Laura Cummings: Power of internet is fare game for world to see

As footage of a ticket-dodging passenger becomes the latest YouTube sensation, Laura Cummings looks back at some other website hits

STUNT cycling superstar Danny MacAskill is among those to have achieved cult status through YouTube.

Now, a have-a-go hero rail commuter who adopted a bit of rough justice can be added to the list after a video of him bundling a teenage troublemaker off a ScotRail train in West Lothian attracted almost 200,000 hits.

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The passenger, who has been dubbed “Big Man”, stepped in to assist a senior ticket conductor who was being subjected to foul-mouthed rants by another commuter.

The youngster was trying to blag his way home on the Edinburgh Waverley to Perth service on Friday night with a single ticket that was only valid in the opposite direction, and after he was spotted the conductor told the driver to stop the train until the youth got off.

When the boy refused, a shouting match ensued – until a burly commuter leapt to his feet and frogmarched him off the train at Linlithgow, continuing to push him off when he repeatedly tried to re-board.

A two-and-a-half minute video titled ScotRail No Ticket was posted on to YouTube three days ago and has already been viewed nearly 200,000 times.

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Ian Hems, 27, said he filmed the video while coming home after having a few drinks in the pub and added that he was “firmly behind the big man”.

In the clip, the white-haired ScotRail worker tells the passenger that he can “sit here all night” as he is getting paid for it, but the rest of the passengers will not stand for it.

The youngster – who repeatedly swore at the conductor – then finds himself abruptly ejected from the train by “Big Man”, who first asks the collector, “Do you want me to get him off for you?”

The teen then tries unsuccessfully to barge his way back on the train before the alarm sounds for the door to close.

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On returning to his seat, “Big Man” receives a round of applause, and one passenger – with an Irish accent – is clearly heard saying “cheers big man”.

Mr Hems said the vigilante identified himself to other passengers as “Alan”, but revealed no further details about himself.

The “Big Man” is just the latest in a line of people to achieve almost cult status on YouTube.

Busker Stuart Crout from Bonnyrigg, starred in a Doritos advert on Canadian television in 2009 after a clip of him playing his home-made “kazookeylele” was spotted by producers 3300 miles away. His version of The Final Countdown performed on his home-made instrument – put together from a broken baby piano, half a ukulele and a kazoo – received more than 2.5 million hits on YouTube in just six months.

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In the same year, Edinburgh’s stunt cyclist Danny MacAskill shot to fame after uploading films of his breathtaking leaps and tricks to YouTube.

However, many have also found that appearing in a YouTube video isn’t always a good thing.

Last year, a police investigation was launched after a video on YouTube appeared to show two police officers asleep on duty in the Capital.

The 60-second clip, titled Edinburgh sleeping police, appeared to have been captured by a member of the public, known as calumbro.

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In a commentary the man claimed it was 5am and he had just found the policemen at the A720 Edinburgh bypass at the Lothianburn junction.

In March 2007, a 34-year-old man was arrested and charged with reckless driving after footage appeared on YouTube of a bike racing at 170mph on Lothian roads.

Top 10 YouTube Videos of All Time (as of December 2011)

1 Justin Bieber - Baby ft. Ludacris


2 Jennifer Lopez - On The Floor ft. Pitbull


3 Lady Gaga - Bad Romance


4 Shakira - Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)


5 Eminem - Love The Way You Lie ft. Rihanna


6 Charlie bit my finger - again!


7 Parto in un letto


8 LMFAO - Party Rock Anthem ft. Lauren Bennett, GoonRock 309,973,631 views.

9 Eminem - Not Afraid


10 Justin Bieber - Never Say Never ft. Jaden Smith 284,263,189 views.