Sunday, April 10, 2011

Weekend Diversion: Ultimate ‘Rick Roll’

Early last year, Jefferson Smith, a Democratic member of the Oregon House, came up with what he and his co-conspirator wife thought would be the best political prank ever: Get the House into the ultimate “Rick Roll”.

To pull it off, the legislators—Democrats and Republicans alike—had to deliver a lyric of the song in a speech, and they had to be spread out so as not to tip off the House Clerk, or anyone else watching, as to what they were up to. From there, it was simply a matter of taking the videotaped speeches—and they all are as a matter of public record in Oregon—and cut them to just the lyrics, then splice them together.

Simple? It took 14 months. First, they had to file requests to get the footage, then they had to go through hours of video to find the lyrics. The final result was posted to You Tube—appropriately enough—on April 1 of this year.

The video is completely real, Smith insisted: "It was real, and it was really awesome. Democracy is a glorious thing."

And so it is. And Jefferson Smith of Oregon is—for now—the holder of the title for the ultimate “Rick Roll”.