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One Author’s Note and Bonus Activity

Updated: May 6

Many years ago, I wrote a silly short story about a serial killer who didn’t go around murdering people in person, instead he stole their time by creating cat videos for them to watch. I love a good cat video, but I haven’t been able to shake the horror of the concept either. 

The internet is a wonderous rabbit hole. It is central to the growth and future of our children, but it also deserves a sidelong look sometimes, particularly from them. Teagan reflects on this in the poem Paying Attention 4.

—Michael Stewart, 2024

One final activity for your students:

Have the students search for the most viewed YouTube video. (Apologies for the ear worm).

  • How many views does it have? 

  • How long is the video? 

  • How many years does this imply in terms of total viewing time? 

  • What do the students think about this? Are these millennia well spent? (There are arguments on both sides!)

  • What does this mean for the decisions they wish to make as active participants on the internet? 


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