Schrute Facts

Schrute Facts

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About

Schrute Facts is an image macro series inspired by Dwight Schrute, a character from the American version of the TV sitcom The Office. The overlaid text typically begins with an idiom or common belief, followed by a refutation of the aforementioned idiom based on a rationalist interpretation similar to buzzkill humor.

Origin

Since the show’s U.S. debut in March 2005, Dwight Schrute[12] (played by actor Rainn Wilson[7]) has become a breakout character for being a know-it-all with poor social skills and a worldview that can be best characterized as realist and survivalist. In the episodes, Schrute often corrects others’ idiomatic statements by deeming them false and rebutting with real-life facts (shown below, left). Though he does not always say the word “false,” Schrute’s distinct interpretation of English colloquialisms has been noted since the pilot season[18] and parodied by character Jim Halpert in a cold open of an episode during the show’s third season (shown below, right).



While image macros using Dwight Schrute’s likeness paired with actual quotes from the show appeared as early as February 2011 on FunnyJunk[5], the first image macro using the “Fact” format was created via Quickmeme[1] and uploaded to Reddit[2] on April 15th, 2011, where it recieved 1334 up votes. The caption featured Schrute’s rebuttal to the lyrics of Beatles’ 1967 song “All You Need is Love” by asserting that a person only needs water and food to survive.



Spread

In the following days, several other instances of Schrute Facts appeared in the comments of the initial Reddit post. A single topic Tumblr[8] was created on April 19th, but has evolved into a personal blog as of September 2012. The blog Runt of the Web[4] posted a collection of the image macro series in a post titled “Dwight Schrute Knows Best” on July 19th. Over the next two months, additional images were shared on eBaum’s World[11], Uproxx[9], Buzzfeed.[14] In January 2012, a Facebook fan page[20] was started for Schrute Facts, but only gained 29 likes by September. Meanwhile, a Twitter feed[21] started in February has gained more than 8000 followers.




As of February 2012, there have been more than 300 Schrute Facts submitted to Reddit[19], more than 14,000 submissions to the the Quickmeme[3] page and approximately 280 submissions to the Memegenerator[10] page. There is also a Tumblr tag[13] for “Schrute Facts” under which several instances of the series can be found.

Notable Examples




Rainn Wilson’s Self-Tribute

In September 2012, actor Rainn Wilson appeared in a video for Malarious[22], a series of comedic shorts created by College Humor to raise money for the charity Malaria No More.[23] In the video, Wilson read a selection of inspirational quotes aloud before discrediting them in the manner of the image macro series. The video was shared on a variety of celebrity gossip and tech blogs including Mashable[24], Laughing Squid[25], Yahoo! News[26], Entertainment Weekly PopWatch[27] and Entertainment on TODAY.[28]



Search Interest

Search queries for “schrute facts” began prior to the creation of the image macro series in February 2010, which may have been sparked by a trivia game about Dwight Schrute on the website Sporcle.[6] Both “schrute facts” and “schrute meme” began rising in April 2011, the same month that the first image macro was published.

External References

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