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Why Memes About Rebekah Vardy Could Be A Lot More Harmful Than You Think

Why Memes About Rebekah Vardy Could Be A Lot More Harmful Than You Think

“Becoming a meme is one of my biggest fears,” I joked to a friend recently. In 2020, this is not an irrational fear. I was speaking shortly after Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith had their now-infamous “entanglement” conversation on their family talk show Red Table Talk. After they discussed their marital issues and the nature of Pinkett-Smith’s relationship with musician August Alsina, a screen-grab of Smith’s pained face circulated online. Thousands of tweets later, Smith — one of the most successful actors on the planet — was inducted into the meme hall of fame. Admittedly I laughed, and something tells me Smith laughed about the silliness of it all too. Yet, as funny as it was, I still wouldn’t want it to happen to me. Which begs the question: when do memes stop being funny and start being harmful?

These days we use memes — humorous pictures, videos, and gifs sometimes accompanied by text — to say a lot without saying much at all. From Gemma Collins to Salt Bae, we all have a favourite. They’re an easy, digestible, and lazy way to participate in pop culture and, in the time of the coronavirus pandemic, memes frequently offer much-needed light relief.

Yet, to participate in meme culture is to understand that a picture of Spongebob could be used both in a tweet about a new reality TV show and a comment about the crisis in Syria. The widespread use of memes…

Memes Are Making Us Mean, But It Doesn’t Have To Be That Way

“Becoming a meme is one of my biggest fears,” I joked to a friend recently. In 2020, this is not an irrational fear. I was speaking shortly after Jada Pinkett-Smith and Will Smith had their now-infamous “entanglement” conversation on their family talk show Red Table Talk.



Why Memes About Rebekah Vardy Could Be A Lot More Harmful Than You Think

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