This is why we can't have nice things

26 mar 2021
5 101 878 Áhorf

This video is about stuff: light bulbs, printers, phones and why they aren't better. Go to and use code VERITASIUM to get a 2-year plan plus 1 additional month with a huge discount. It’s risk free with Nord’s 30 day money-back guarantee!
The Man in the White Suit -
London, B. (1932). Ending the depression through planned obsolescence. -
Slade, G. (2009). Made to break: Technology and obsolescence in America. Harvard University Press -
Krajewski, M. (2014). The great lightbulb conspiracy. IEEE spectrum, 51(10), 56-61. -
Planet Money, The Phoebus Cartel -
The Light Bulb Conspiracy -
Special thanks to Patreon supporters: Mac Malkawi, Oleksii Leonov, Michael Schneider, Jim Osmun, Tyson McDowell, Ludovic Robillard, jim buckmaster, fanime96, Juan Benet, Ruslan Khroma, Robert Blum, Richard Sundvall, Lee Redden, Vincent, Lyvann Ferrusca, Alfred Wallace, Arjun Chakroborty, Joar Wandborg, Clayton Greenwell, Pindex, Michael Krugman, Cy 'kkm' K'Nelson, Sam Lutfi, Ron Neal
Written by Derek Muller and Petr Lebedev
Animation by Ivan Tello
Filmed by Derek Muller and Raquel Nuno
Edited by Derek Muller
Video supplied by Getty Images
Music by Jonny Hyman and from"Aquatic Planet", "Rhythm of Dreams", "Tread Lightly", "Unexpected Visitors", "Curved Mirrors" "Drunken Lullaby" "Fluorescent Lights"
Thumbnail by Raquel Nuno and Karri Denise

  • Try blue, it's the new red!

    Zach SheaZach Shea4 mínútum síðan
  • Thanks for pointing out that our lives are made worse by the profit motive! Planned obsolescence is one of the ways in which capitalism is choking the environment and it makes me angry

    Theo WildTheo Wild8 mínútum síðan
  • Hardcore leftist propaganda if ever I've seen it. How about all of the whining leftists actually start a business with the supposedly superior lightbulb? no of course not because then they'd get BTFO'd by reality. Pfeh, all leftists are irredeemably evil and woefully stupid.

    Dominick DestineDominick Destine23 mínútum síðan
  • But if the products would be bad then the country have to print more money and more money = more inflation witch can make money absolutely worthless

    Dainel SolovDainel Solov24 mínútum síðan
  • Fun little video that shows how humanity ended itself, alongside WALL-E.

    Amy EAmy E34 mínútum síðan
  • Matsushitty.

    Lickorish AllsortsLickorish Allsorts54 mínútum síðan
  • So apart from the instance in burning Apple (who have increased performance year over year in their tablets and phones) and then using a MacBook? Oh and the fact that Apple HAVE now just revolutionised their product with their own chips in their computers that use much less power while maintaining the same level of performance (or surpassing it), the BBC (who run QI and commission it) is funded by the British tax payer. Circumventing that is like ripping off the US cable networks.

    Spencer GibsonSpencer GibsonKlukkustund síðan
  • Why can’t we have nice things?? Capitalism

    Marcelo CaraveoMarcelo CaraveoKlukkustund síðan
  • CAPITALISM SUCKS this is all capitalism's fault ffs

    Hayden LehmanHayden LehmanKlukkustund síðan
  • I have several incandescent light bulbs that have been running for about 30+ years. The secret? First the bulbs are clear glass 4 watt night light bulbs. Second is special fixture that runs 2 bulbs in series. Third is a diode in series with the bulbs. This reduces the power to point that the filament glows, but not brightly; similar to that firehouse bulb. It makes a nice bathroom night light that I leave on 7x24.

    Russel BrooksRussel BrooksKlukkustund síðan
  • Right to repair is a retarded concept. I can't fathom how *more* legislation would ever solve our problems. The only true way is competition, and the only way that's going to happen is if we make it really easy to enter the market. You're simply begging for crony capitalism when you support right to repair.

    EuphoricPenguinEuphoricPenguinKlukkustund síðan
  • This is happening today in other electronic industries. What they're doing is greed, and ripping off the consumer. While all being legal.

    Jay JayJay Jay2 klukkustundum síðan
  • an everlasting lightbulb would be a FANTASTIC business model. just sell them for 10 times the price, people would still buy them. every human needs a couple so you would make BILLIONS and the competition wouldnt sell anything. after everybody got light bulbs you would minimize production for replacements and reinvest the money somewhere else

    Derva Kommt von hintenDerva Kommt von hinten2 klukkustundum síðan
  • But when it comes to Big Pharma, Veritasum and Bill Gates are telling us ARNm vaccines are meant to do us good... and we should not believe in conspiracies... of course...

    Jacques-Etienne GrandjeanJacques-Etienne Grandjean2 klukkustundum síðan
  • He says those words about LED bulbs as ive replaced literal DOZENS of them in my own home due to crappy solder joints im pretty sure, just easier to swap than fix.

    Jesse SmithJesse Smith2 klukkustundum síðan
  • at 15:21 how the hell did he unscrew the light bulb and hold in to it without melting his hand

    Shan SandaruwanShan Sandaruwan3 klukkustundum síðan
  • Where the hell is this guy getting his LED bulbs? they last a long time but not that long...

    RedKingRedKing3 klukkustundum síðan
  • That fabric scientist sounds like a young Khajiit

    Ronald CatullusRonald Catullus3 klukkustundum síðan
  • I usually dont come up with conspiracy theories but my Logitech gaming mice used to fail regularly - until I changed the cable of a failed mouse with the cable of an ordinary mouse. Now its working fine from years and years.

    Vijay NinelVijay Ninel4 klukkustundum síðan
  • D-did they forget that light bulbs can sHATTER?

  • you are full of it.

    qwertyqwerty1955qwertyqwerty19554 klukkustundum síðan
  • This is why we cant have nice things darling, because you break them, i had to take them away

    erickerick4 klukkustundum síðan
  • GM used to do this as well. By company policy parts were designed to fail shortly after the warranty. I know someone who worked for GM who saw the memo's. I have no idea if they still do this or not.

    Benjamin BoyleBenjamin Boyle4 klukkustundum síðan
  • Just to clear the air - There are everlasting light bulbs...if powered correctly. Even a "dead" fluorescent tube will continue to light indefinitely if subjected to a radio signal or a high frequency electric signal. The tools and resources are already available and have been for over 100 years.

    Matt CombattiMatt Combatti4 klukkustundum síðan
  • Unsubscribed when I saw your double mask

    Joshua ReynvaanJoshua Reynvaan4 klukkustundum síðan
  • thank you asus for making my computer last for 8 years without any sign of degrading (except for the battery which i replaced once)...

    Дмитрий ХабаровДмитрий Хабаров4 klukkustundum síðan
  • Companies sabotaging products for profit :D We gotta love capitalism.

    Jonathan RochaJonathan Rocha5 klukkustundum síðan
  • Astrazeneca could be banned obsolence maybe

    Its Just an AppleIts Just an Apple5 klukkustundum síðan
  • Oh, except we haven't. Planned obsolescence is pretty much as present in LEDs as it was in incandescent bulbs, sadly.

    Eduard Fornés i CatalàEduard Fornés i Català5 klukkustundum síðan
  • Now this is content ✌🏼

    Priyam PaithankarPriyam Paithankar6 klukkustundum síðan
  • So are VPN companies and Streaming services also conspiring?

    Bunzen KantzenBunzen Kantzen6 klukkustundum síðan
  • actchually... they make the LED lamps with the same principle. the ones I buy usually last couple of months, which appears as a shorter span compared to conventional lamps. Excellent video. I'd have also liked to hear about the enviromental impact this selling strategy has, since many people can't connect the dots.

    quantumcakequantumcake6 klukkustundum síðan
  • I dream of a world where Greed is seen as a form of mental illness.

    tilemacrotilemacro6 klukkustundum síðan
  • Thank you for ending on a possitive note

    SlainerSlainer7 klukkustundum síðan
  • I disagree with the led being everlasting... I am constantly replacing my current "amazing" LED bulbs... I think there should be an early investigation to see if they are doing the same to LED bulbs

    RebelijahRebelijah7 klukkustundum síðan
  • why did the same not happen to led??

    ayvengo eayvengo e8 klukkustundum síðan
  • Right to repair = Louis Rossman

    Sidharth VijayanSidharth Vijayan8 klukkustundum síðan
  • Apple are releasing new phones every year, and are ending support for old ones. Just like Microsoft is doing. Even though the iphone 6 or Windows 7 was perfectly good.

    EsconisEsconis8 klukkustundum síðan
  • This video was shockingly interesting🤯 I was hooked the whole way

    Smiley !Smiley !9 klukkustundum síðan
  • What episode of qi is he on?

    Thijs BThijs B9 klukkustundum síðan
  • I never had a light bulb lasting more then +_5 year.... back to square 1...

    Bart HuijgensBart Huijgens9 klukkustundum síðan
  • I couldn't help but noticing the video security camera monitoring the light bulb. How long has it been on and what happens when it gets turned off? I think there maybe a conspiracy here just to get people to be exposed to an advertising platform.

    equipt4soundequipt4sound9 klukkustundum síðan
  • What about the massive withdraw of planned obsolescence: pollution.

    Ao sikaAo sika10 klukkustundum síðan
  • The EU's green narrative is only to create a new industry and thus jobs. So I wouldn't call them a saint...

    Patrick KPatrick K10 klukkustundum síðan
  • Thats why I don’t update my freakin phone. I knew all those updates were doing is trying to make me buy another one. Damn corporations

    OmenvreerOmenvreer10 klukkustundum síðan
  • here in the Philippines someone invented an engine running on water but no one really wants to sponsor it. cause you know what country hated the idea the most

    Child StarChild Star10 klukkustundum síðan
    • Look up Stanley myers on ISpast, he invented a sparkplug that separated the hydrogen from water so any engine could run off any water, salty sea water, fresh, didn't matter. He wanted the world to use his technology and met with some supposed US government men at a restaurant to discuss moving forward with it, he took a sip from his cranberry juice, grasped his neck, said 'they've poisoned me' & died.

      Ross RossiterRoss Rossiter3 klukkustundum síðan
  • I lived through the 80s when planned obsolescence in the auto industry was at its peak. Our POS Ford escort broke down and ruined our Disneyland vacation, then a year later our POS new Chevy cavalier got us stuck in the desert for hours. I've never bought an American car in my adult life because of those experiences. They need to legislate this better with right-to-repair laws to restore confidence in American products.

    AtomicPunk23AtomicPunk2310 klukkustundum síðan
  • The LED bulb lasting a long time is misinformation. Many designs require capacitors and to save a few extra cents and make them last shorter they cheap out and the capacitors fail, including explode by venting caustic fumes. Further, they drive the LEDs with too much current for the heat dissipation. I’ve had many many LED bulbs fail within the first 100 hours, all of these problems can be identified by non-technical people with limited engineering experience and as such are purposely made to fail early.

    burtosisburtosis11 klukkustundum síðan
  • Thanks for the great video! Hopes Rossman can use this in the quest for right to repair!

    bananernasfarfarbananernasfarfar11 klukkustundum síðan
  • This really shouldn't come as a surprise. We literally had a corporation-backed president pushing bad lightbulbs for four years.

    JDHJDH11 klukkustundum síðan
  • thank god we finally reached the everlasting lightbulb. with led lightbulb

    arasharash11 klukkustundum síðan
  • Even android phones are designed like that

    Jerson AtiloJerson Atilo11 klukkustundum síðan
  • i thought this was primary school knowledge they do thing to break so they can still selling the thing

    MorpheusMorpheus11 klukkustundum síðan
  • Almost like the system that worships the profit motive cripples innovation, hmmmm

    LadeLade11 klukkustundum síðan
  • great video! we need all the anti-consumerist propaganda we can get

    ognjen usumovićognjen usumović11 klukkustundum síðan
  • This is like an Ordinary Things video but without british jokes

    Javier CamposJavier Campos13 klukkustundum síðan
  • 15:44 yes bright bit it is over run mode. It last may be months or year depends by your equipment. Led can run more than 120 year but it must run low current . Another thing is the power supply must locating separately. The led bulbs have the worst design ever. The led driver locating just middle of the bulb, where is the hottest. Electrolytic capacitors can not handle that heat and dies very quickly. Lower current = less heat. Possible you need to replace hundreds of led drivers within 1000 year but led runs perfectly. Just capacitors is so bad.... And these over driven led bulbs often does not have the heatsink too... only plastic and it melts...

    Simple MechanicsSimple Mechanics13 klukkustundum síðan
  • This guy is one of the very few people that know how to incorporate my most hated of things... the ad. As much as I hate to admit it, he makes the ad included actually interesting. Go figure. Well, first of all, he warns you very quickly at the start that it's coming at the end, and then at the end he puts his own clever spin on the product and makes it very relatable. Well played, sir, well played... damn you =)

    sfincione2000sfincione200014 klukkustundum síðan
  • Don't know about others but I have already changed led bulbs of entire house more than four times in last 4-5 years.. they fcking don't last longer than a year or two at most.. no matter which company I buy from

    yoger exyoger ex14 klukkustundum síðan
  • Smart guys will understand the real message, that is unsaid in this video 😎

    Mr. LogicianMr. Logician15 klukkustundum síðan
  • The problem still exists in LED lightbulbs. There's a capacitor inside the light which smoothens the current for the LEDs inside the bulb. It's worth around 10 cents if they use the best material, and around 5 cents if they use the worst material. So, 5 cents difference. I can assure you that almost everytime an LED bulb blows, it's because this capacitor is bad material and it failed. The lightbulb is also all glued and you can't open it up without breaking it. But I could open a few, replaced the cap, and they're still working after years of use. So, they intentionally use bad capacitor while the price difference to make the bulb work for like 20 years instead of 1 year is not more than 5 cents.

    Masoud GheysariMasoud Gheysari15 klukkustundum síðan
  • My most recent experience with planned obsolescence: Most laptops typically can be unscrewed at the bottom and opened up. It is necessary to do this every few months to blow the dust and hair out of your computer fan with some compressed air- especially if you have pets. If you don't ever clean that dust and hair out, the fan slowly gets clogged up, ceases to work properly, and your computer can become dangerously hot. A lot of people are unaware that this maintenance needs to be done at all- which is a win for the company that sold the computer when it overheats and breaks. However, apparently some computer manufacturers don't even want those who know they need to clean their laptops to clean them. A relative of mine recently noticed that her laptop was overheating and that the fan is clogged. So she turned it over to unscrew it and clean it out. There were no screw holes. She called the professionals, and the professionals told her that model of laptop could not be cleaned. It was *glued* together rather than screwed. From now on anytime my family goes laptop shopping, we will be checking the bottom for screws!

    AlyenbirdAlyenbird15 klukkustundum síðan
  • Many companies do this crap...

    rpaull3rpaull316 klukkustundum síðan
  • The economic model is true of the vast majority of consumer products Longevity of products has a adverse effect on capitalism in the context of mass marketing. The answer to the equation is to remove the monitary systems dominance over decision making.

    Tony FurtadoTony Furtado16 klukkustundum síðan
  • Quality content! Thank you for sharing the truth and for educating us!

    Louie SangalangLouie Sangalang17 klukkustundum síðan
  • capitalism was a mistake

    thecatsredthecatsred17 klukkustundum síðan
  • Jesus of Nazareth, who was God in the flesh of a man, died for the remission of sin, including yours, was buried, and rose form the dead 3 days later. If you simply believe in this to apply to you and trust Jesus to save you from hell then you have everlasting life in heaven. As Jesus says in John 3:14 "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: 15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life."

    TheModer8terTheModer8ter18 klukkustundum síðan
  • The other reason is because of a false economy that depends upon wage-slavery in order to support corporate profits and private banks run by the Fed.

    Jessica Jones, Series of PaintingsJessica Jones, Series of Paintings18 klukkustundum síðan
  • such a shame even knowing this we are not changing our ways

    niraj botheniraj bothe18 klukkustundum síðan
  • 讲的真好

    wzguitarwzguitar19 klukkustundum síðan
  • My old Samsung S3 crapped out 5 days after the warranty expired...

    Zachariah PinkstonZachariah Pinkston19 klukkustundum síðan
  • truly great video

    TheGodlike300TheGodlike30019 klukkustundum síðan
  • Why do I have to keep replacing my LED lightbulbs then?

    Andrew WillisAndrew Willis20 klukkustundum síðan
  • Your entire channel is at jeopardy because Bill Gates is behind creating COVID-19 virus. It is a man-made virus and for somebody to predict that only a few years before it came out is too coincidental. And now ironically he is helping support in creating a vaccine. Follow the money!

    Jonny DJonny D20 klukkustundum síðan
  • If humans are put out of a job by machines, then I suppose you could make more long lasting products since less people's jobs and the profits are dependent on an economy of scale and planned obsolescence. So I guess thats kind of a plus-side to the automation issue.

    Declan PatchDeclan Patch20 klukkustundum síðan
  • Every video from this guy is like a documentary

    khalifa malamikhalifa malami20 klukkustundum síðan

    Fausto BottaFausto Botta20 klukkustundum síðan
  • Capitalism just keeps screwing us.

    justsomeguyjustsomeguy21 klukkustund síðan
  • And while watching this im focus at my light bulb 💡

    Eli McRibsEli McRibs22 klukkustundum síðan
  • I like that the built-in NordVPN ad prioritizes content over privacy. Love the channel btw.

    D RayD Ray22 klukkustundum síðan
  • This greed made our planet inhabitable. Think about it. Stop buying Apple products. You have the power to change the world!

    Emil CioranEmil Cioran22 klukkustundum síðan
  • human planned obsolescence

    Gabe HopkinsGabe Hopkins22 klukkustundum síðan
  • So what makes you think that covid was not fabricated? Who do we trust?

    Galav khuranaGalav khurana22 klukkustundum síðan
  • I love this, it never came into my mind that companies do obsolescence on their products so people would keep buying on them, all along I thought these companies are working so hard to create something with the best durability to outsold their competition. Thanks for this info, now I would be more keen on buying products, actually I would start by reading the nutritional value of foods I buy in supermarkets just to make sure, and soon I would also start reading terms of condition before agreeing.

    K GK G22 klukkustundum síðan
  • nice vid!

    notjacknotjack23 klukkustundum síðan
  • has there never been a power outage there?

    Lance LeonardLance Leonard23 klukkustundum síðan
  • Greed!! Thank you for this video. Most people are blind and haven't got a clue about what's going on right in front of their face. I've been saying the same thing about phones. And that consumer stupid enough to get the newest phone when it comes out is the reason phones are 1,000 dollars. It's not over. It's only getting worse with all products. Greed!!!

    jsaleen17jsaleen1723 klukkustundum síðan
  • Not allowed to be one big happy channel...depends on "Censorship Requirements". Ok, Now, Research "Flat Earth". See just how difficult it is to find Positive Feedback on that Interesting Subject. Which is Absolutely True. Anyway, regardless of Your Stance on Flat Earth, - Ha ha, I just had to. Anyway, your shows are quite good. Thank You. "Eric Dubay" is the greatest positive source on the "Mainstream Taboo Subject". That Scare Technique Should Pique Your Critical Thinking.

    Dodd RougeauDodd Rougeau23 klukkustundum síðan
  • i said they deserve to exiled into a black hole.

    Daa3.1416 SaaDaa3.1416 SaaDegi Síðan síðan
  • Ahh are you telling me we might have already found a cure for cancer but some scientist was killed/found dead in his/her apartment 🤔

    Amrit SinghAmrit SinghDegi Síðan síðan
  • Where's the references to the planned obsolescence for Apple batteries? Oh right, you don't have one.

    Andrew RileyAndrew RileyDegi Síðan síðan
  • The dislikes are most definatly iphone users.

    Sam HookSam HookDegi Síðan síðan
  • i dont hate capitalism... its just too much greedy sometimes...

    nowave Beatsnowave BeatsDegi Síðan síðan
  • I'm changing LED lightbulbs every 2 years The warrenty is 1 year. So, they catch up with that.

    Lynx LynxovLynx LynxovDegi Síðan síðan
  • Now imagine Phoeubus Cartel of pharmaceutical companies...

    Przemysław KrukPrzemysław KrukDegi Síðan síðan
  • The iPhone example isn’t a good one because batteries naturally decay over time. Once solid state batteries are perfected that will be less of a problem

    chidorirasenganzchidorirasenganzDegi Síðan síðan
  • Real knowledge on youtube. Veritasium is on top of the game.

    Tiago CavalcantiTiago CavalcantiDegi Síðan síðan
  • Amazing video

    jatan shahjatan shahDegi Síðan síðan
  • Haven't bought an Apple product since iPhone 3! Will never support that company again!

    WoosttyWoosttyDegi Síðan síðan
  • Its all because we are getting dumber and average consumer intelligence is decreasing

    DubsporeDubsporeDegi Síðan síðan