Memes are in abundance on the internet: A simple still of Fry from Futurama, Willy Wonka, that guy talking about “aliens,” whatever it may be—there’s a meme for it that expresses a feeling. But why, despite the disparate sources of material to form a meme, do they all use the same font? Vox did some digging and the answer is not surprising, but it’s still interesting to know.
In the video, viewers are told that the specific font being used is Impact. Impact was originally created in 1963, and through a series of random licensing and usage choices ended up as one of the cornerstone fonts for word processing and internet use. Then, a confluence of events occurred that gave rise to the use of Impact as well as the birth of memes, and just like that, a standard is born. It’s an interesting look at how a mod font type can end up representing pithy pop cultural moments, and will have viewers better appreciating the next time someone drops a trollface meme on them instead of responding like a normal human being.