If you talk to someone about memes, they’ll think that you’re very nice with your Vin Diesel or other meme bullshit, but maybe you should grow up one day. He doesn’t even imagine that memes can have a much greater reach than a simple image that makes you smile. Sometimes memes go beyond the scope of the joke and come to interfere with politics, the economy, even History. YEAH BUDDY.
1. Pépé the Frog has become a symbol of the extreme right
Originally, this meme was completely neutral, without any political connotation. It was a simple, ugly cartoon-like frog that you could use in a million different ways (at least). And then things got out of hand during Donald Trump’s campaign for the 2016 US presidential elections. His supporters and various far-right American groups took over Pepe the Frog to spread their hate speech, and the meme has been associated with these folks ever since. Its creator, Matt Furie, is simply disgusted that his baby was used for this and has already filed a complaint against certain groups. It’s ugly.
2. Images of Winnie the Pooh are banned in China since the resemblance between Xi Jinping and the Pooh was noted
In 2013, Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Barack Obama in the States, and some smart guys pulled out an image of Winnie the Pooh that looked suspiciously like the two walking statesmen. Obama didn’t care, but Xi Jinping made him moderately laugh. In response, he simply banned Winnie The Pooh images in China. The guy has ZERO HUMOR. But does that surprise us? Not that much honestly.
3. When the Doge became a currency
Doge is one of the first huge internet memes. The little shiba dog with his sideways gaze has been seen in hundreds of thousands of different scenarios, and he alone represents a certain idea of the free Internet. But where he began to change history was when it was made into a cryptocurrency in 2013, the Dogecoin, supported among others by Elon Musk, and this currency saw its value multiply by more than 100 in a few years. It’s just crazy.
4. The Drake meme is now used in all protests
The meme with the head of Drake had no original political purpose: from two screenshots taken from the Hotline Bling clip, we created one of the most used memes of recent years. But the template was so easy to use that it inspired a lot of people, including protesters who took it up to fight the powers that be. On the placards of events, in addition to the usual messages, we now have the same Hotline Bling repeated in all sauces, and we must admit that it is always quite funny.
5. The “This is fine” meme sparked a fight between Republicans and Democrats in the United States
This meme, you’ve probably seen it before. It is taken from a comic by KC Green and represents a dog in the middle of the flames which says: “All is well”. It is often used in politics to make fun of a situation where everything goes wrong and where we try to blindly convince ourselves that everything is fine. This is how the Republicans used the meme in 2016 against Hillary Clinton, but the Democrats countered in a big way. They directly asked KC Green, the author of the original meme, to redraw the scene with an elephant (the symbol of the Republicans) in the middle of the flames. Memes change history, and history changes memes.
6. When Disaster Girl became a work of art
If you don’t understand anything about NFT, take a look at our top of the most expensive works of art sold, we explain everything to you. If you’re lazy, here’s an even faster version: NFTs allow you to sell and acquire virtual works. That’s how the Disaster Girl meme, depicting a little girl with a creepy smile in front of a burning house, was put up for sale. And he was not given up for a pittance, no. It was sold for over $400,000. You realize ? An image that everyone has been using freely for years has been bought for the price of a master painting, and the craziest thing is that it doesn’t even stop us from continuing to make memes of it. It’s crazy.
7. And Nyan Cat did even better
The psychedelic cat and its horrible music, one of the most WTF and famous memes in the history of the web, has also been sold in NFT for the modest sum of $500,000. Half a million dollars for something we wouldn’t even hang in our living room. Memes drove us crazy.
8. Michael Bloomberg hired people to create memes about him.
Michael Bloomberg participated in the Democratic primaries for the 2020 presidential election, and one of his tactics for looking cool to the public was quite original. He hired a box to create memes for him. And he did not hire just anyone, since he offered the services of Jerry Media, the agency behind the Fyre Festival, the festival that went wrong. In the end, it didn’t work out for Bloomberg either as he withdrew from the primary after getting an insufficient score. At the same time, you don’t pay someone to make memes about yourself, that’s not how life works.