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Pop Loser No. 102

by Tyler Hellard


The Story of the Internet, as Told by Know Your Meme

There was a time that whenever a meme popped up on the web, I just got it. That time is long over and more often these things bleed into my feeds and I don't have the first fucking clue what they are referencing. Know Your Meme is invaluable in this capacity. 

A decade deep, Know Your Meme remains an impartial observer of that amorality, one that functions not just as a time capsule, but as a vector for the viral spread of its subjects. The jokes it catalogs leech from platform to platform and get bigger once the site’s editors write about and codify them; sometimes they spiral out of control. Know Your Meme is a huge accomplishment and a public service, but the internet has changed dramatically in the last 10 years — and in the last two years and even in the last week — and this anniversary is as much a chance to look forward at the future of internet culture, queasy and disoriented, as it is to look back.


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