Alright, so I’m guessing most of you are wondering just what the hell that video was about and why am I showing it you…..don’t worry, on some level I myself am wondering the same thing.
We are not here to question, or at least, I’m not. No! I am here to make clear the unclear, give sense to the senseless and generally just make the weirdness of the internet a little less weird!
So getting back to on point, the video above I so shamelessly exposed you all to is the introduction to a 1989 Japanese arcade game called “Zero Wing” that would eventually be ported, with questionable translations, to North America in the early 90’s. Of course, it would not be until 1999 (after people actually had access to the internet) that the game, or rather, the games introduction dialogue would go viral and be immortalized in the annexes of the internet forever. With some of its more ridiculous quotes going on to become extremely popular memes:
or hell….why not let this professional lab-coat clad gentleman explain?
Well, with that out of the way I guess I finally tackle just what an internet meme is huh? Well, to keep things simple (since there isn’t really a complicated way of explaining it) an internet meme is an “idea” (picture, video, quote, etc) that finds some kind of traction in a community on the internet where users then propagate it by submitting it to other users in “generally” unique or funny ways. This entire process can take anywhere from days to hours to occur, and it is not uncommon for some of the more popular memes, such as: lolcatz, demotivational posters or advice animals, to meteorically rise to the forefront of the internet almost instantly.
Memes have also come to play a fairly significant role in defining internet culture, with many of the the more popular one’s evolving (I use the word evolving here because the entire process of a meme catching fire and growing in popularity is generally a very organic process with the original poster/OP likely never intending for their submission to take on a life of its own) to fit into relevant or pressing issues affecting the community.
In fact, memes have also evolved into a means for normal everyday netizens to express their personal feelings through images, generally in the form of: advice animals, demotivational posters or rage comics.
Internet memes have also had affects on peoples’ lives outside of the internet, with a couple examples being Scumbag Steve, College Freshman or the more recent Ridiculously Photogenic Guy:
All of whom have become aware of their online fame to some extent and have had their lives changed for it.
Now, I realize that my explanations may have left some confused and others wishing they had never read this post at all, but I felt that is are to stand any chance at surviving on the internet we should probably learn about the culture, and memes are the back bone of it.
If however, on the off-chance that you did find this post interesting and would like to dig deeper into the bizarre phenomenon that is the “internet meme” I would like to point you towards http://knowyourmeme.com/ . A site chalk full of all the wonderful information about the internet you were probably better off not knowing.
And with that I conclude my second post, but leave you one of my personal favorite memes right now: