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McMike
11-28-2009, 09:46 PM
Memes are the basic building blocks of our minds and culture, in the same way that genes are the basic building blocks of biological life.

Check this site out and think what paterns you've inherited from your parents and culture.

http://www.memecentral.com/

The question is, can we control them or are we simply programmed to follow them?

Captain Blight
11-28-2009, 09:55 PM
We are being continually programmed and reprogrammed--virally, memetically-- to ensure the continuation of the meme.

I really think that this is a useful and interesting concept. So many ideas spread as virii do, and religion is a particularly apt example. So many people never question what we're taught, or how we were taught it.

Keith Wilson
11-28-2009, 09:59 PM
The question is, can we control them or are we simply programmed to follow them?The answer is yes. ;)

ShagRock
11-28-2009, 10:08 PM
The answer is yes. ;)

Weak answer..elaborate please.

McMike
11-28-2009, 10:12 PM
Honestly I wish I could turn them off selectively. I’d like to be able to approach life much like how I would perceive a Buddhist Monk would. I’d love to not react to just about everything, fear is helpful but not all the time.

Captain Blight
11-28-2009, 10:17 PM
Church of the Virus (links through the page you gave) looks like a good place to start. Reading Richard Dawkins is another good move.

Keith Wilson
11-28-2009, 10:25 PM
Sometimes we can control them, sometimes we can make up new ones, sometimes we just let them operate. They aren't necessarily bad, though. Most of the really common ones are very very useful, that's why they get replicated the most.

Highly sucessful memes, a semi-random selection:
- Cooked food.
- Agriculture
- Mortise-and-tenon joints
- Democracy
- Money
- Rope
- Antibiotics
- Writing
- Birth control
- Plywood
- Beer

ShagRock
11-28-2009, 10:37 PM
How did democracy get lumped in with beer and turnips?

2MeterTroll
11-28-2009, 10:44 PM
I would argue that the memes for tangible things are somewhat diffrent then those for intangibles.

Patriotism, religion, morals, ethics, social status, beauty, Are rather specialized to social interaction. Advertisers know this and work those memes that are malleable by surrounding the person in variations or reinforcing specifics.
I suggest you try the experiment Erica and i tried . we started to collect democrat and republican papers. then we took the memes from our friends that hold these beliefs and simply went down the columns marking off the memes that popped up. since we had a few years of papers it was easy to see when the efforts to change the meme where started and how successfully they became entrenched.

the amount manipulation by the media is astounding. and in a very short time you can have a whole new meme as long as it grows out of an old one.

New memes appearing whole cloth are rare in the socialsphere but somewhat common in the physical realm.

McMike
11-29-2009, 04:52 PM
Cell phones are a really fascinating one. The concept that we need to be in touch 24/7 is an amazing phenomenon. Now they have me wearing this thing for fear that my kid will have a hangnail while I’m on my way home from work. But wait, I get to pay $40 per month for the privilege of carrying around this crappy hunk of plastic. NOW they have my kids thinking they need one too. Do you realize the rift this has created in my family? I won’t let my kids get one and all of the sudden I’m the bad guy who’s endangering my family because my 11 year-old son can’t send lols to his friend from the dinner table . . . Even my in-laws think I’m being a prick!!! $120 dollars a month for the off chance my kid won’t be able to find me at home or at work!!! How’s that for marketing?

Paul Girouard
11-29-2009, 04:55 PM
Even my in-laws think I’m being a prick!!!



Lot of that going around these days :D

McMike
11-29-2009, 05:00 PM
Lot of that going around these days :D

Ok, I’m willing to admit that I left myself wide open for that if you’re willing to admit you didn’t need to go there.:p

Pugwash
11-29-2009, 05:02 PM
Even my in-laws think I’m being a prick!!!

That one's been around loooooong before cell phones.

:)

Paul Girouard
11-29-2009, 05:15 PM
Ok, I’m willing to admit that I left myself wide open for that if you’re willing to admit you didn’t need to go there.



Ah ,,,,,,,,, NO. I generally "go there" if the gate is wide open:D

C. Ross
11-29-2009, 05:32 PM
Interesting stuff. So I tried to come up with a list of endangered memes in US culture (the culture I know best) which used to be legal and/or commonplace.
Seems to be some evidence we can remove them.
(Note: I am not saying they aren't still in circulation elsewhere, or that some of them haven't mutated into more benign forms.)

Slavery (extinct except for criminal kidnappings)
Women as property
Duels
Dowries
Marriage between cousins

What else?

McMike
11-29-2009, 05:37 PM
gender roles

purri
11-29-2009, 07:25 PM
thrift

peter radclyffe
11-30-2009, 12:20 AM
Honestly I wish I could turn them off selectively. I’d like to be able to approach life much like how I would perceive a Buddhist Monk would. I’d love to not react to just about everything, fear is helpful but not all the time.

yes it can be hard to find a balance between behaving like rambo & a frog in a blender

ishmael
11-30-2009, 12:59 AM
Read "Symbols of Transformation," Jung.

Popeye
11-30-2009, 08:14 AM
i know a guy who wears a shirt and walks around a lot

just another victim of a viral meme

Bruce Taylor
11-30-2009, 09:15 AM
A handy database that tracks the fortunes of internet memes: Know Your Meme (http://knowyourmeme.com/)

Search a common meme, like the phrase It's over 9000, (http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/its-over-9000) and the site will even draw you a graph (based on Google Insights) showing the spread of the pandemic.

Or you could just go to 4chan and watch the little memes being born. ;)

Popeye
11-30-2009, 09:21 AM
alas , were there no oxygen , there would be no memes

methinks hydrogen bonding is the real culprit

Bruce Taylor
11-30-2009, 09:31 AM
alas , were there no oxygen , there would be no memes

That thing about the guy walking around in a shirt...did that come from you? You've used it before ("You remember that guy...used to wear a shirt, walked around a lot," or something close to that). It stuck in my mind, for some reason (sticky place, my so-called mind), and I've repeated it in conversation, more than once, without attribution. Don't be surprised if it gets back to you, one of these days.

Popeye
11-30-2009, 09:49 AM
Don't be surprised if it gets back to you, one of these days.

two dimensional characters hold no surprises for me these days

carry on

L.W. Baxter
11-30-2009, 10:08 AM
A handy database that tracks the fortunes of internet memes: Know Your Meme (http://knowyourmeme.com/)...

It appears I haven't been using the internet correctly. I haven't been exposed to most of the "internet memes" on that site. Is it possible that I am hopelessly out of touch with pop culture? The horror!

Keith Wilson
11-30-2009, 11:35 AM
So I tried to come up with a list of endangered memes in US culture which used to be legal and/or commonplace. Seems to be some evidence we can remove them. (Note: I am not saying they aren't still in circulation elsewhere, or that some of them haven't mutated into more benign forms.)

Slavery (extinct except for criminal kidnappings)
Women as property
Duels
Dowries
Marriage between cousins

What else? Not all extinct but much diminished:

Miscegenation (the idea that there's something inherently wrong with marriages between people of different skin colors)
De jure segregation.
Unions as a criminal conspiracy in restraint of trade.
Pellagra as a hereditary disease.
Chewing tobacco (at least in urban areas).
Women shouldn't vote or own property.
Women are inherently more pure and virtuous than men.

Bruce Taylor
11-30-2009, 11:47 AM
It appears I haven't been using the internet correctly. I haven't been exposed to most of the "internet memes" on that site. Is it possible that I am hopelessly out of touch with pop culture? The horror!

How many adolescent kids live in your home? ;)

You've been exposed to 'em, you just didn't know what you were looking at. :D

Here in this forum, we often see the phrase "Pics or didn't happen." That meme (which might have drifted to WBF from Sailing Anarchy) has been floating around for a while, but really took off in mid-2007: Pics, or it-didn't happen. (http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/pics-or-it-didnt-happen)

Heck, I found that "Know your meme" site after somebody posted "Pedo Bear" here, a couple of weeks ago (photoshopped over Sarkozy's body in that much-circulated photo of Obama ogling a young woman's butt.