of the video remain online, including one that appears to have been renamed by the family themselves in anticipation of the auction. However, the auction enabled the bidders to “own the soon-to-be-deleted YouTube phenomenon” and to be “the sole owner of this lovable piece of Internet history”.
The market for property rights to digital art, ephemera, and media, known as NFTs, continues to grow, drawing attention to widely viewed videos and memes that many people have long forgotten.
NFT buyers typically do not acquire copyrights, trademarks, or sole ownership of what they buy. They are mostly bought with the idea that their copy is authentic.
“Disaster Girl,” a meme from a 2005 photo of Zoë Roth looking at a burning house in her neighborhood, sold for $ 500,000 in an NFT auction last month. Nyan Cat, an animated flying cat with a pop-tart torso that leaves a rainbow trail, sold for around $ 580,000 in February. Jack Dorsey’s first tweet sold for more than $ 2.9 million as an NFT. A clip of LeBron James blocking a shot in a Lakers basketball game cost $ 100,000 in January. and an artist sold an NFT of a collage of digital images for $ 69.3 million, including for headline auctions.
During an NFT sale, computers are connected to a cryptocurrency network. They record the transaction in a shared ledger and store it on a blockchain, sealing it as part of a permanent public record, and acting as a type of certificate of authenticity that cannot be changed or deleted.
There were 11 active bidders in the war for the NFT, mostly driven between two bidders named 3fmusic and mememaster who were ultimately outbid by 3fmusic $ 45,444. The bid was closed on Sunday.
The effect of the video “Charlie Bit My Finger” could still be felt a few years after its first release. It was written into a Gerber commercial and a “30 Rock” episode and has been the subject of countless parody videos. But it’s still known for sparking a genre of contagious viral videos.
Howard Davies-Carr, the father of Charlie and Harry, told the New York Times in 2012 that although he didn’t consider them celebrities, his sons had nonetheless become a brand. The family was recognized in random places, such as the London Underground.
In a 2017 interview with the brothers on The Morning, a UK talk show, Howard Davies-Carr said he filmed the brothers “just doing normal things” growing up and that Charlie had a finger on his brother after a busy day watching TV bitten the garden.
“The video was funny, so I wanted to share it with the boys’ godfather,” said Howard Davies-Carr, adding that their godfather lived in America and that the video was originally private, but people, including his parents, were concerned about it had asked to watch it as it was difficult to share so he made the video public.
A few months later, when the video had at least 10,000 views, Howard Davies-Carr said he almost deleted it. The profits from the video and other opportunities allowed the family to send Charlie, Harry, and their two other brothers to private school, said Shelley Davies-Carr, the boys’ mother.
The humble beginning viral video that Charlie and Harry set out to sell helped Shelley Davies-Carr stop her full-time employment when their fourth child was born.
“I just watched TV and decided to bite him,” said Charlie Davies-Carr in an interview. “He put his finger in my mouth so I just bit.” Harry Davies-Carr couldn’t remember the pain from that bite.