When iMedia asked me to take up this topic, I had a couple of concerns. The first was that I would be treading the well-trodden path laid by hayseed comedian Jeff Foxworthy, whose "You might be a redneck if..." schtick has remained lodged in our cultural digestive tract like a stack of flapjacks for the last couple decades, and I have no desire to run afoul of what I imagine to be his army of suspender-stretching, drawling copyright attorneys. My second concern was that by voicing concern No. 1, I might be outing myself as a fan, by the same grade-school lunch-room logic that answers "This tastes like crap" with "How do you know what crap tastes like?"
But then I realized that this dilemma had conveniently spun up for me my first "You know"-ism, and now I'm off to the races:
Many of us never met a bandwagon we didn't want to jump on, and there is no surer bandwagon than a hot meme -- provided you manage to jump on before it arrives at Triteville or Beentheredonethatburg (see Microsoft's sad co-opting of the Double Rainbow Guy as Exhibit A). There are now talent agencies set up for the specific purpose of making sure everybody in the meme-to-sellout food chain -- including, presumably, the copyright lawyers -- get paid. And if you're enterprising enough to represent the fickle interests of Grumpy Cat in a boardroom full of Hollywood suits, then I say more power to you.
Should digital marketers be making such flagrant use of memes? I am compelled to answer in the form of a meme:
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