Meme <ul><li>Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene (1976) </li></ul><ul><li>A meme is a unit of social information. </li></u...
Meme family tree of LOLcats <ul><li>Meme </li></ul><ul><li>Internet meme </li></ul><ul><li>Image macro </li></ul><ul><li>L...
Image macro internet memes <ul><li>Originated and/or originally spread through and handful of forums and imageboards. </li...
Where do internet memes originate? <ul><li>1999 SomethingAwful.com – All Your Base meme, original CHEEZEBURGER LOLcat. </l...
Image macros predating LOLcats:
“ Fail” is a popular meme with image macros. Memes are remixed.
Another popular internet meme is the motivational poster
Funny cat pictures have been around since cameras were first invented
This cat meme first appeared in 2002
2003 “happy cat” and “stalker cat” first appear on the internet without text
Caturday popularity lead to the spread of LOLcats meme on internet forums: <ul><li>Early 2005 Caturday is started on 4Chan...
Examples of early LOLcats
More examples of early LOLcats
LOLcats incorporate previous memes <ul><li>“ I’m in your base, killing </li></ul><ul><li>your dudes” </li></ul><ul><li>Mot...
Popular catchphrases for LOLcats <ul><li>FAIL/EPIC FAIL </li></ul><ul><li>Do not want </li></ul><ul><li>X is not amused </...
LOLspeak added to LOLcat popularity <ul><li>Pre-2005 1337speak was the dominate internet patois. </li></ul><ul><li>Post-20...
LOLcat humor often works on several levels: <ul><li>The first level is the funny cat photo. </li></ul><ul><li>The second l...
The internet’s remix culture at work
 
Memes can break free of the internet
Factors leading to LOLcat popularity <ul><li>Funny cats have near universal appeal. </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to assimilat...
 
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LOLcats in Popular Culture: A Historical Perspective

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LOLcats in Popular Culture: A Historical Perspective

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  2. Meme <ul><li>Richard Dawkins in The Selfish Gene (1976) </li></ul><ul><li>A meme is a unit of social information. </li></ul><ul><li>Ideas or beliefs that are transmitted from one person or group of people to another. </li></ul><ul><li>Like biological genes, memes are subject to natural selection. </li></ul><ul><li>Some memes fail to propagate. Other spread and mutate. </li></ul>
  3. Meme family tree of LOLcats <ul><li>Meme </li></ul><ul><li>Internet meme </li></ul><ul><li>Image macro </li></ul><ul><li>LOLcat </li></ul>
  4. Image macro internet memes <ul><li>Originated and/or originally spread through and handful of forums and imageboards. </li></ul><ul><li>Over the span of several years, images spread to many more online forums. </li></ul><ul><li>Sites dedicated to popular image macros began to appear (such as failblog.com) </li></ul><ul><li>Social media increased volume and speed at which image macros were shared. </li></ul>
  5. Where do internet memes originate? <ul><li>1999 SomethingAwful.com – All Your Base meme, original CHEEZEBURGER LOLcat. </li></ul><ul><li>1999 Fark.com – NSFW meme. </li></ul><ul><li>2003 4chan.com – Rickroll meme, Anonymous hacktivist group, many more. </li></ul><ul><li>2003 YTMND.com (You’re the man now dog). </li></ul>
  6. Image macros predating LOLcats:
  7. “ Fail” is a popular meme with image macros. Memes are remixed.
  8. Another popular internet meme is the motivational poster
  9. Funny cat pictures have been around since cameras were first invented
  10. This cat meme first appeared in 2002
  11. 2003 “happy cat” and “stalker cat” first appear on the internet without text
  12. Caturday popularity lead to the spread of LOLcats meme on internet forums: <ul><li>Early 2005 Caturday is started on 4Chan </li></ul><ul><li>By April Caturday.com is registered </li></ul><ul><li>Caturday threads first appear on Fark.com </li></ul><ul><li>Nov 2005 Caturdayblog.blogspot.com appears </li></ul><ul><li>June 2006 - LOLcats.com registered </li></ul><ul><li>January 2007 - I CAN HAZ CHEEZBURGER.com is registered. 2007 becomes year of LOLcats. </li></ul>
  13. Examples of early LOLcats
  14. More examples of early LOLcats
  15. LOLcats incorporate previous memes <ul><li>“ I’m in your base, killing </li></ul><ul><li>your dudes” </li></ul><ul><li>Motivational poster: </li></ul>
  16. Popular catchphrases for LOLcats <ul><li>FAIL/EPIC FAIL </li></ul><ul><li>Do not want </li></ul><ul><li>X is not amused </li></ul><ul><li>x is serious business </li></ul><ul><li>Oh hai! </li></ul><ul><li>I can haz X </li></ul><ul><li>invisible X </li></ul><ul><li>I'm in your x, x-ing your x </li></ul>
  17. LOLspeak added to LOLcat popularity <ul><li>Pre-2005 1337speak was the dominate internet patois. </li></ul><ul><li>Post-2005 LOLspeak became a dominate internet patois. </li></ul><ul><li>LOLspeak increased </li></ul><ul><li>the power of the </li></ul><ul><li>LOLcat meme. </li></ul>
  18. LOLcat humor often works on several levels: <ul><li>The first level is the funny cat photo. </li></ul><ul><li>The second level references internet subculture, inside joke, or previous meme. </li></ul>
  19. The internet’s remix culture at work
  20.  
  21. Memes can break free of the internet
  22. Factors leading to LOLcat popularity <ul><li>Funny cats have near universal appeal. </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to assimilate other memes. </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple levels of humor. </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to be remixed and created by general users, endless supply of new content. </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to spread even faster via social media. </li></ul><ul><li>Slang language incorporated into meme - </li></ul><ul><li>as 1337speak died off, LOLspeak replaced it. </li></ul>
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