By Sue Wambolt, Contributing Writer
Northborough/Southborough – For Algonquin Regional High School (ARHS) seniors Nic Zanghi, Giles Ober and Sam Huddart, the Algonquin “Lip Dub” YouTube sensation, which they ?created to promote school spirit and showcase the camaraderie of the student body at “The Gonk,” has taken on a life of its own. The video, which featured 900-plus students lip syncing and performing the song “Good Time” by Carly Rae Jepson and Owl City, generated more than 23,000 hits before it was removed from YouTube due to a copyright infringement just 72 hours after it debuted.
“Unfortunately, we found out about the removal of the video when a few fans [of the video] tweeted us on our Twitter account saying that it was no longer working on mobile devices. By the time we went to check it out, it had been taken down completely,” Ober said. “The video had been disabled on mobile devices before [pre-public release] but we appealed and won based on our assertion that the video was nonprofit and for educational purposes.”
According to Ober, the outcry of support for Algonquin Lip Dub spawned the hashtag #freelipdub – joining the hashtag #itsalwaysagoodtime – and filling up both the Algonquin Lip Dub twitter feed and Algonquin Lip Dub Facebook wall with words of encouragement and support.
The boys have sent a second letter appealing Universal Music Group's decision not to issue them a license, but have yet to hear back.
“Having the video taken down hasn’t really affected our marketing strategies,” Huddart said. “It was great to see not only such a positive response to the video, but also the outpouring of emotion when it was taken down. It really showed us that this video is something that is near and dear to the people of our community, and we’re really doing all we can do to get it back on YouTube as soon as possible.”
Despite the removal of “The Algonquin Lip Dub” from YouTube, Zanghi, Ober and Huddart presented the video at the state Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) conference in Boston March 16. It was entered under the category of “public relations.”
“We’re proud to announce we placed third in our category,” Ober said. “Fortunately, we have qualified for the International Career Development Conference (IDCD) competition, which will take place in Anaheim, California, from Tuesday, April 23, through Sunday, April 28. We’re extremely excited about this.”
The boys are hoping that “The Algonquin Lip Dub” will be reinstated on YouTube as is, with view counts intact.
“We would be really happy to have the video up without infringing on any copyright laws,” Huddart said. “At the moment, we are in the process of?consulting with an attorney and organizing a response to Universal Music Group that outlines our stance and why we believe the video should be reposted.”
For now, Zanghi, Ober and Huddart are enjoying their success at DECA and looking forward to presenting at IDCD. For the trio, it is surely a “good time.”