Earlier this week I came across a post on the Google Operating System blog about a YouTube Easter egg that turns the results page into comic sans when you search for the “doge meme” and I was inspired to put together a list of all the Easter eggs on YouTube because how fun are Easter eggs?
Disclaimer: I’ve done my best to put together a list of every single Easter egg I could find, but I’m betting (and hoping!) that there are more out there. If you find one that’s missing from the list please let me know so I can add it!
And now….to the Easter eggs!
Are you familiar with the doge meme? If not, Know Your Meme explains: “Doge is a slang term for ‘dog’ that is primarily associated with pictures of Shiba Inus (nicknamed ‘Shibe’) and internal monologue captions on Tumblr. These photos may be photoshopped to change the dog’s face or captioned with interior monologues in Comic Sans font.”
Performing a search for “doge meme” on YouTube will replace all the text on the results page with the Internet’s favorite font to make fun of – Comic Sans! The page will continue to return results in Comic Sans for all searches until you refresh the page.
“Do the Harlem Shake”
Back in March of 2013, when the Harlem Shake went viral and search results for the crazy dance meme were on the rise, YouTube introduced a Harlem Shake Easter egg. When you do a YouTube search for “Do the Harlem Shake”, the video site will do a little Harlem Shake of its own.
Earlier this year, for YouTube’s Geek Week, the video site unveiled a whole slew of new Easter eggs. One was an interactive Missile Command game. While watching any video, type the year 1980 – not in the search or comments, just on your keyboard while on the video page (you may have to click off of the video in the white area of the screen first or pressing the numbers’ll just make the video jump around in the timecode).
Typing “1980” will morph your screen into the classic Atari game and you’ll have to protect the video you’re watching from missiles that are raining down and cracking the video player.
Snake Game: While we’re on the subject of old video games, I’m gonna take a second here to mention the Snake game Easter egg that YouTube used to have. You could hold down the left arrow key on your keyboard while on a video page in order to play Snake while you watched the video. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to get this to work anymore. If anyone has success with this, please let me know – it was one of my faves!
The Fibonacci Sequence
Mathematicians, rejoice! Also released during Geek Week was the Fibonacci Sequence Easter egg. Just type “Fibonacci” into the search bar and watch your results pop up in a Fibonacci spiral!
ASCII-style Geek Week Search Results
Want to view results for a whole bunch of Geek Week YouTube videos in old school ASCII-style? Just do a search for “/ Geek Week” and that’s exactly what you’ll get!
“Beam me up, Scotty”
Want Montgomery Scott to beam up your search results? Just type “Beam me up, Scotty” or “Beam me up Scotty” sans comma into the YouTube search and it shall be done!
“Use the force, Luke”
You can’t have a Star Trek Easter egg without having a Star Wars Easter egg, right? YouTube doesn’t disappoint. When you do a search for “Use the force, Luke” or “Use the force Luke” your results will appear in a dizzying display of “the force,” which definitely comes across better on the actual site than in a screenshot.
MIA Easter Eggs
In addition to the Snake game Easter egg, mentioned above below Missile Command, a number of other Easter eggs that used to work now appear to be M.I. A. These include the following:
My Little Pony: During Geek Week, a search for “bronies” or “ponies” would make My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic ponies appear. Additionally, searching for the names of specific My Little Pony characters (including Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash, Applejack, Twilight Sparkle, Rarity and others) would change the color of the search bar:
Leetspeak: In honor of Geek Week, YouTube released a Leetspeak Easter egg. Typing 1337 while on a video page (not in the comments or search bar) would change the comments into LEET (1337). It seems to have stopped working after YouTube switched over to the new Google+ commenting system.
YouTube also releases special video player add-ons on occasion, including a snowflake around the holidays that made it snow onscreen, a special dancing Psy on the Gangnam Style video to celebrate 1 billion views, a special rainbow Nyan Cat video player and more. You can find a good roundup of these types of Easter eggs on Wikipedia.
As I mentioned, if you see any Easter eggs that I missed I’d love to add them to the list. Feel free to shoot me an email or just leave a note in the comments below! I’ll also be updating as new Easter eggs are discovered.