How Social Media Saved the World

It cannot be understated that we are living through a history-making difficult time. Hundreds of thousands of people are falling victim to a global pandemic and everyone is else either staying home or acting brazenly stupid. It shouldn't be surprising, though, that one of the upshots of all of this is that there has been a rise in meme-making.

First defined by Richard Dawkins in 1976 as a cultural idea that takes on a life of its own and is passed down through generations much the same way that genes are, the word "meme" has itself taken on a life of its own to define pictures made and passed around on the Internet that often lampoon various aspects of life. I don't think I've seen any new memes in the past few days that weren't about the COVID-19 epidemic. But this isn't the first time a global catastrophe has been made fun of in what could be described as a "childish" fashion. In fact, one of the memes I've seen compared the uptick in Cor…

Green Onion: Local Man Uses Social Media to Update Friends on Progress and Quality of Day

LITTLEROCK, IL -- They wait with bated breath as they hit refresh on their Facebook feeds.

Friends of local man, Brian Talbot, have been begging for more information since he posted a message at 10:43 am saying "Today has been good so far. We'll see if that continues to be the case. My work load may or may not double."

Friends of Talbot say that concern for his wellbeing is what keeps them at their computers during the work day. "He always posts something like 'Today is good,'" one of his friends says, "Which makes me think, well, maybe there's a possibility of something going horribly awry. What else could be the point of that kind of post? It's got me on edge!"

Dr. Rand Larson, a psychologist with the Chicago Institute for Social Media, has suggested these kinds of updates are usually little more than a cry for attention. "When the average user posts this kind of update on social media, it suggests he has no friends in the immediate vicinity or available via text message to talk to, so he is, in a sense, calling out to anyone who will listen."

In Brian's case, there are at least four friends listening. And they want more.

"Will his day remain good?" they ask, "Or will it crumble into shambles after his workload overtakes his ability to cope and forces him to reach unhealthy stress levels?"

More on this story as Talbot continues to report in.