The Yahoo Meme Chart
March 18, 2003 12:34 AM   Subscribe

Is anyone else addicted to yahoo's most e-mailed photos? I find it a fascinating insight into what people think others want to see. Of course there's the usual T&A, and the bevy of cute animals, but other patterns can be observed...(more inside)
posted by Flat Feet Pete (29 comments total)
been hooked on 'em for a year+!
some of the other common faves i've noticed:

geeked out gear, cellphones, segway
military stuff, a plane etc.
horribleness, mutilation or some kind of blood - see the current shi'ite pics
williams sisters and other female tennis players
seemingly endless pictures of W making the most awkward facial expressions.

love the stuff.
posted by asparagus_berlin at 12:40 AM on March 18, 2003

There is more T&A on Yahoo Italy's Most E-mailed Photos. [via Kottke from more than a year ago]
posted by sillygwailo at 12:45 AM on March 18, 2003

Strangely people feel the need to forward different headshots of the president, but he's not got the multi-month lifetime of this popular fellow and his long suffering wife.

Tracking the Rachel Corrie story's been an odd comment on human nature. First people are fixated by the gore, switching quickly to something to lessen their guilt, both images racing ahead of a picture that shows her in a very human light.

PS. sorry about the extra
in the FFP, and also my amateur sociology.

posted by Flat Feet Pete at 12:45 AM on March 18, 2003

Seeing this next to this makes me happy.
posted by homunculus at 12:49 AM on March 18, 2003

sillygwailo: Interesting that Yahoo Italy's most popular photo's has the burning man picture of Rachel and neither of the others. Hmm... scratches chin and decides against spouting speculative, rambling, cross-cutural and anthropologically themed nonsense.
posted by Flat Feet Pete at 12:51 AM on March 18, 2003

Pete - thanks for this. Yet another way to while away 10 minutes of my day!

I do find this thought of people seeing a picture of George W Bush and thinking "You know what, I'm going to email that to Aunty / Uncle Whoever. I don't think they'll have seen a picture like that before. And then I'm going to vote on the quality of that picture. Yes, that's what I'll do." really quite disturbing.

But then, that's Yahoo users for you I suppose...
posted by jontyjago at 12:55 AM on March 18, 2003

If anyone ever e-mailed me a Yahoo photo, I'd cut them dead. I'm an inveterate attachment-bouncer and, as for those who make multiple mails with jokes and stuff they themselves received by e-mail - the disgusting forwardistas - words aren't bad enough.

That said, I'm intrigued so many people send banal photos of Bush to eachother. But not so much I'd be bothered to know the fuck why.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 12:56 AM on March 18, 2003

I'm more intrigued as to why they send each other photos of sweat-drenched topless women wearing gorilla heads, but that's just me.
posted by Slithy_Tove at 1:11 AM on March 18, 2003

hmm. forwardistas. nicely put.
posted by joedan at 1:14 AM on March 18, 2003

The thing that drives me nuts from an interface standpoint is how the main Most Popular page shows 20 photos (and indicates how many times they have been sent, but the Most Popular photos front page shows only 16 photos.
posted by gluechunk at 1:15 AM on March 18, 2003

Since forwardistas are often members of your own family, you must have some pretty frosty Christmas dinners, Miguel...
posted by rory at 2:05 AM on March 18, 2003

Even the ads are sexy!

I am wondering what that image is an ad FOR? Not because I don't like it (she's damn cute) but because I wonder if they have permissiont o use the photo.

Thats Sarah in one of her more popular "red devil" image sets.

More power to her if she got some extra $$$ for it :)
posted by soulhuntre at 4:03 AM on March 18, 2003

Great Lakes frozen Adult Skate .. neat how you can see state lines from space .. Syracuse under a snow drift.
posted by stbalbach at 4:08 AM on March 18, 2003

Miguel, this is just for you. I received this in my email two years ago and couldn't get rid of it. Hopefully you (and everybody else, of course) have never seen it before, or it's been long enough that you've forgotten about it.

Hello, my name is Carol I suffer from the guilt of not forwarding 50 billion fucking chain letters sent to me by people who actually believe that if you send them on, a poor 6-year-old girl in Arkansas with a breast on her
forehead will be able to raise enough money to have it removed before her redneck parents sell her to a traveling freak show. Do you honestly believe that Bill Gates is going to give you, and everyone to whom you send
"his" email, $1000? How stupid are we? "Ooooh, looky here! If I scroll down this page and make a wish, I'll get laid by every good looking model in the magazine! "What a bunch of bullshit. Basically, this message is a big FUCK
YOU to all the people out there who have nothing better to do than to send me stupid chain mail forwards. Maybe the evil chain letter leprechauns will come into my house and sodomize me in my sleep for not continuing a chain
that was started by Peter in 5 AD and brought to this country by midget pilgrims on the Mayflower. Fuck them! If you're going to forward something, at least send me something mildly amusing. I've seen all the "send this to 10 of your closest friends, and this poor, wretched excuse for a human being will somehow receive a nickel from some omniscient being" forwards about 90 times. I don't fucking care. Show a little intelligence and think about what you're actually contributing to by sending out these forwards. Chances are, it's your own unpopularity. The point being? If you get some chain letter that's threatening to leave you shagless or luckless for the rest of your life, delete it. If it's funny, send it on. Don't piss people off by making them feel guilty about a leper in Botswana with no teeth who has been tied to a dead elephant for 27 years and whose only salvation is the 5 cents per letter he'll receive if you forward this email. Now forward this to everyone you know. Otherwise, tomorrow morning your underwear will turn carnivorous and will consume your genitals.

posted by ashbury at 5:22 AM on March 18, 2003

i prefer to get this sort of crack full strength, so i go for the words and the pictures.

ashbury and miguel: in 1998 i got an email from doug, a kindred spirit to carol. share and enjoy!

My name is Doug. Four years ago I was a happy man. Things were going so well, I thought nothing could go wrong. Then I received this letter. It brought me nothing but bad luck. First I got carpal tunnel syndrome. Then my shoulders and neck started to ache all of the time. My stocks, which had been flying high, crashed, and I became obsessed with wasting my time playing pointless computer games. My butt started to itch constantly, and I never seemed to be able to find the time anymore to listen to my Kate Bush CD's. My C++ programs took forever to compile due to an inefficient template instantiation mechanism. My favorite movie, "Brazil", was butchered when it was shown on television, and they even changed the ending. They cancelled "My So Called Life". Now I am a shadow of the man I used to be as I sit here hunched over my keyboard like an old nerd.

There is no way that you can avoid the bad luck that will descend upon you for having received this letter. Once you have received it, it is already too late. But there is something you CAN do. Send a copy of this letter to as many people as possible. Send a copy to your enemies, so that they can suffer like you. Send a copy to your friends, so that they can share in your misery. Send a copy to your family for having traumatized your childhood and made you into the neurotic mess you will soon become. Send a copy to that little girl dying of cancer who wants to win the world record for number of postcards received; every card helps her achieve her dream.

This letter is not a joke. One person who received this letter developed a wart on his index finger. A woman ended up with chewing gum stuck to the bottom of her shoe. A man purchased more than a hundred Megabucks tickets and did not win. A child who received this letter was bullied by the neighborhood kids and a dog ate his homework. An Ozzy Ozbourne fan did not get front row seats even though he waited all night in line. A computer hacker was forced to use Windows NT at his new job. A mother of two had to listen to her young children constantly bicker. Nis!nk'a, a !Kung Bushman living in Botswana lost his ability to pronounce glottal stops. A gamer could not complete the last level of Quake. A programmer could not get her program to work due to some sort of obscure linking problem. A boxer had a chunk of his ear bit off.


You must send a copy of this letter to at least sixteen people within the next twenty four hours. If you don't, the entire universe will collapse back into an infinitely dense singularity, as it was in the beginning. Either that or entropy will make all energy useless and the world will stagnate in what is sometimes called "the heat death of the universe". You don't want to be responsible for total annihilation, do you? This letter applies to you whether or not you are superstitious, and without regard to your race, sex, or religion. This is an equal opportunity curse.

posted by drworm at 6:22 AM on March 18, 2003

soulhuntre: I checked for you. The ad is for a desktop calendar. You can see it in English. Warning: Google translation

Thanks, Flat Pete. I find looking at the most emailed photos of other cultures interesting. I like how the US page allows you to see most viewed and most emailed in the last 5 minutes. A culture on the bleeding edge.

drworm and ashbury: Thanks. A suggestion for others? How about posting those on your user page and linking to it? Or, if you must share all that text... also sharing your email address. Thanks so much. Now please pass this along or bunnies will die. Many. With cat chasers.
posted by ?! at 6:26 AM on March 18, 2003

I knew this man was evil, but I can't imagine who would want to inflict it on an innocent inbox...
posted by eilatan at 6:45 AM on March 18, 2003

?!, that "looking" photo was in our own most-emailed bunch, and I was just on my way here to tell Flat Feet Pete that that should have been the "A" link in the FPP.
posted by soyjoy at 7:51 AM on March 18, 2003

I know this obsession well. Some other image banks that waste a lot of my time: Fotolog and the Lomographic Society.
posted by hairyeyeball at 7:54 AM on March 18, 2003

I've always loved most e-mailed. It's usually one of my first stops when I go online.
posted by adampsyche at 8:26 AM on March 18, 2003

O jeez, thanks, there goes the morning.

Why you should never put your cat in the dryer: Exhibit A
posted by gottabefunky at 8:31 AM on March 18, 2003

I've been a fan of Yahoo!'s Most Popular for a long time. At the top of the page you can choose Most E-mailed, Most Viewed, or Ratings.

There is some overlap between the three, but "e-mailed" tends to have the most unusual stories. The "ratings" looks like it would be easy to manipulate...

Most e-mailed at ESPN, CNN.
posted by Frank Grimes at 8:51 AM on March 18, 2003

I imagine that people forward around headshots of Geaorge W. to their friends because he seems to often be captured in the midst of odd, seemingly-perplexed expressions.

It just seems like people would write funny captions under them and send 'em to their friends. Try it, it's fun!
posted by popvulture at 10:36 AM on March 18, 2003

I much prefer the MostViewed category to the Most emailed, though I will admit that why people would email some of these things boggles the mind.

But taken as a whole, it's an interesting socialogical experiment.

posted by Windopaene at 11:37 AM on March 18, 2003

Yeah, I confess I've been hooked for ages. I like the international flavors, but I also enjoy tracking the longevity of any particular image. Put Anna K. in a thin top and her picture will last 10 days easy. The record for longevity seemed to be that shot of Bush ogling the decolletage of a woman bending over next to him.
posted by ahimsakid at 11:37 AM on March 18, 2003

The most popular photos and articles page is great. And I'm afraid I must at this time confess that I've blogged the cute animals several times. I'm a softie.
posted by Songdog at 12:20 PM on March 18, 2003

posted by quonsar at 1:20 PM on March 18, 2003

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned the Reader ratings both highest rated, and most active

You'll find many a photo of peace protests, babes, and other guy-stuff. I find it interesting because one can see their votes effect the list in real time, and there often seem to be "battles" between people trying to raise, and lower a given picture.
posted by slacy at 1:24 PM on March 18, 2003

Thanks Flat Feet Pete - fun reminder about something cool I have overlooked for awhile, and fun to read everyone's comments. Good first post! ;-)
posted by madamjujujive at 9:57 PM on March 18, 2003

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