Let me start this blog post by first defining what a meme is. A meme, as defined by Webster, is "an idea, behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture." The word itself is a shortened version of the word mimeme which means imitated, and was originally coined in the 70s by an evolutionary biologist, Richard Dawkins. Mimeme is a concept which explains the phenomena of the spread of ideas in a culture. Specifically, Dawkins used the term to refer to anything in culture that would be considered a replication of something else.
Now, let’s fast forward to the rise of the Internet and thus the Internet meme was born! The Internet meme is spread rapidly through various online methods: email, blogs, forums, and mainly social networks like Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.
Every single one of us who has spent ANY amount of time on the Web has come into direct contact with memes. As the author of this little blog entry, I am going to be biased to my favorites, but just know that I like turtles…and memes.
So, are you ready for my favorites in no particular order?
- I LIKE TURTLES (obviously):
What else can I say about this besides, who doesn’t like turtles? From that 18 seconds of zombie randomness in 2007 came over 37 million views on YouTube and 241,000 results on Google.
Now, I am definitely biased because I am a cat person and secretly wish they could talk. If you think kids say the darndest things, imagine what animals would say.
Being a huge fan of the Cookie Monster, this one will always make me laugh. This is a meme slang that you will see cross meme media with LOLcats mainly, but there was also a fun video subset that would add eyes and teeth to videos and like MAGIC, you have Om nom nom nom.
- ANTOINE DODSON:
44 million views on YouTube (the most watched video of 2010) and the No. 1 costume of 2010. This is during the rise of auto-tuning everything. See, the news can be fun after all, kids.
- ER MAH GERD:
Goosebumps is the Harry Potter of my generation and the Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys of the generation before. When someone creates a meme like this, my social media generation is going to spread it like wildfire.
Well, the best part about this one is that the original girl came out and topped the meme with her ERMAHGERD I’M HOT meme. The Internet exploded for a day and determined that she was the real thing and the original Berks Girl.
The ERMAHGERD has now moved to pets, which is the likely cycle of the greatest memes. They then go into an overplayed coma until they reach our parents, where they are brought to a speedy and timely Internet death.
So at this point, you must be asking yourself, “Why do I care, Somer?”
My answer is this: the Internet has done unfathomably amazing things to our world. It has collapsed evil dictators, crossed traditional communication lines and borders, and has brought cultures together. I also think it has brought people from worlds apart together to laugh and be joined in the most ridiculous things on the Web: a biting toddler, a Spartan identifying himself, an emotional man witnessing a rainbow2, a honey badger, etc.
I know I know. McKayla Maroney, you are not impressed at all about the Internet or memes. You can’t win them all.
With that, I am out. It’s peanut butter jelly time!