Other, profesionally-created music videos generated more views, but when Dodson, a 24-year-old Alabama student, gave an angry TV interview about an attempted rape against his younger sister, he became a viral hit. When a video turned that rant into an auto-tuned song, "Bed Intruder Song," Dodson became a full-fledged Internet sensation.
The "Bed Intruder Song" is the top YouTube video of the year, the Google Inc.-owned company announced Monday. YouTube added the view counts for two versions of the video, which put its total at over 61 million views.
YouTube separated commercial music videos from their top-10 list. Otherwise, all the top 10 videos would have been by either Justin Bieber, Shakira, Eminem, Rihanna or Lady Gaga. With more than 406 million views, Bieber's video for "Baby" trumped all others.
The "Bed Intruder" video was remixed by New York musicians Evan and Michael Gregory who are also known for their Web series "Auto-Tune the News." The song charted on iTunes, with profits being split between Dodson and the Gregorys.
"Blessings come in disguise," Dodson earlier told The Associated Press.
The second most-watched video was another made-for-YouTube riff: a parody of Ke$ha's "Tik Tok" by the musical sketch Web series Key of Awesome. More than 50.6 million have watched the mock version of the popular pop song.
In the third most-watched video, a potential new pop star was born. In it, 13-year-old Greyson Chance (who has been compared to Bieber) sings Lady Gaga's "Paparazzi" while playing piano at a sixth-grade music recital.
The top 10 also included: a video from the "Annoying Orange" series; a viral ad from Old Spice; the hysterically happy "double rainbow" guy; OK Go's video to "This Too Shall Pass"; the trailer for the "Twilight" film "Eclipse"; Jimmy Kimmel surprising a 3-year-old Bieber fan with the young star; and a stunt driving video by rally racer Ken Block.
YouTube said it made an exception in its rankings for OK Go's music video because the band is no longer on a major label. In March, the band left EMI's Capitol Records to start Paracadute Recordings.
Mia Quagliarello, YouTube community manager, noted that several of 2010's top videos were made by people or companies that attempt to create YouTube videos for a living. YouTube shares advertising revenue with uploaders who are "partners."
Many of the so-called amateurs that helped build YouTube have gone pro.
"More and more people are seeing YouTube as a place they can make it their career," said Quagliarello. "We try to give them the tools and the financials to make that happen."