THROWBACK: THE HISTORY AND ORIGINS OF LOLCATS

 

If you’re not a fan of our furry friend the cat then perhaps you may have never even heard of a Lolcat. Well let’s get you up to speed. A Lolcat is a term given to one of the latest cat-based crazes on the internet, a more feline based version of the more traditional image meme. This involves the posting and sharing of an image of a cat typically with block white text at the top and the bottom of the image often parodying, commenting or joking about the image in question. The popularity of cats on the internet is quite astonishing and now that has even lead to the introduction of cat-based slot games such as Cute Kitty Cabana Slot.

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So now you know what you’re dealing with where exactly did this online cat craze originate from? You are most likely aware, whether you like cats or not, that the web at the moment is awash with cat pictures and videos and probably has been as far back as you can remember. The term itself apparently came about as far back as 2005 when images were featured on Caturday.com. A year later a domain actually called LOLcats.com was registered. The LOL part obviously representing the acronym for laughing out loud or laugh out loud, a common piece of internet slang. These sites themselves were a haven for users and cat fans to come together and share humorous cat memes.

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Over time this expanded in popularity due to the frequent way in which the images were shared and mentioned on other bigger websites and message boards around the web. But it wasn’t until 2007 when the now famous “I CAN HAZ CHEEZBURGER?” image was posted up on the ‘Something Awful’ website that this concept really took on a life of its own. It was when the term was featured in Time magazine that it managed to gain plenty of national media attention.

 

But incredibly the mid-00’s internet culture may not be necessarily credited with creating the concept whatsoever. It seems that British photographer Harry Pointer is commonly known to have put together the first collection of cat memes thanks to his carte de visite series. The small postcard pictures would feature cats in funny positions or situations and would be accompanied with a small line of comical text. But these photographs not only preceded the 2000’s but they came before the start of the 20th Century. Yes that’s right, the first images that we can truly describe as a Lolcat happened way back in the early 1870’s.

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