Global Nomad, Dancing Around the World Since 2003

Matt Harding is an example of the global nomad phenomenon. In the 21st century, relatively cheap international flights combined with inexpensive mobile phones, video cameras, Internet connections, social media, cheap lodging, the blurring of international boundaries online, and a traveling infrastructure have made the world a lot smaller.

Between 2003 and 2005, Harding innocently recorded himself dancing badly in about 15 countries around the world, and uploaded a 3:43-minute video to Youtube.com in 2005 shortly after it launched. The video immediately went viral, and he produced more goofy dancing videos in 2006, 2008 and 2012.  His dancing videos have been seen by tens of millions of people worldwide, and each one seemed to be better than the last.

They took on real social significance, sending a message that the world is not really the very scary place we see on the news, but a far safer, warmer,  and friendlier place where people from all cultures share music, dancing, smiles and fun. He actually made a living dancing around the world, writing a book, winning sponsorships and making ads based on his notoriety, before settling down with a wife and children and stopped traveling.

Here are his two best videos, from 2008 and 2012:

In 2015, he started a Kickstarter.com campaign to dance around the world for the fourth time, and amazingly, more than 4,000 people have contributed nearly $150,000 to make his trip possible, and as he says, “to make the world dance together in 2016.” More than 50,000 people have subscribed to his Facebook page to follow his journey.

Here’s a post from his page.

Out of nowhere, my son asks:

“Do you think when I grow up I’ll be able to travel the world with you?”

“Well, yes. I hope so. Where do you want to go?”

“India, Australia, Brazil, the United Kingdom, and somewhere in the east.”

“Like Japan?”

“What’s Japan?”

“It’s where sushi and ninjas and giant robots come from.”

“Wait. Are you kidding me? All that stuff comes from one place?”

“Yup.”

“Then definitely Japan.”

 

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