Internet memes have been a vital part of the online experience for essentially as long as the internet has existed. Memes as a whole are difficult to describe to the unfamiliar, but formally they are an idea, behavior, or style that spreads by means of imitation from person to person within a culture—often with the aim of conveying a particular phenomenon, theme, or meaning represented by the meme.
Earlier internet users may remember sharing comics or images they found online by sending them on through E-mails or blog comments. Today’s internet users predominantly use social media to disseminate memes. With social media, memes have become a vital source of creative personal expression, using familiar content (often with some degree of humor, though the humor is subjective to the creator and viewer) to succinctly address the human experience at any point in time.
Now that I’ve very formally described internet memes, let’s get to the fun part and make one! In this period of quarantine, a vast abundance of internet memes have been created in response.
Friend of the Museum, John Varley, created a few memes using images from our collection:
Now it’s your turn! Show us how you would use one of these photos to express your experience in quarantine! Just copy any one of these images and use any basic photo editing software you might have (we used the default Microsoft Paint 3D to create our memes).
Memes are all about the message and the quality of the content is entirely up to the creator.
Please note: Any memes shared with us will be saved as documentation for future use by historians to analyze this time period we are living through.
Rules for the #memeseum Challenge:
1) Don’t be rude!
As a public institution devoted to representation of our community, we will reject any content that includes discriminatory, offensive, or obscene language/images. This is supposed to be fun!
2) Share with us!
Post your meme in the comments section of this blog or go on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, tag the Cayuga Museum and add these hashtags to your post: #memeseum #musuemfromhome #museumathome #nysmuseums #SupportCayuga #MuseumInExile
Making a Meme Walkthrough (using Paint 3D):
Step 1) Take one of the images above and save it to your computer
Step 2) Open Paint 3D and click “New”
Step 3) Click Menu and “Browse Files” to find your saved meme image
Step 4) Add a text box and adjust the formatting the way you like it. Note: Paint 3D text does not allow corrections once you click outside of the text box
Step 5) Save your meme and share it with the world!