Collecting Online Memetic Cultures: how tho

Arran John Rees


Using insights gained from reflexive dyadic interviews undertaken as part of ongoing action research, this article positions memes as new and emerging objects of digital cultural heritage and begins to work through the implications of collecting them on museum acquisition practices. The article explores how Stockholm County Museum has collected memes as part of their digital photography collecting activities and draws out the challenges that a meme’s materiality and remix qualities present to provenance, Copyright and ownership. The article concludes that acquisition standards should be remixed to be more appropriate for the cultural contexts that memes sit within and offers some preliminary suggestions on the how tho of collecting. A key feature of those suggestions is my proposal that being more open to alternative approaches to ownership may be more appropriate for these new and emerging object types.


Memes, Remix, digital collecting, digital heritage, social media, acquisition, collections management

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Copyright (c) 2021 Arran John Rees

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Museum and Society

ISSN 1479-8360

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