John and William 'Hank' Green are two brothers who decided in 2007 to try a new kind of relationship; no phone calls, texting, e-mails or personal contact, just video blogs, or vlogs. They called this Brotherhood 2.0. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays the brothers uploaded a four-minute video to each other alternately.
These videos discussed their careers, milestones in their lives, observations about the universe's complexity and discussions about happenings in the world. They became so popular that the brothers continued the videos, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to this day and for the foreseeable future. They are now known as the Vlogbrothers.
The Vlogbrothers. Image by Cadwaladr from Wikipedia.
Hank Green is a recording artist and journalist with two successful studio albums. He has interviewed NASA employees and developed websites devoted to the preservation of the environment that have been featured in the New York Times as well on many programs discussing the fate of the world. He is also the inventor of 2D glasses, to take out the punch from 3D movies and turn everything back to the easy visuals you're used to. He developed these lenses because his wife complained of headaches when watching 3D movies, so now she can watch them in comfort.
John Green is a New York Times bestselling author and recipient of the Printz award for his debut novel Looking For Alaska in 2006. Since then his accolades have piled up as he hits the bestselling list time after time. His most recent book, The Fault In Our Stars (2011), hit the number one slot on the day of its release, with pre-sales already dwarfing the achievements of other novels. This was largely due to the complete sell-out of all 100 000 copies of pre-sale novels.
They were all bought by Nerdfighters.
The community of their followers and supporters is several hundred thousand strong. They call themselves Nerdfighters, citizens of Nerdfighteria, an online community spanning thousands of forums, blogs and sharing pages. These people do not fight nerds, they fight to be nerds, to spread knowledge and compassion to their peers and the world. To decrease all that is wrong [or sucky] and increase what is good [or awesome].
The brothers have started several charities and have given hundreds of thousands of dollars to cancer research and the building of schools and hospitals where they are desperately needed. Their annual drive, The Project for Awesome, only allows two days for donations. Aiming for $100,000 in their first year (2007) they surpassed their goal and raised $483,446, which has only increased each year since. This is to 'decrease world suck' and the brothers ask their community what they think sucks the most, poverty, health care, cancer or anything else they want to donate to and then distribute the funds in direct proportion to their level of need in the eyes of the donators.
Obviously every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the occasional weekend upload for six years makes for a lot of videos, and I'm not asking you to watch all of them, [although you should totally watch all of them] but maybe watch ten or so of the most interesting titles in their recent videos and see how you feel. There are also two extra channels, Crash Course and SciShow, full of short educational videos to help people understand everything from penny stocks to the French Revolution.
Below is a taste of what to look forward to.
This video series, and the community surrounding them is one of the most special things in my life and it makes me happy every time I think about it. Two brothers, hundreds of thousands of followers, a community of people who want more love and understanding in the world, and have a keen interest in science. Nerds and happiness, that's all it is.