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The Wadsworth Constant is an axiom which states that the first 30% of any video can be skipped because it contains no worthwhile or interesting information.
For EVERY youtube video, I always open the video and then immediately punch the slider bar to about 30 percent. For example, in this video, it should have just started at :40. Everything before :40 was a waste. This holds true for nearly every video in the universe.
On October 1st, 2011, Redditor grim_fandango posted an image on the r/pics subreddit titled “And so ends 20 years of frustration,” which contained instructions on how to fold a bed sheet. In the comments, Redditor KillerRefreshRate asked “How the hell do you get from 3 to 4?”, to which Redditor octal9 responded with a link to an instructional YouTube video. Redditor Wadsworth commented on the video link with the following message:
Redditor Redebo replied to Wadsworth saying, “perhaps this should be known as the Wadsworth Constant.”
The same day, the blog The Daily Dot posted an article about the axiom and numerous definition entries for the term were submitted to Urban Dictionary. Redditor ReachingHorizons posted a follow-up thread called “And so the Wadsworth Constant was born,” which received over 19,005 up votes and 15,768 down votes before archival.
On October 4th, YouTuber monadamm uploaded an explanatory video titled “What is the wadsworth constant?” which also demonstrated as an example of the axiom with the definition beginning at 0:10:
Redditor and YouTube employee newtuber revealed a new URL parameter “&wadsworth=1” which can be added on to the end of a YouTube video URL to load the video at 30%.
Redditor buggg posted a Python script that applies the Wadsworth Constant on a command line.
if len(sys.argv) != 0: phrase = ’ ’.join(original[1:])
else: phrase = original
output = phrase[int(len(phrase)-len(phrase)*.70):]
if name == ‘main’:
On October 13th, 2011, the tech blog Lifehacker published an article about a Wadsworth Constant bookmarklet.
Redditor ReachingHorizons posted a link to a java application which calculates the 30% mark of input text.
Redditor WadsworthIt posted a link to the website “Wadsworth It!” which processes any image or video URL and crops the first 30% of the media.
On October 14th, Redditor thesoundandthefury published a video titled “Defying the Wadsworth Constant,” which was intended to demonstrate that not all videos can be skipped in the beginning.
Dozens of other YouTube videos have been since posted onto Reddit’s “The Wadsworth Constant” subreddit section either in demonstration of or defiance against the axiom.
Search queries for “Wadsworth Constant” spiked on October 3rd, 2011, two days after the original post.
The Daily Dot – How the Wadsworth Constant will give you 50 percent more time