The 10 worst memes of 2012
3) Kony 2012
On March 5, the nonprofit organization Invisible Children published a 30-minute short film on YouTube and Vimeo with the intention of making Joseph Kony, head of the terrible African militia Lord’s Resistance Army, the most famous person in the world. The video, which kicked off the Kony2012 campaign, aimed at raising Kony’s profile worldwide so that he would eventually be arrested by the end of 2012.
It didn’t work.
The video became a viral sensation. All of a sudden, people who had no idea Uganda was a country in Africa (much less locate it on a map) were talking about Kony’s atrocities and how he must be stopped. Celebrities such as Nicki Minaj, P. Diddy, Ryan Seacrest, Kim Kardashian, and Oprah tweeted a link to the video to their millions of followers. Every single person in the world wanted to stop Joseph Kony at all costs.
But then… nothing happened. Retweets and Facebook posts didn’t solve anything, so people just stopped caring. The meme became one of the better examples of slacktivism gone wrong—and was made worse by allegations of Invisible Children’s mismanagement of funds and founder Jason Russell’s crazy naked breakdown.
But hey, millions of people felt like they did some good.