The Style Guide | Know Your Meme
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The Style Guide

The Style Guide
The Style Guide
By Know Your Meme

Published 10 years ago

Published 10 years ago

Table of Contents

Entry Formatting

General Tips

  • Titles should be based on the amount of search results. Can't decide between Breading Cats or Cat Breading? Compare your two titles in Google Trends and pick whichever one has the taller bar graph on the left.
  • Dates should always be written as Month Day, Year (ex: December 21st, 2012), rather than numeric-only dates.
  • Editor's Notes, when necessary, should be placed at the very top of an entry, using italicized text () and ending with an


An event entry is defined as an article detailing a news story, a time-specific development or a regularly recurring event (U.S. Election) that generates a significant scale and volume of online interest and conversations, i.e., viral media. This category includes a wide range of items from scandals, feuds and debates to product releases, deaths of notable figures, raids and protests among others. Sometimes, an event may go on to engender memes.

  • Overview: A brief explanation of the event, what it sparked and how it spread
  • Background: The history behind the incident, what happened? where did it first appear online?
  • Notable Developments: Each of the major stories should get their own

    heading beginning with the date (ie: March 2013: News Coverage)
  • Various Examples
  • Search Interest
  • External References
  • 1) An entry about a meme or another event which caused this event
  • 2) An entry about a subculture for which the event has been arranged
  • 3) An entry about a website that hosted or got involved in the event


A meme entry is defined as an article describing a set of images, videos or discussions that may have mutated from another, but is still bound by a single theme or motif.

A meme entry can be distinguished from an event entry by:

  • content homogeneity: media examples of a meme entry share a common theme, style or message, but not necessarily in an event entry
  • endurance: memes tend to outlive their parent events in terms of cultural relevance as they become more versatile
  • About: What is it in its essence? How is it used or applied in the context of Internet culture? Why is it noteworthy?
  • Origin: Where did it first appear online? Who posted it? If it's a video, how many times as it been viewed?
  • Spread: Where did the meme spread after its initial posting? Did any news sources or blogs cover it? If there is an especially notable example, it should get an

    heading in this section.
  • Various Examples
  • Search Interest
  • External References

where does "type" fit in ie: viral videos, exploitables

  • 1) An entry about another meme or event that spawned this meme
  • 2) An entry about a subculture that is the main subject of the meme
  • 3) An entry about a person that is the main subject or creator of the meme
  • 4) An entry about a website that is the exclusive host of the meme


Sites include:

  • About
  • History: When did the site start? How did it grow?
  • Features: What does the site allow people to do?
  • Highlights: Are there any running gags throughout the site? Has the site earned any achievements or awards?
  • Traffic: Where does the site rank on Quantcast and Alexa? If the site has released any traffic information themselves, add that as well.
  • Search Interest
  • External References
  • 1) An entry about a subculture that encompasses the site
  • 2) An entry about another site that owns this site


A subculture entry is defined as an article about a specific lifestyle, hobby, fandom, group behavior or activity that is rooted in internet culture or has a strong presence online. A subculture entry requires proof of significant presence or influence on a meme, event or site that has already been documented by Know Your Meme.

  • About
  • History
  • Reception: How did the media respond to the subject of the entry? Did it win any awards or are any statistics available about it?
  • Impact: Did it have an effect on any other subcultures?
  • Fandom: Where do fans congregate online? Do they do anything notable when unified? Are there conventions?
  • Related Memes: In this section, link any related meme entries with an

    section including a short description of the meme and an image or video example.
  • Search Interest
  • External References
  • 1) An entry about a pre-existing subculture that spawned this one
  • 2) An entry about a site that is the exclusive host of the subculture


A person entry is defined as an individual who has played or plays a notable role in internet culture, regularly publishes content or a popular subject of internet memes. A person entry requires proof of significant influence or active involvement in a meme, an event or a site that has been documented by Know Your Meme.

  • About
  • Online History: What notable things have they done online?
  • Reputation: What are they known for?
  • Related Memes: When applicable.
  • Personal Life: What are they best known for outside of the internet?
  • Search Interest
  • External References
  • An entry about a site that was founded by the person (ex: 4chan > moot)
  • An entry about a subculture mainly associated with the person (ex: starcraft > seanday9)



  • Center-align all video embeds and keep the width uniform at 425px; avoid embedding more than 8 videos in the body text and upload the rest in the video gallery at the bottom of the entry. For a 4-pane video embed, the dimensions are 300 × 169.

A proper video embed.



  • Center align all images and resize them in equal width or height for optimized resolution; use
    tag around
    tag to leave proper margin between text and image. Be sure to upload the images in the gallery before embedding in the entry.

Look at these lovely properly sized photos!


In Textile:


Various Examples

Use thumbnail versions of images to insert a various example section in the entry, or create a notable examples section to highlight notable images not mentioned elsewhere in the entry. When an image is hosted on KYM, just replace /original/ or /newsfeed/ with /masonry/ within the image URL. You may have to adjust the height within the URL to get it to fit correctly. Images hosted on KYM automatically hyperlink directly to the KYM image pages for full-size view and comments.

What a beautiful set of images!


In Textile:


For the Google Trends report in the Search Interest section, the embed code can easily be pulled from the website. All you have to do is choose the search term you would like to get information about, click the "embed" button and make sure to set the width at 600 pixels and height at 350 pixels.

Copy & Paste:


KYM References

Hyperlink words in the entry only when linking to other KYM entries. If you'd like to link to a specific part of the entry, you can use the tag


to anchor specific headers or subheaders within the same entry. To link to this within an entry, all you have to do is add in an HTML tag linking to that anchor:

External References

Footnotes help separate on-site links from off-site links.

To get a footnote to an external link to show up, there are two steps. First, you must add a number within two brackets [x] directly next to the reference title within the body of the entry:

Footnote Ref (Textile):

"The remix phenomenon has since spread to other popular hubsites and forums like YouTube [1],"

Step two happens in the External References section. Here, you must put the name of the publisher or site it was hosted on followed by a hyphen and a link to the actual object. If a publication date is easily accessible, here is the place to add it!

Footnote (Textile):

fn1. YouTube - "Meme Mashup Remix": / Posted on 4-11-2011

Look at all these links, in one place, for you to spend more time on!

Additional Information

Have more burning questions? Head over to the Frequently Asked Questions thread. If you have an idea for an entry but are not sure where to start, start a thread in the Meme Research forums and talk with other researchers who can help! If your question is more immediate, jump into the IRC Channel for help from a number of posters and moderators.