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Meme Discussion

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New Media Literacy

Meme Discussion Question:

“The biggest reason why we share a meme”, explains Armand Valdes in a Mashable video on virality, “is because it connects to us emotionally.” Do you agree/disagree with this statement? If we consider memes to be on par with other cultural texts (film, music, art, etc), how might we describe the cultural value of a meme? Do memes reflect culture at large? How? Feel free to use examples (of memes and other viral media) to support your response.

Personal Opinion:

I agree with Armand Valdes, that memes connect us emotionally. From this week's material I learned that Facebook and Twitter are the last few social sites that receive memes which have originally made it to Reddit and Buzzfeed first. Having used Facebook periodically, I've noticed that memes are used for various things, it emotionally expresses anger, struggles, moods, stereotypes, relationships, happiness, enjoyment, and influences humour. Most of the time, we understand the reference of the meme because we all feel the same way and can relate to it instantly. That's what makes it amusing. Sometimes memes don't even have words and yet deliver the same message. For example, animal's face expression grabs the best appearances. For instance, when someone makes a silly status, I upload the awkward seal meme. This meme represents an awkward reaction and shows exactly how I feel about the post.

Cultural values of memes come directly from intertextuality and templatability. The intertextuality of a meme is to express emotional concerns from two different aspects; the image and the text. This ties in with templatability, which becomes important since films, music and arts are used as a reference for the meme. Cultural values in memes are often represented as an opinion towards a specific topic, question, theme or a video. However I do feel that memes…...

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