Video Sets Viral Record
Kony 2012, a half-hour video about the fugitive Ugandan rebel leader Joseph Kony has set a record as the fastest-growing viral sensation in web history, viewed 80 million times between Monday and Friday, according to Visible Measures Corp. The previous record was set by the Susan Boyle video "I Dreamed a Dream" from Britain's Got Talent , which took six days to reach 70 million views in 2009. Reuters reported today (Monday) that Harvey Weinstein has contacted the film's director/narrator, Jason Russell, to acquire the film. In an interview with the wire service, Russell agreed with critics of the film who claim it oversimplifies the political situation in Uganda. Russell, a member of the San Diego-based nonprofit group Invisible Children, said that Kony 2012 represents "just the gateway into the conversation. And we made it quick and oversimplified on purpose." Ben Keesey, the group's CEO, told CNN Sunday that it plans to address specific criticisms of the film in a new10-minute video. The principal criticism is that the film and its makers support the Ugandan army's effort to hunt down Kony. But a new blog called Visible Children claims that the army is "riddled with accusations of rape and looting." Another criticism Kony is no longer in Uganda -- and, in fact, no one is quite sure where he is.