Announced by Google Senior Software Engineer Colin McMillen on his Google+ account, Google is adding the ability to create new Internet meme designs using photos that are uploaded to Google+. After the user drops a photo into the sharebox on the Google+ feed page, they can click the “Add text” button that’s located underneath the uploaded photo. This launches a new window that allows the user to type words on the photo at the top, middle or bottom of the picture. The font will automatically change in size based on the amount of text included on the photo and users can also choose left, right or center justification for each line of text.
The creation process is very similar to the popular Meme Generator site that’s frequently used by Reddit users. However, Google doesn’t provide any photo templates to get the user started, but instead chooses to rely on the creativity of the Google+ user to find and share interesting photos. With the new meme feature in place for all users, Google is likely looking to increase the amount of comment and sharing activity that occurs with user photos on Google+. The new meme creation tool is expected to roll out to all Google+ accounts over the next few days.
An Internet meme typically uses a popular picture, video or other form of media in addition to humorous misspellings of words. Memes are also used to bring attention to current events frequently. For instance, a recent outbreak of graphical meme’s spread around the Web after a terrible customer service experience was highly publicized on Penny Arcade. The “You Mad, Bro?” meme received negative attention during September 2011 regarding racism when a group of Ohio high schoolers held up the sign at a football game. Just a month prior to that, Michele Bachmann instantly got turned into a meme after an unflattering picture appeared on the cover of Newsweek.