• Sweden edition
 
'Thai prince said he loved me in Swedish'
Martin Arvebro strikes a pose for one of his online videos. This one is about fruit by the way. Photo: YouTube

'Thai prince said he loved me in Swedish'

Published: 04 Jul 2014 16:03 GMT+02:00
Updated: 04 Jul 2014 16:03 GMT+02:00

The 35-year-old made rocketed to online stardom in March 2012.

With a little inspiration from, ahem, The Local, his first video on the 10 Swedish words you won't find in English went viral, clocking almost 500,000 views. 

Two years later, he's a bona fide social media star with a plum job as a radio reporter for Sveriges Radio.

"The first video just exploded and I got so much interest from around the world. In a way I was surprised, as Swedish is a minority language, but it seems like a lot of people want to learn and know more about it," Arvebro told The Local.

Determined not to be a one-hit wonder, he has maintained a prolific output, racking up over 50 videos since his debut covering all sorts of themes such as Eurovision and even Swedish swear words.

Arvebro's style is irreverent, and he has no problem having a laugh at himself. As a student in Australia he struck up a rapport with a Thai prince who was also studying there - and enjoyed a bizarre conversation with the royal in his native tongue.

"The prince leaned over and whispered into my ear, 'Jag älskar dig,' (I love you) and we had a chat in Swedish. Turned out the prince had lived in Sweden for a bit. His handlers looked stunned about the whole thing,"

The Skåne native has generated plenty of fans from around the world, but just like any success story, there are pros and cons.

"A lot of the time I am recognised. One day I was walking down the street and a guy singing in the choir shouted out my name and said he knew my face.

"I get people saying they want to Skype with me to learn Swedish, but I don't have the time for that. A few days after my wedding I got a death threat, but I didn't take it that seriously," he said.

Prior to his YouTube glory he worked as a producer in his own company. He told The Local that he has been making videos since 1998 and was an early advocate of VHS blogging.

The Swede also worked as a teacher in a video production, and his very original take on learning the Swedish language has drawn praise from abroad.

"I've had language teaching experts in the Baltic countries getting in contact saying they really like my approach as I am making learning fun. You are picking things up without even noticing it. For me it is about keeping it entertaining," he said.

He quipped that he hasn't received a call yet from the powers that be at SFI (Swedish for Immigrants), which organizes free lessons for foreigners who wish to learn more than just Abba and fika.

"I got a criticism for my accent as I come from the south. People say I don't speak proper Swedish, but I always maintain that my dialect is closer to most of the languages in Europe so there!" he laughed.

Arvebro added; "In Sweden we have Jantelagen so a lot of people don't like it when you speak up. My videos are certainly an example of speaking out that's for sure."

With a steady stream of followers the 35-year-old said he intends to reach his target of making 100 videos and continue to keep it fresh.

"Right now I am approaching number 60, so I just want to keep being creative and doing things are topical which people want to watch," he said.

As for the best thing about his notoriety?

"If I want to go around the world and travel then I never need a hotel room. I've made lots of friends and contacts as a result of the videos."
 

For more stories about Sweden, join us on Facebook and Twitter

Patrick Reilly (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
National
Pupils find killer's rifle in Swedish sports lesson
The location of the hidden weapon. Photo: Polisen

Pupils find killer's rifle in Swedish sports lesson

Three teenage schoolgirls from southern Sweden were left gobsmacked after finding an AK-47 Kalashnikov that belonged to a convicted murderer, during a physical education class. READ  

International
'Non-existent' EU cooperation on refugees
Refugees in Lampedusa, Italy in 2013. Photo: TT

'Non-existent' EU cooperation on refugees

Sweden's EU commissioner Cecilia Malmström has criticized European Union countries for a lack of solidarity when it comes to taking in refugees. READ  

Politics
Stefan Löfven voted in as new Prime Minister
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

Stefan Löfven voted in as new Prime Minister

Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven has been voted in as the new Prime Minister of Sweden. READ  

Politics
Reinfeldt's top team hold last meeting
Fredrik Reinfeldt is exiting Sweden's political stage. Photo: TT

Reinfeldt's top team hold last meeting

Sweden's outgoing centre-right cabinet have gathered for their last meeting, as Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven prepares to take over as Prime Minister. READ  

Interview
Geena Davis: 'I want to be in a Swedish movie'
Geena Davis. Photo: AP

Geena Davis: 'I want to be in a Swedish movie'

Oscar-winning Hollywood actress Geena Davis was an exchange student in Sweden in the seventies and was once engaged to a Swede. She chatted to the The Local's Natalia Brzezinski about how she'd love to star in a Swedish movie. READ  

Politics
Löfven in U-turn over restaurant sales tax hike
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

Löfven in U-turn over restaurant sales tax hike

Incoming Prime Minister Stefan Löfven won't be increasing taxes in restaurants as promised, despite his strong criticism of the former government's tax cuts in 2012. READ  

Lifestyle
What's On in Sweden: October 2nd - 9th
The Weeping is one of the works on sale this weekend. Photo: Stockholm's Affordable Art Fair

What's On in Sweden: October 2nd - 9th

Stockholm's Affordable Art Fair returns, British rocker Midge Ure is in Malmö and one of Gothenburg's most creative spaces is hosting a ten year anniversary party. READ  

Sport
Malmö beat Olympiacos in Champions clash
Rosenberg celebrates his second goal. Photo: TT

Malmö beat Olympiacos in Champions clash

Malmö became the first Swedish side to win a Champions League match in 14 years after beating Olympiacos 2-0 on Wednesday night. READ  

Education
Three Swedish unis in world's top 100
One of the buildings at the Karolinska Institute. Photo: TT

Three Swedish unis in world's top 100

Three Swedish universities were ranked among the top 100 in the world in the new Times Higher Education ranking, with another two featured in the top 200. READ  

What's next on Sweden's political stage?
Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven. Photo: TT

What's next on Sweden's political stage?

Upcoming Prime Minister Stefan Löfven announced his new Red-Green coalition government on Friday, but what happens next? Here are all the important dates you need to know. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Sponsored Article
Try out your very own office in Stockholm - for free
Gallery
Stefan Löfven through the years
Gallery
People-watching: October 1st
Analysis
Should Sweden's school age be raised?
National
Top Swedish skier killed in Chile avalanche
Blog updates

01 October

Academy-Award Winning Actor Geena Davis on Changing the Way We View Women in Media (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"There are two moments in Geena Davis’s life that molded her into the powerful women’s advocate and founder of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media she is today: living in Sweden and starring in Thelma & Louise. The first part of her personal journey took flight in Sandviken, a small rocky town north of..." READ »

 

01 October

Future tense – ska or kommer att? (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej igen! Karen had a question the following question on that about future tense: Explain when you use “komma att ” and “ska”. I’m running along forever here using “ska” and realize suddenly everyone uses “komma att” this and that all the time! In Swedish there are three different ways to express future tense and they are not..." READ »

 
 
 
National
JohannaN: Jewellery inspired by northern Sweden
National
Apology for Swedish model's stolen photos
Politics
New coalition agrees on defence and migration
Fastighetsbyrån
Gallery
Property of the week: Botkyrka
Education
New government to make school compulsory to 18
Politics
Sweden Democrat wins Deputy Speaker spot
National
Swedish scientists sneak Bob Dylan lyrics into articles
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Gallery
People-watching: September 28th
National
When Italian style meets Swedish simplicity
Lifestyle
Review: Sweden's first alcohol-free nightclub
Gallery
In Pictures: The MS Estonia disaster
Lifestyle
Ten things expat women notice in Sweden
Politics
What's next on Sweden's political stage?
Gallery
Sweden's 2014 election: Most memorable moments
Society
What's on in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 24th
Seaman Oliver Gee with his first lobster
Lifestyle
How to catch the first lobster of the year
Gallery
In Pictures: Fredrik Reinfeldt through the years.
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

865
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN