Memepedia Wiki
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Memes are broadly defined as culturally transmitted information, or ideas and beliefs that can be spread from one organism, or group of organisms, to another. A key component to the meme concept is that the information is able to self-replicate, and in turn undergoes a type of natural selection, much like biological genes and viruses.

History[]

Origin[]

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The book cover of "The Selfish Gene" (30th anniversary version).

The word was coined by evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book The Selfish Gene. The book focused on the importance of self-replication in evolution, and pointed to the gene as the unit of biological information that is subject to selection pressures. He postulated that perhaps not only biological information undergoes natural selection, and that anything that is capable of replicating itself would also be susceptible to selection pressures, like ideas and beliefs. The word "meme" was used to label this type of self-replicating cultural information, and it was derived from the Greek word mimema, which translates to "something imitated".

Spread[]

With the commercialization of the internet in 1995, modern memes gradually became more strongly associated with internet memes. Internet memes are associated with media, catchphrases, and more general trends that spread throughout various outlets on the World Wide Web like chat clients, blogs, social networking sites, email, forums and image boards. They're often used to point out how trends online evolve and change over time, creating various new derivatives.

Russian anti-meme law[]

The Russian Anti-Meme Law refers to the Russian government’s ban on impersonating or sharing doctored image macros of public figures that are deemed out-of-context in relation to their personality or reputation in real life. The policy was introduced in early April 2015 as a direct result of a court decision in Moscow which ruled the unauthorized use of Russian singer Valeri Syutkin’s images as an internet meme to be an infringement of his privacy. However in other areas of the world, the ban showed a Streisand Effect as satire and memeification towards Russia’s President Vladimir Putin showed an increase.

#MemeGate[]

#MemeGate refers to an online feud between YouTubers LeafyIsHere and Ethan Klein of h3h3productions starting in late March 2016. The primary causes of the disagreement centered on accusations that LeafyIsHere cyberbullyied young and disabled vloggers and that Klein was hypocritical and preached sanctimonious views.

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