Truth or Fail

I recently discovered there is a channel on YouTube called “Truth or Fail.” The channel’s description is: “An online test of your brain power, Truth or Fail is YouTube’s first game show. Hosted by a variety of YouTube celebrities, Truth or Fail presents you with two supposed facts. All you have to do is click on the true one, or you fail.”

The Truth of Fail channel contains over twenty different videos you can watch, each of which is the beginning of a different game focusing on a specific category. The video will have a person stating two outlandish facts and then asking you which of the two facts is actually true. Each fact shows up as a link leading to another YouTube video. If you click the correct answer the link will direct you to another video. The person will then let you know you have answered correctly and provide you with two new facts.

If you answer incorrectly, the link will send you to a video also providing you with another set of facts, only after letting you know you have failed. This will continue until you complete five rounds. At the end of the video containing the final set of facts you will be given the option to grade how well you did on the quiz. The choices are 1/5, 2/5, 3/5, 4/5 and 5/5 and each of these choices links to another video. In the final video the person will respond based on how well, or how poorly, you did on the quiz. The game ends with links to the beginning of another game.

I had previously questioned whether or not YouTube videos, namely videos, belonged in the Electronic Literature canon. I still stand by my argument that the majority of videos, although they possess narrative qualities and are born digital, should not be guaranteed a place in the canon. Standard YouTube videos lack any sort of interactive qualities besides the basic actions of clicking the play button and watching the video. To quote my previous post, “If watching a video were enough than every video would fall into the canon and I don’t believe that is so.”

The Truth or Fail videos differ from the standard YouTube video in that they require user interaction in order to get the full experience of the game. The format of the videos reminded me of the Choose-Your-Adventure games because you could get different results based on the answer you chose. The Choose-Your-Adventure games only worked so long as you continued choosing your own adventure in order to further your progress in the game. Similarly, these game show videos only work if you choose an answer in order to proceed. You could easily just watch one video and not chose any answer, but then the game would just end.

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