What does it take to unify more than 5.5 million people online? One watermelon and a whole lot of rubber bands. The Buzzfeed Video Facebook page went live on Friday with a streaming feed showing two jumpsuit-wearing staffers wrapping one rubber band at a time around the middle of a watermelon until the beleaguered fruit finally succumbed to the pressure.
You can relive the entire 45-minute epic process, one rubber band at a time, or you can fast-forward to the end where the drama really ramps up. The watermelon is clearly straining as the melon tormenters close in on 700 rubber bands. Excitement over the seedy goings-on crossed over to social-media sites, causing the hashtag #watermelon to trend on Twitter. Spoiler alert: The climax is a beautiful, edible mess.
Facebook is really pushing its Facebook Live video-streaming feature. Buzzfeed describes itself as a member of a "rush of publishers" that have "barreled in to experiment and build audiences." Buzzfeed later confirmed it's a paid media partner. The viral success of the Gallagher-level watermelon explosion will likely encourage more Facebook Live stunts in the future. Maybe someone will take on the challenge of rubber-banding one of those hatchback-size pumpkins. I'd watch.