There are a lot of bad social experiments on YouTube. Many of them aren’t actually social experiments even, they’re just guys trying to get laid. And many of the rest are faked — either because the actual results didn’t align with the filmmaker’s hypothesis (e.g. the police aren’t as violent and/or racist as they hoped, homeless people aren’t nearly so benevolent), or because they’re too lazy to put in the legwork testing an actual social experiment.
But if you dig through the miles of bogus sociological field studies on YouTube, you can find a few great ones: social experiments that not only pass the smell test for being real, but ones that either teach you something about yourself or mankind. Great social experiments don’t always yield the results we want, but they do give us results we need to see.
Here are six of the best social experiments YouTube has to offer:
6. The Suicide Experiment
As Roman Atwood and Fouseytube state in the comments: We didn’t start filming this video hoping to capture people NOT willing to help us. We filmed it to show the better side of people. They definitely achieve it.
5. Tipping Fast Food Workers $100
Sometimes it’s nice to see nice things happen to random humans.
4. Find Your True Friends
Yeah, it ends up being a beer commercial, but it’s a hell of a beer commercial!
3. Real You vs. Online You
I think all of us have that part of our personality that we think is too awkward to share with the rest of the world, for fear we might be judged negatively. This video does a wonderful job of making us realize, so what?
2. What Would You Do If You Walked In On A Murder?
This is just a fascinating way to answer a question we pretty much never get asked. Of course, considering it is so rare, some might wonder if this video is just exploitation. Or if it will make us think future murders we observe are actually just YouTube experiments. At the end of the day, it’s still a really good, interesting social experiment.
1. Stranger Talks To Kids
This is another social experiment you hope you are never tasked with finding out the answer for yourself. Hopefully, it makes you realize that no matter how many times you tell them, kids can’t be held accountable for big life decisions. Too scary.