Tag Archives: memetics

Share: Is America Prepared For Meme Warfare?

Vice takes a look at how politically funded memes affected the U.S. Presidential election, and how that experience is changing future tactics in information warfare. Memes appear to function like the IEDs of information warfare. They are natural tools of an insurgency; great for blowing things up, but likely to sabotage the desired effects when… Read More »

Excerpt: Why Cultures Develop Memetic ‘Immune Systems’

From a blog post by Pablo Reyes Arellano, a professor from Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, touching on cultures that, while evolving, still protect themselves through rejection of other ways of seeing, thinking and acting. Modernity has accelerated development, expansion, new possibilities and substantially improved the quality of life in many ways. But, are the systems with… Read More »

Truth Vs. Trust

For most of the 20th century, mass media (newspapers, magazines, books; then broadcast news) was the “transmission vector” through which current public ideas spread. People shared a common basis of information, typically framed in a paradigm understood by the audience. I tend to call this idea the “shared front page” effect, as in “Did you… Read More »

Share: Richard Dawkins Explains The Word ‘Meme’ (Video)

From the video description: Today, the word “meme” is typically used to describe a funny photo with text that gets passed around online. But Richard Dawkins coined the term years before the World Wide Web even existed. Dawkins in a distinguished evolutionary biologist and writer. He has authored several books, the most recent being “Brief… Read More »

Share: CGP Grey: This Video Will Make You Angry (Video)

Video uses the term “thought germ” more than meme, but illustrates how emotion ties in as a vector in the spread of ideas – including the birth and escalation of emotion-fueled counter-memes. Reddit discussion thread about “This Video Will Make You Angry”: https://www.reddit.com/r/CGPGrey/comments/2yjs25/this_video_will_make_you_angry/ Related: “What Makes Online Content Viral?” By Jonah A. Berger & Katherine… Read More »

Share: Schich & Martino’s Charting Culture (Video)

From the video description: This animation distils hundreds of years of culture into just five minutes. A team of historians and scientists wanted to map cultural mobility, so they tracked the births and deaths of notable individuals like David, King of Israel, and Leonardo da Vinci, from 600 BC to the present day. Using them… Read More »

Excerpt: Memes Vs. Cultural Evolution

Excerpt from blog post by Peter Turchin, a professor of Biology and Anthropology in the University of Connecticut. Here he refutes playing too much on the analogy between memes and genes. The process of transmitting cultural traits is also quite different from that of gene replication. It can occur simply by observing and imitation, or… Read More »

Excerpt: Shifman’s Memes in a Digital World: Reconciling with a Conceptual Troublemaker

An article by Limor Shifman in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication Volume 18, Issue 3, pages 362–377, April 2013. Shifman works in the Department of Communication and Journalism, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, in Israel. Shiftman’s paper is a bit dense around defining the scope of “what is a meme” (in particular, the difference between… Read More »