Forced memes are sites created with the explicit purpose of making a meme out of them. They are usually accompanied with some form of "get the word out" campaign to encourage other users to make sites in its style.
The YTMND forum community has been the most prolific presence behind forced memes and has, on occasion, pushed several invented memes to the front page, sometimes reaching the Top 15 Viewed YTMNDs list as well as the Top 5 Rated YTMNDs. As some forum members have explained, the unifying purpose of forum memes is not humor as much as the attempt to interfere with the meme-heavy business as usual on the front page.
Forum meme chronology
The following is a list of the earliest forum memes. Though other less-influential users attempted to create their own forum memes, most of these failed to catch the imagination of the forums and front pages alike.
The first of the forum memes, Mike Done, was created with the intention of taking an inside joke even the forum users did not get and thrusting it into the spotlight to confuse or annoy front-page users. Forum users began with and made their own variations. While the meme did not catch on with the front page, it was included in one of the earlier polished meme conglomerates, , which gave it some measure of mainstream respectability. Mike Done maintains a cult following with oldschool users and those in contact with them.
Tennis Man followed, using a picture of forums user MillionsV in tennis gear for a high school play, paired with Nightwish's "Ghost Love Score," and the text, "I'm serious about tennis." This meme also acheived little with the front page users, but was notable for turning "Ghost Love Score" into meme music.
For the full history of this meme, see Gay Fuel.
inkdrinker's ytmnd was the first forum meme to achieve mass acceptance. Users who have never been to the forums continue to make Gay Fuel sites to this day, though this could not have been acheived without the massive site blitz by other forums members.
For the full history of this meme, see Asiacopter.
Asiacopter was the second forum meme to reach a measure of mass acceptance, this time by accident. Sick to death of newer, younger forum users, inkdrinker gave them DrWorm. The stop-motion aspect would go on to inspire Butt racing.site to make a meme from, thinking the difficulty of animating a stop-motion, rotating picture would keep them busy before they ultimately gave up. Instead, Asiacopter took off with a more popular version by
Non-forum forced memes
Its proximity to YTMND, built-in fanbase and tight-knit community make the forums an ideal spot for launching forced memes. They can be launched, however, by other means. There have been attempts to create forced memes from various gaming forums and the main site, but with few exceptions, these have failed to catch on with the general audience of YTMND.
For the full history of this meme, see Lounge.
Lounge might be considered the first successful forced meme that did not originate on the forums. It was promoted by the promise of free 5 votes from the meme's originator MasterSitsu.
Forum memes as trickery
Another such forum meme is where users gather together at a certain time and start producing sites with sound and text, but no image. The purpose of this is to confuse the users who only look at the front page of ytmnd. They will think that there is something wrong with their computer, that YTMND is broken, etc. The forum members then up-vote the site by giving it 5's and they post such comments like 'hahahah this is the best ever!'. Most of the time, they combine loads of memes together in the title and some put a (refresh), indicating that once the page is loaded that the viewer must refresh the page to sync it all up. This trick worked better when YTMND was a smaller community where forum members were numerous enough to flood the "most recently created YTMNDs" list fast enough to maintain the illusion. A larger YTMND community, and the new requirement that users wait 15 minutes before creating a second site, have made this practical joke largely impossible now.
Other Forced Memes
There have been other forced memes that became popular or infamous with ytmnd:
- OBEY, a forced fad by 06'ers from the infamous "Price is LOL" forums, involving a picture of a man looking at various memes on a computer.
- Wicker Furniture/Buoys, an attempted forced meme by members of LUE from Gamefaqs involving a picutre of a Pepsi can and Coca-Cola can with the text "Those aren't buoys".
- "I SEE ELVIS!", a meme forced hours after the revealing of Dr-L337's identities.