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“Who’s awesome? You’re awesome!” (Spanish: “Sos Groso Sabelo”) is a catchphrase used in image macros wherein the subject is pointing at the camera while smiling, and sometimes winking. They are typically used to cheer up or compliment others in random act of kindness.
The meme began in September 2004 with the launch of an Argentinian website called SosGroso.com.ar, which featured a picture of American TV actor Don Johnson smugly pointing at the camera with a winky smile and the caption that read “Sos groso, sabelo!” In Argentinian dialect of Spanish, the phrase can be literally interpreted as “You’re awesome! Know it!”
Created by two college students Diego and Federico Marino, the site received an unexpectedly high volume of traffic, leading the visitors to send their own “sos groso” pictures to be featured on the homepage. Though circumstantial, it is widely held as true that the meme inspired the creation of the English equivalent “Who’s awesome? You’re awesome!” macro series.
Even though the original “SosGroso.com.ar” site has been on hiatus since October 2004, the image macro trend continued to spread through other Argentinian photo-sharing sites, such as Fotolog which was extremely popular around that time. “Sos groso” macros are still shared from time to time on Argentinian sites like Taringa!.
The English equivalent “Who’s awesome? You’re awesome!” was first adopted into an image macro series on the popular imageboard 4chan. The earliest known image macro of the pointing dog began circulating in 2008 via English-language humor sites like SFWChan and FunnyJunk.
In May 2009, the single serving site whosawesome.com was created and in July 2009, the nearly identical site who-is-awesome.com was created. Both sites feature the original picture of the pointing dog. On November 25th, 2009, Urlesque featured a round-up post of various image macros that included the word “awesome”, with the dog’s image among them. The meme also became quite popular on the microblogging service Tumblr.
Search queries for “sos groso” began appearing in September of 2004, with the creation of the original site. Having its spike through November and December of the same year, search queries began to low down, since the site wasn’t getting updated anymore. Another spike was experienced on February of 2005 with the further update promise (which wasn’t accomplished), and since then, searches continued in a moderate basis.
Search queries for “whos awesome” saw a brief spike in November 2008 before picking up again in June 2009. Searches for “you’re awesome” didn’t pick up until September 2009.
4chan – [researching]
Tumblr – [researching]