But Still No Cash for the Star Wars Kid


It's possible to profit from unexpected YouTube fame. Just ask Antoine Dodson, the man whose impromptu rant about the rapist who assaulted his sister was autotuned into "The Bed Intruder Song." The New York Times reports that the track

has now been seen more than 10 million times on YouTube and reached No. 3 on the iTunes R&B chart….What distinguishes this surprise hit from other viral videos is that its accidental star, Mr. Dodson, is sharing in all the profits from the auto-tuned version and hopes that his new fame could be a route out of the projects for his family.

In an interview with Wired about their hit, Evan Gregory said, "Antoine is participating in all of the revenue from the sale of anything we do [with the song], 50-50." His brother, Michael, added: "We're really breaking 'unintentional singing' ground, so we're trying to set precedents by making it so that Antoine, or whoever that artist might be in the future, has a stake not only as an artist but as a co-author of the song. It's like you said: He wrote the lyrics, he's the one who put it out there. What we're doing on iTunes and on any other sales, we're splitting the revenue after it gets through Apple down the middle."…

While Mr. Dodson told ABC News this week that his sister's attacker was still on the loose, he also said that he has made "a nice amount of money," from his various new income streams: "enough to move my family from the projects."