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Meet the YouTubers Determined to Find Lost Media

New media meets old.

When I was 11, I remember seeing a weird commercial on television. During the commercial break of a Slamball rerun (remember Slamball?) on Cartoon Network, I saw an AIDS awareness ad. It was made specifically for kids, and it was accompanied by an annoying rap. I distinctly remember the chorus: “What do you know about AIDS?!” It’s been stuck in my head for years. I guess you’re expecting me to link the commercial I’m describing, right? Well, I can’t, because I’ve never found it. I’ve never even seen it mentioned online. This commercial is what’s known as “lost media.”

Online, there’s a lost media community dedicated to preserving everything from unaired television pilots to unreleased video game prototypes. Currently, the lost media community exists on both YouTube and the Lost Media wiki, an archive of thousands of lost media topics. LSuperSonicQ is a well-known member of the lost media community and has many videos covering lost media topics such as the Johnny Bravo pilot and unreleased My Chemical Romance songs. His fascination with lost media started on YouTube.

“I knew nothing about lost media at all until I watched a video from this other kind of lost media YouTuber,” said LSuperSonicQ. “His name is blameitonjorge. And this is like, back in 2015… It was like, top 40 lost or banned episodes of kids TV shows.” LSuperSonicQ watched the video, and from that point on, he said, he was “hooked.”

Lost media searches can take a long time, depending on what is being sought after and whether there are any complications, such as nondisclosure agreements, people leaving jobs, or creators just not remembering past projects. LSuperSonicQ took months to find the lost pilot for the TV show Kappa Mikey, which aired on Nicktoons Network in the mid-2000s. This lost pilot was made in order to pitch the show to MTV. LSuperSonicQ was able to contact the creator of the show and convince him to upload that original pilot to YouTube. He now considers this his favorite piece of lost media. Plus, the search was a good learning experience for him.