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“Tips Fedora” is an online expression used in mocking response to a statement of opinion thought to be held by a young adult male who probably wears fedora as a fashion accessory. The phrase refers to the gesture of tipping one’s hat as an expression of recognition or acknowledgement between two persons.
In February and March 2013, the phrase spread to the /a/ (Anime and Manga), /v/ (Video games) , /sp/ (Sports) and /tv/ (Television and Film) boards on 4chan. On September 15th, 2013, Tumblr user Nyehs made a post under the tag “tips fedora” about being friend zoned by a “succubus.” On October 13th, YouTuber archivemind uploaded a Source Filmmaker video in which the Heavy from the online first-person shooter game Team Fortress 2 tips a fedora (shown below, left). On October 20th, YouTuber The Cheesy Banana uploaded a video in which he performs a fedora tip (shown below, right).
On November 12th, Redditor radarmaxx submitted a photograph of a man tipping a fedora to the /r/cringepics subreddit (shown below), where it recieved over 1,800 up votes and 120 comments in the first two months. On December 23rd, the FedoraCoinaltcoin was launched, which are referred to as “TIPS.”
Many reaction faces had been made with the caption “tips fedora”, many of which feature a person tipping a fedora or other brimmed hat.
Jerry Messing’s Fedora Photo
One of the most well-known “fedora tipping” reaction images is based on a headshot of Jerry Messing, an American actor best known for portraying Pugsley Adams in the 1998 comedy film Addams Family Reunion, originally uploaded to his Facebook profile on May 1st, 2011 (shown below).
The earliest known association between Messing’s studio portrait and fedora-tipping was made on October 31st, 2013, when Redditor I Have2BrokenArms_AMA submitted the photo to the /r/circlejerk subreddit, gaining over 580 upvotes and 20 comments prior to being archived. On January 31st, 2014, the photo was reposted to the /r/pics subreddit, gathering more than 14,700 upvotes and 590 comments in three months. Since rising to prominence as the posterchild of neckbeards on Reddit, the model has been identified by as a Disney Channel child actor on more than one occasions and his photograph has been modified into a variety of animated GIFs and image macros accentuating the tipping gesture (shown below).