Part of a series on Marriage Proposal Reaction Videos. [View Related Entries]

Updated Apr 15, 2014 at 02:04AM EDT by Brad.

Added Apr 14, 2014 at 12:46PM EDT by Molly Horan.

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A Promposal refers to a surprise event that is organized by a student and presented to his/her romantic interest as an invitation to a prom dance. Similar to the phenomenon of marriage proposal videos on YouTube, these elaborately staged events are documented in photographs or videos and shared online, most notably on Instagram.


On June 28th, 2012, Instagram user mandy1657[8] posted a photo of her boyfriend’s promposal in which his friends spell out the question “will you go to prom with me?” using their bodies with the hashtag #promposal, a portmanteau word derived from “prom” and “proposal.”


The first definition for promposal on Urban Dictionary[1] was submitted on January 22nd, 2006, by user TexanJackass who defined it as:

“a proposal from one person asking another person to the prom; is the combination of the words ‘prom’ and ‘proposal.’”

Throughout the late 2000s promposal reaction videos, in the style of marriage proposal reaction videos, spread on YouTube and other video sharing sites. One of the oldest was uploaded to EbaumsWorld[2] on July 3rd, 2006, which featured a teenage girl covering Hellogoodbye’s “Jesse Buy Nothing… Go To Prom Anyways!” As of April 2014, the video has gained over 250,000 views.

On April 5th, 2013, YouTube McKane Andrus[3] uploaded a video which represented a backlash against elaborate promposals titled “The Senn Way of Asking Someone to Prom,” which featured a teenage boy describing promposals as over the top and describing his own video as satire, before twerking on a girl wearing gold short-shorts with “prom” written on the butt. As of April 2014, the video has gained over 7.7 million views.


In 2013, there were over 100 photos uploaded to Instagram tagged #promposals[9] including promposals written in ketchup, on baseballs, and on pizza boxes. The first entry of 2014 was submitted on January 10th, 2014, by user madi_paiige15[10], who posted a photo of a promposal based on Disney’s Up.

On March 19th, 2014, the official Instagram blog[7] highlighted #promposals in a post, which gained over 7,000 notes by April 2014. Several websites published roundups of the most impressive and extravagant promposals in March of 2014, including Mashable[5] and Buzzfeed.[6] As of April 2014, there are over 39,000 Instagram photos tagged #promposal.[4]

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