What's Up With People Posting Broken Videos That Don't Load On X? New Twitter Engagement Bait Exploit Explained

What's Up With People Posting Broken Videos That Don't Load On X? New Twitter Engagement Bait Exploit Explained

Users on X have been reporting a bizarre trend: videos that are not loading properly and glitch out into a frozen green screen immediately after start have been popping up on the platform again and again. Moreover, Twitter has seemingly been recommending these broken videos to its users, leaving people wondering what is going on. Learn more about the weird trend and what engagement metrics have to do with it in our brief explainer.

What Are Broken Videos On X?

Broken videos, also referred to as glitched videos, refers to video uploads made by users on X that fail to load properly for the viewer due to technical issues. The videos that have been getting recommended share one common trait: after starting, they immediately glitch out into a frozen frame and do not load any further no matter what the user does.

Where Do Glitched Videos Come From?

The glitched out videos on Twitter are usually a result of a user trying to upload a clip normally, but the upload failing for an unknown reason. Among the videos that appear as a part of the current trend, the upload made by X user @yang_mady on April 7th, 2024, is the earliest. The video preview shows a young woman cooking barbecue at a market, but upon viewing the video ends abruptly as it fails to load.

More videos like that were uploaded by various users in the following months: for example, on June 5th, 2024, X user @Rockyy__420 uploaded a clip from the music video for the song "Once Upon a Time," with the upload, since removed, failing to load just like the market video.

Madhur Singh @ThePlacardGuy So sick of seeing this video on X Stop it guys 0:02 From Rocky Bhai 6:32 AM Jun 23, 2024 23M Views O

The market video, the "finger gun" video and other similar broken uploads were quickly found out by users striving to farm views on X.

As viewers try to reload such videos multiple times to watch them and fail repeatedly, this boosts their engagement metric dramatically, which means that the platform is more likely to recommend tweets containing these broken videos to users. In the recent weeks, this has been exploited by a number of users who included the broken uploads in their posts, often pairing them with totally unrelated messages, all in a bid to increase their reach on the platform.

Judging by the view metric โ€“ the market video has garnered over 33 million views so far, which appears to be an average amount for these videos โ€“ the strategy has been working. However, the frequency with which broken uploads have been appearing on people's timelines has been causing questions and annoyance.

For the full history of broken video engagement bait, be sure to check out GotFunnyPictures's encyclopedia entry for more information.

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