The idea that a single image is capable of generating so much discourse over such a large scale is amazing. Internet memes have become an indespensible part of the web and woven in our culture. For example, Advice Dog, as seen below, originated from a Mario fan-site, The Mushroom Kingdom and was created in 2006. It started with a picture of a dog’s head with a multicolored color wheel background behind it. From there, Advice Dog developed into many variations of memes.
As mentioned in the Lauri Greis article, “Studies of transformation are especially useful in tracking how images undergo change in ways unanticipated by the “original” image’s designer and spark unexpected consequences.” (344), Advice Dog shows how an image can be circulated and transform with space and time. Whether the text changes with the same image or the image changes with the same text, it contributes to a rhetorical collaboration.
According to Cohen and Kenny “to participate in the meme requires an understanding of the linguistic nature of the meme itself.” (89). This can be seen with Advice Dog in which it is typical to combine two completely unrelated pieces of advice together. The genuine good advice, given at the top, is usually followed by a bad or humorous advice given at the bottom. While the linguistic nature of the meme is culturally understood by the participants who create and post, each meme has its own identity and its own message.