In my last post I showed you a picture from the “Advice Puppy” popular blog, where a picture of a puppy shares some hilarious, ridiculous advice. These types of images are called memes, which is defined in Wikipedia as a unit of cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena. Obviously, this would be a visual, comedic form of a meme. What my discussion point with this blog post is, however, is due to the power of the Internet and how it can do some unexpected things.
Remember the Simpson’s episode, where homer finds a picture of himself on a Japanese advert? This similar occurrence is actually happening through the Internet platform, where users are discovering images of themselves, manipulated or not, floating around the internet without knowing how it actually happened!
Today, I came across a website where a father was explaining how he found a picture of his son that he had posted online a while ago floating around the internet. However, his son had actually become a popular meme, like the advice puppy. Here’s the picture that was posted and the meme generated from it:
This meme was in fact so popular that they even have a “Generate your own Baby saying something” application HERE. Oh, but it doesn’t stop there…they even made a sculpture out of him.
The funny thing is, all it required for the father to find all of this out was for him to simply Google his own name. So, yes, I tried that. I found some interesting things, nothing as serious as this, BUT what I did find was quite interesting. When I Googled my stepdad’s name, it turns out he is featured on a travel website!
Yes, that is a picture of him running on the beach. Yes, that is a supposed “quote” from him saying, “There’s nothing like feeling like a kid again on the Great Ocean Roads beaches”. No, he had no idea that this was up here until we Googled his name. So how did it get up there? Easy! My mum had entered a competition, where you have to upload a happy snap and say something in under 25 words or less (or something along those lines). Little did she know that at the same time she was agreeing to the fact that the website now has ownership of the photo and can do whatever they want with it!
So the whole point here is that the Internet is an amazing place, but it has an uneasy side to it, where you could possibly find yourself advertising some travel website and you didn’t even know! Take some advice from the advice puppy: Don’t post pictures of yourself doing embarrassing things online, because someone could possibly use them for something!