Last week, a video surfaced online in which a McDonald’s worker taunted a homeless man with a cheeseburger, waving it in his face and asking him if he wanted it.
Even though the man is visibly starving, damp and cold, the McDonald’s employee threw the cheeseburger at the floor besides the man’s feet before walking away and laughing with the man behind the camera.
His reason for doing it? A prank.
The homeless man leaps to the floor to pick up the burger as a woman in the distance claims ‘that’s horrible, that’s not funny’ – however, the question that has plagued me since I first saw the video is why do pranks seem to now make it acceptable for people to be utter cunts.
I’m sure we’ve all seen it countless times.
With the rise of ‘in the hood’ pranks especially – people just love doing incredibly stupid things – and a lot of the time, incredibly wrongful things – by using the word ‘prank’ as a get out clause.
One such example can be found in the video below where a regular guy goes ‘into the hood’ yelling ‘there’s a nickle’, clearly intending for nickle to be misheard as ‘n*****’ – which it is.
The prank seems to be taken in good humour but that still doesn’t explain why by using the word ‘prank’ you can be an absolute wanker and get away with it.
Another example can be found in the video below as a man goes ‘into the hood’ and proceeds to get up in people’s faces while trying to take their Beats.
It doesn’t end well for the ‘prankster’ – but what on earth did he expect?
Just a few days back another prankster, Vitalii Sediuk, manhandled model, Gigi Hadid, at Milan Fashion Week.
Why? I don’t know…
He bizarrely claimed it was ‘in protest against the use of celebrity models’ – which is definitely not an excuse for assaulting a woman in the street and nor will it ever be.
Oh, and who could forget that eternal fuck-bucket Sam Pepper when he thought it’d make a good prank to go around sexually harassing people.
Yes, this actually happened.
One final classic example is that perpetual prick Jack Jones whose portfolio of cringe – which includes classics such as ‘You Wanna See My Balls Prank’ and ‘Stealing People’s Hats Prank’ – is pretty extensive.
As can be seen below:
Ironically, the only time I’ve ever really laughed at a Jack Jones video was when he got a taste of his own medicine and got slapped in the face with a greasy slice of pizza.
And how did he respond when he was told ‘it was just a prank bro’? He rang the police…
Anyway, the examples of pranksters being dicks is endless – so let’s cut to the chase and try to find out why being a prankster allows you to be an utter cunt.
I guess all it comes down to is clicks and YouTube views.
More clicks equals more money and with the rise of YouTube pranks over the past ten years, people want more and more extreme things to satisfy their shock factor.
I guess it’s somewhat similar to why we like watching horror films. Back in the early 20’s when the horror genre became a port of call for cinema goers, films such as Nosferatu and The Phantom Carriage literally made people vomit and/or faint out of pure fear.
Nowadays we wouldn’t bat an eyelid at scenes which caused so much uproar and fear in the public at that time. Why? Because we’ve become utterly desensitised by what we’ve seen in the years that have followed – and the same goes for pranks.
Ten years ago I would have laughed for hours on end at countless videos of people being pranked by their friends on ‘the scary maze game’ but now I’d merely crack a smirk because I’ve simply become too used to it – and that is why pranksters have become such cunts.
They do cuntish things because the mass audience their channels appeal to are constantly seeking something more extreme, more ruthless, and more risky – which typically involves them being cunts.
Alternatively, with the likes of Sam Pepper’s volley of outrageous ‘pranks’, people like to watch, not necessarily because they like him or his videos, but to see what they’re all about and to see if they’re as shocking as everybody says – no matter whether they approve or not.
And because outrage is what a lot of people want, people will click, which means money for the pranksters while also meaning they’ll have to outdo themselves later on. It’s a circle of shit – but, boy, does it work.
The poster boy for YouTube pranks, Vitaly Zdorovetskiy, is worth $2 million. Jack Vale is worth over $1 million. Hell, Roman Atwood makes $6,000 every day.
The likes of Jack Jones, Sam Pepper, and many many more were all, you guessed it, making a shed-load of money due to their reputations as risque pranksters.
That is why they can be cunts, simply because it makes money and they’ll continue to do idiotic and horrific things for as long as people will watch it.
It doesn’t make it any more acceptable but that’s the reason why – and it probably won’t change any time soon.
Oh and the guy with the cheeseburger? He was just a prick desperate for fame.
Joseph Loftus is a Gold Standard NCTJ journalist with four years experience working for international and regional press.
As well as working for UNILAD and LADbible, Joseph has worked as Liverpool Correspondent for Unsigned & Independent Magazine, as well as stints with the Liverpool Echo and Warrington Guardian.