Gangnam Style – What makes a meme successful?

Project description: 

In 2012 “Gangnam Style”, a video by the Korean artist Psy quickly became the most watched video on the Web with over 2 billion views.  Limor Shifman, in her 2013 book “Memes in Digital Culture”, argues that memes such as Gangnam encapsulate some of the most fundamental aspects of the Internet in general, and of the participatory Web 2.0 culture in particular. But how can we study what makes memes successful in general, and what in specific would make something like Gangnam style go so viral?

It is possible to approach this problem from different or even multiple disciplinary views, e.g. one could draw on sociological thinking about group/crowd behaviour and/or analyse meme content and meme spread.

Required Skills/Disciplines: Analytic skills, all disciplines. Remark: Project will be adapted to the participants’ qualifications/disciplines.