Sometimes human beings are strange. Like when tragedy hits, such as 9/11, and despite the sadness and shock and grief... they can't help but seek out video of the event. That happened yesterday, when the Indy Racing League saw a spectacular crash claim the life of one of their most promising drivers, as 33-year-old and current Indy 500 champion Dan Weldon died from his injuries. 

Dan Weldon IndyCar Series Deadly Crash

It's tragic, heartbreaking, and hard to believe. And maybe that's why there's been such a surge in activity on videos of the incident. There are countless versions of the crash on YouTube--though most are of one of two different angles the race coverage team showed on ABC's broadcast--and a great many of them are rapidly adding up the views on their way to viral status.

And you know what? I think that's okay. I mean... I'm not encouraging you to go seek out videos of tragic events. But I don't think the desire to see footage of a newsworthy tragedy makes the viewer a bad person. To go back to the 9/11 analogy, I know people who turned the TV off around lunch time that day because they couldn't bear to watch any more. And yet, I also know people who went to the other extreme, and couldn't peel themselves away from the 24/7 coverage for several days. Neither group of people is wrong... they just process tragedy differently.

And I don't think viewers of the Indy crash videos are sick or wrong. I don't think they're looking for the video and watching it because they enjoy seeing people suffer... that's preposterous. Instead, sometimes people can't believe a thing has happened if they're not able to see it themselves.

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Here are videos representing the two views of the crash, one is from the live broadcast and the other is slow-motion overhead replay footage. Again, the crash (and the footage) is pretty intense and frightening:

[Video removed from YouTube]

Online Video Is This Generation's News Source

It's further proof that online video is the new news channel. It's timely (often immediate), easy to access and share, and offers the most possible variety of coverage of world events. Sure, millions of viewers saw the crash or learned about it on their local evening news... but millions more found out about it on Facebook or Twitter, and saw the crash on YouTube long before the news broadcast began.

  • juhe85eri

    thanks for info

  • Linda Malnati

    it's so sad to see so many Beautiful Lives vanish but Dan died doing what he Loved best. Prayer's to his Family, and RIP Dan. You will be missed but never forgotten.

  • Kris Sandusky Bowman

    Omg prayers to everyone and there families.

  • Trey Dick

    RIP Mr.Weldon.. My prayers are with his family and loved ones.

  • Laura Janusch-Smith

    :(( Tragic.. RIP Dan. thoughts are with your family x.

  • Breno Silva

    One of the worst accidents I have ever seen!
    But not as bad as this one:

  • Mel

    The Vegas Track is not suited to Indy Car Racing. The track is to wide and not properly banked for Indy Car and allows to many cars accross the track. The track was designed for NASCAR. An unfortunate bad decision by Indy Car Management to race there costing Wheldon his life. Miraculous no one else was killed. Will Power came damn close. RIP DAN.

  • Mark O’brien

    it's never good when someone loses there life in sport RIP Dan Weldon.

  • Richard Oliff

    A very sad day for racing. Our thoughts are with Dan's family and friends.

  • Keith Morlang

    Tragic, prayers going out to his family!

  • George Latimer

    yes a sad , sad , loss :(

  • Claire Essling

    OMG that is terrible, poor bloke.

    • Ellen Ellie Curtis

      Its really bad!! that circut is not big enough for all them cars travelling as fast as they do. R.I.P Dan

  • Glen Sanderson


  • Robert Gipson

    Thoughts are with your family Dan...RIP.

  • Melanie McQuaid

    So sad