Philosorapt

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Posted under: Digital Natives 17th of November, 2012

As a teenager, having grown up with a computer and living in an era of ever-improving technology, I’ve noticed the impact that ideas generated on the internet have had on us, teenagers, and our lives. Due to the internet’s ever-present role in our daily routine, school and work, it’s interesting to note how the times have changed. It may be hard to explain to the presumably older audiences possibly reading this, but let me tell you from a 16-year-old’s perspective, it is weird. For example, memes. I don’t mean memes as in ‘oh look a cat in a funny position with a funny caption’, I mean memes as in the ones produced by memegenerator.com.

As an example, I’ll explain ‘Philosoraptor’. Philosoraptor is an image of a velociraptor with its claw placed near its chin, as if scratching it in thought. This image is used with accompanying text to ponder mundane mysteries. Here are some of the most popular ones:

 

Philosoraptor and other popular memes (Good Guy Greg, First World Problems, Overly Attached Girlfriend) are often seen in sharing websites like reddit, imgur or 9gag, where users are able to upload their own creations or link to previously main ones. And like all things on the internet, it’s inevitable that one of your facebook ‘friends’ are going to steal it, and upload it on their account.

It’s not this routine stealing of content that has me interested though, oh no. It’s the fact that this is considered the norm nowadays. A facebook group you liked back in 2010 will clog up your newsfeed with these images, desperate to please and desperate to be liked by more people. Considering these images didn’t really come into public attention until recently, it’s strange to see friends from school embracing, and even understanding how these memes work.

For me, being part of the more nerdy community in my years of primary school, having these relatively geeky ideas become socially acceptable is a welcome surprise. I suppose that part of it is our generation’s refusal to conform to stereotypes, but all I can hope is that this trend will continue. Accepting and adapting to change are incredibly important skills for the modern day teenager, and with any luck, these traits will carry on to the next generation.


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