Because I have a heart of stone, I actually find the making-of video (above) more captivating than the “original” YouTube fakery. From the NYTimes:
… On Sept. 19 a 30-second video appeared on YouTube, depicting a baby goat that had become stuck in the pond of a petting zoo and that was heroically rescued with a helpful nudge from a pig that swam out to it.
Within hours the video had been posted around the Web; it had been shared with the Twitter followers of Time magazine and Ellen DeGeneres; and it had been broadcast on NBC’s “Today” show and its “Nightly News” program, ABC’s “Good Morning America” and Fox News, where the “Fox & Friends” co-host Brian Kilmeade said of it, “You couldn’t do this at Warner Brothers as a cartoon and make it seem more realistic.”
But the video was thoroughly staged. It was created for a new Comedy Central series, “Nathan for You,” with the help of some 20 crew members, including animal trainers, scuba divers and humane officers, and required the fabrication of a plastic track to guide the pig to the goat (which was never in jeopardy)…
“It really is embarrassing for the journalists who stumbled upon this and decided to promote it or share it with their audience,” said Kelly McBride, the senior faculty for ethics, reporting and writing at the Poynter Institute. “It’s almost a form of malpractice.”
But to the creators of the video — which has since been viewed more than seven million times — the news reports are the unexpected if felicitous results of a social experiment in which they say they were not aspiring to this level of deceit.
“If we were trying to pull an elaborate hoax on the news, I think we could have pushed further,” said Nathan Fielder, the star of “Nathan for You.” “But we weren’t. We found it interesting that people were sharing it without us saying anything.” …