Behind the memes

Behind the memes

April 27, 2020 0 By Taksa-on Wiboolsirikul

I am sure that everyone who travel in internet especially in Twitter has most likely saw memes or save one of them in your own smartphones.

When we talked about “memes” ,many people will think of a hilarious picture with that funny caption below them ,making you laugh non stop or the pic that you send to your friends to describe your feelings in that moment.

Yeah, it’s correct, that kind of meme you think of is one of the memes. But memes are not just that…

So let dig deeper on what’s meme together

Memes (pronounced as meem not ‘me-me’ or ‘meh-meh’) are from the ancient Greek word “mimema” ,which means imitated things. Then it was shortened to just “meme” to make it similar with the word “gene” in English.

Surprisingly, the word meme didn’t originate online. In fact, Richard Dawkins first used the word in his 1976 book named The Selfish Gene. The book described meme as an idea or behavior that spreads across people in a culture.

There are numerous memes that we used in our lives without realizing it like when we sing Happy birthday in your friend’s party or when you shaking other’s hand when you first met her or him. All those are memes that was passed down from generation to generation.

However, Memes have evolved into something much different than what Dawkins think of. When we talk about memes in nowadays, we usually refer the term to “internet memes”, which will be discussed in this blog.

Internet memes

An Internet meme is a cultural phenomenon spreading like a coronavirus, traveling from one person to another swiftly. It is used for feeling expression of people. One meme will contain of message from sender to receiver in any type of media. They can also help us to communicate ideas and share our thoughts and feelings in an efficient and creative ways.

More than half of current internet memes are transferred by teenager and post-teenagers. The reason why is that their lifestyles is like a car race in fast and furious movie. They enjoy sending other a message with “high speed” internet so sometimes we may see them comment or reply each other in pics rather that text. However, internet memes are now viral and the average of people age above teenager using memes are gradually rising.

What make meme a ”meme”

People may think of any image with catch phrase or what we can called in another word “image macros”. It’s true that some image macros are memes, but not all memes are image macros . Meme are not just a funny picture like many others think. Memes can be anything from images ,gif, or videos usually including a witty piece of text that readers can apply to various types of situations.

Memes have to contain some kind of “message” inside it. We used it as a tool to transfer message like a text that we send to our friend in Line application. But what make it different from other kind of message is memes are in form of “symbol”. When we talk about symbol, it mean that each people can perceive memes differently based on their experience and knowledge.

Hence, it is impossible that one meme can understand each “meme” in the same way. That is why memes are so like a prince charming of the international kingdom that people found it interesting and popular.

Why memes is popular so much?

There is literally an uncountable number of memes circulating the World Wide Web most commonly found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. With those online platform, it has become increasingly easy for memes to gain popularity and go viral overnight, with millions of daily visitors looking to them.

One thing that make memes are popular and viral is that memes are easy to digest. It is not a long article that contains of thousand words ,we can understand what sender want to share with us through one visual of memes.

It also benefit sender that they just only need to share one picture in social media than typing a long essay to make other people understand what you trying to communicate.

Moreover, it create a sense of inter-community that connect people from different groups together because a joke is something that easily approach to people more than serious or informative stuff.

Memes and laughing

If we describe internet memes as a person, memes would be the one who always make people around them full of joy and laugh. We always text lol right after someone sending us a meme or Click the button “share” when we found that meme make you laugh.

Memes and humor always go together like peanut butter and jelly. Below here is the factor that memes use to gain snigger from people.

Quotes

Catchphrases are important as visual things like images or gif in order to make memes popular. Sometimes just a visual is not enough to make people get what you trying to tell. The good example of this are “Bomboclaat”.

Bomboclaat is the phenomenon that is very trendy on Twitter. The term came from a slang in Jamaica that use it as (impolite) interjection. It become very well known in Twitter when users start to provide two different picture to let other user “quote” or share with their own creative captions.

This show how creative of person when it comes to “caption this”. Some people can make a joke from one picture differently based on their idea and experience. Comedy are subjective

Close to home

Popular memes often relate to what we familiar with in our lives. The more people know about it ,the more that meme will go viral on internet. Below here you can see that we all know the name “William Shakespeare” so it is easier to make fun rather than other names. And the next one, we found it funny because in these quarantine time we have to wash our hands a lot so it is something we familiar with.

Right time Right place

Some memes depend on occasion. To illustrate, in this current coronavirus crisis, there are some situation that are new to many people like online study ,social distancing and working from home. Every jokes has its perfect time to launched. Like those memes below, if I provided it before the crisis, who will laugh about this? Obviously, no one!

Those three Memes are in COVID19 crisis that many people have to study and work from home.

Finally don’t forget about cats!

It is undeniable that cats rule the world right now. I cannot find any reason to explain to you why everything cat do is trendy, I really can’t. So be it

Wait a minute…

Nevertheless, The first trending meme right now did not guarantee that it will always be remembered. If some viral meme are being seen too much ,it can lead to “the death of memes” that memes are no longer funny anymore because it too boredom. What we can do is keep improving our jokes for memes to enlonger their lives.

Welcome to the end

Memes that we familiar with have evolved from a joke to a significant culture in cyber world. It is used for sending a message in both direct and indirect way. Furthermore, It hugely shape how the youth, and the whole internet user population for that matter, live their lives. I , as the writer hope you , the audience to enjoy and see the another side stories of memes that you never knew before. So please, after you finished my blog, sit back ,embrace memes and may be share your favorite on comment box. #memetime !

References

  • https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2019/10/29/bomboclaat-meaning-definition-twitter-trend-social-media/
  • https://www.popbuzz.com/internet/viral/bomboclaat-meaning-definition-twitter-pronounce/
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meme
  • https://www.digitaltrends.com/computing/what-is-a-meme/
  • https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/what-is-a-meme-examples/
  • https://youtu.be/9lQhvayXvew
  • https://youtu.be/bYJZA86dPEo
  • https://pantip.com/topic/37578764
  • https://medium.com/artisan-digital-agency/มีมคืออะไร-ทำไมถึงนิยมขนาดนี้-94291c604a42
  • https://www.mangozero.com/what-is-a-meme/
  • https://teen.mthai.com/variety/154737.html
  • https://mgronline.com/marsmag/detail/9550000156931