The video is serious; it premiered at the meetings of the American Economic Association a few weeks ago.
It was the idea of Russ Roberts, a professor at George Mason University. Russ uses his academic position eclectically: he’s published 3 novels featuring economic thinking.* He was also one of the earliest economics bloggers, and now writes at Cafe Hayek. He was also podcasting when no one knew what it was; check out his EconTalk site.
Here is a podcast from National Public Radio discussing the development of the video: it started with a video producer from Spike TV (‽ ‽ ‽) who liked to listen to Russ’s podcasts. The first 3 minutes is (tolerable) small talk. About 11 minutes they discuss showing it to Ke$ha … who liked it (and even passed a pop quiz). Roberts even critiques Tik Tok. There’s also an article that covers most of the details.
* I liked and recommend The Price of Everything: A Parable of Possibility and Prosperity and The Choice: A Fable of Free Trade and Protection (3rd Edition) . I haven't yet read The Invisible Heart: An Economic Romance.