The meaning of memes

What makes an image viral?
What makes an image 'viral'?

One weakness of the name ‘memeserver’ is that you have to spell it out a lot on the phone.

“Nemeserver?” or “mem-server?” are the two common ones but there are plenty more. Initially, I thought this pointed to a poor choice of name (or name …. FAIL! as one popular viral would have it). But on reflection, I’m always glad about it. Whenever someone doesn’t pronounce it properly, you can gently introduce the subject: “Do you know what a meme is?”

When I explain the concept, most people seem to find it a fascinating one. Either that, or they are really convincingly polite.

It fascinates me anyway. Here’s the BBC’s Rory Cellan Jones’ take on the subject. Here are some viral images that have worked along with an account of why they worked.

This site is claiming that the Susan Boyle video has already had over 127 million views and counting. And here’s that dancing cockatoo if you aren’t one of the 2,271,983 people who have already seen it. Here are the ‘Top 20 Viral Videos’

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