The Art of Darkness

Creepy YouTube Mystery

August 8th, 2013 by Cobwebs

Pronunciation Book

Pronunciation Book is a strange and little-viewed YouTube channel which provides guidance on pronouncing words and phrases in American English. The channel has been running since April of 2010, and the words it chooses to highlight tend to be rather odd: “Zosia Mamet,” “one million dollar commercial,” “Yggdrasil,” “goodbye lyrics,” and “tsundere” amongst them.

It also occasionally features how-to guides with unusual example phrases: How to State an Unpleasant Fact in English teaches you how to pronounce, “I have no choice but to complete the mission.” How to Bargain in English has, “I’ll tell you where it is if you promise to leave this city.”

On July 9, the words suddenly stopped and a countdown took its place. A new video is posted daily, counting down from 77, which promises that “something is going to happen.” Each message is followed by a series of clicks which were originally thought to be Morse code. However, some users exploring the mystery have used spectography to convert the audio files into visual data, revealing an image file that seems to be the lower part of a man pointing toward the camera.

Video Image

CNet has more on the puzzle, and there’s a public Google Doc with a detailed analysis. The best guess is that this is the start of an alternate reality game by a company called Synydyne; if so, they have certainly committed to the bit: A three-year lead time is pretty impressive (CNet notes that phrases in some previous videos may have hinted at what was to come; How to Argue in English uses “I’m trying to tell you something, but you’re just not listening” as an example).

At its present rate, the countdown will end on September 24. I’ll be curious to see what comes next.

(via BoingBoing)

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