Prior to the rise of modern Internet culture, hearing that something (or someone) was “going viral” was generally a cause for alarm. Today, however, there are few things that create more joy in the heart of a content creator than to discover that their work—whether it’s a painfully funny video, a blog post, or even a picture of the family cat—has gone viral.
Predicting exactly how and when content will go viral remains an inexact and often frustrating game of chance. For every @SochiProblems, there are thousands of would-be Twitter phenomena that die quiet deaths, unnoticed. For content creators who want to share their work with the world (while enhancing their own online success), it can seem like a kind of elusive magic.