Humor, Politics and the Global North: A Systematic Literature Review of Internet Memes

Preetham Gopalakrishna Adiga, K. Padmakumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Internet users commonly use the phrase “Internet meme” to refer to a diverse range of online content, such as jokes, gossip, and videos in online communication (Shifman, 2013). Internet memes play a crucial role in influencing public discussions and activism in the digital era. Studies reveal their potential for spreading false information (Wells, 2018), trigger sociopolitical activism (Nabea, 2021), encourage contemporary protest movements, public communication and serve several sociocultural functions of society (McGowan, 2016; Tammi & Rautio, 2022). Thus, conducting a systematic review of Internet memes can shed light on their role in political activism and various sociocultural functions of the digital society. The review can also help in identifying unexplored opportunities for promoting media literacy and investigating misinformation, disinformation, and hate speech. Therefore, a systematic review of Internet memes is conducted following Okoli’s (2015) framework. The findings highlight the research gap in terms of examining their economic functions, research design, and regional research output on Internet memes. The findings also highlight the need for general awareness and clarity about the concept of the Internet meme phenomenon and its different types.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternet Reference Services Quarterly
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Library and Information Sciences


Dive into the research topics of 'Humor, Politics and the Global North: A Systematic Literature Review of Internet Memes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this