Meme-ing sexual health!

By John, YAHAnet Coordinator

Oh, internet memes...so difficult to define despite being everywhere online.

If I was to try to sum up image memes, I would say that they are generally cute photos of animals or photos of cultural references with added text that creates a humourous or shocking effect.

But a meme can actually be born out of any photo as soon as a message is added in bold font, and it is shared widely and even altered along the way.

The YAHAnet team wants to explore how sexual health and HIV issues can be addressed through memes without resorting to the mean-spiritedness or sexism of some memes.

We want to re-imagine the familiar in order to tell new health-related, stigma-free stories for the short-attention-span digital world. We hope that you will join us in our mission!

Here's the first set of memes we created:

  
  

In the same way we did, you can create memes using the free tools MemeGenerator and QuickMeme, which provide databases of images that have already been used for other memes.

Or you can find your own image and add text using built-in programs on your computer—for example, see the meme directly above featuring Dwight Shrute of the TV show The Office. To add text to an image on a PC, you can use the Microsoft Paint program. To add text to an image on a Mac, open the image in Preview, go to Tools, click on Annotate, and choose Add Text.

Inspired?

Create your own sexual health meme and post a link to it in the Comment section below! Or, as a YAHAnet member, you can upload your meme to our image gallery.

Please feel free to share our memes with your friends!

* The 64% statistic was taken from the Global HIV/AIDS Response Progress Report 2011.