Talk:Meme

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January 29, 2005 Peer review Reviewed
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More sourced criticism[edit]

Pity this article is edit-protected. I was about to add two more criticisms, so now I'm putting them here for discussion:

Psychologist Gustav Jahoda, spezializing in the psychology of superstitions and paranormal cult beliefs, critizizes Blackmore's meme theory as a mix of banal truisms about culture already common throughout the 19th century with Blackmore's own "highly speculative and questionable" concepts, and accuses it of violating Occam's razor. (G. Jahoda: The Ghosts in the Meme Machine. In: History of the Human Sciences, vol. 15, No. 2, 2002, p. 55-68.) Argentinian physicist and philosopher of science, Mario Bunge, and German biologist and philosopher of science Martin Mahner critizize Dawkins's meme theory in a 2004 book (Mario Bunge, Martin Mahner. Über die Natur der Dinge. Materialismus und Wissenschaft. ("On the Nature of Things: Materialism and Science"), Stuttgart, 2004, p. 126) as "so conceptually muddled that it borders on non-sensicality", as "ignoring the entire history of psychological and sociological research into human communication", and as an "idealist fantasy draped in an evolutionary biology disguise" while "fundamentally violating all known forms of ontological reductionism or physicalism".

--84.180.255.151 (talk) 12:52, 12 December 2014 (UTC)

Observation[edit]

The edit-protection should stay. It seems to me the main problem is general comprehension, and understanding of what the concept is offering. We attack what we do not understand (I think you will agree). Tylor defined culture, but he was not all that precise. This concept is offering a fundamental unit of culture, the meme, parallel to the phoneme or morpheme in linguistics, and many other fundamental units. I'm bringing in the anthropology box and adding this to it. Meanwhile, if comprehension is the fundamental problem, let's try to make it more comprehensible. I notice that in the last few years some groups of professional scholars have taken a hand on some WP articles. This looks like it is in that category. Naturally, being professionals they want to use a language only comprehensible to professionals. WP on the other hand is trying to make a generally comprehensible encyclopedia (which fascinates me). It seems to me the answer is not to attack the more erudite concepts and try to drive the professionals altogether away, but to make more comprehensible what they have done. This one is not all that hard to understand. We should resist the trashers on this one.Botteville (talk) 09:42, 12 February 2015 (UTC)

I removed Category:Pseudoscience[edit]

on the grounds that ‘pseudoscience’ is a judgmental epithet; also it is, IMO, a very stigmatizing label. In this case, the epithet is wholly unjustified; memes are mainly culture, not pseudoscience.--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 05:10, 13 February 2015 (UTC)

Hi @Solomonfromfinland: This article is way outside my wheelhouse, but WP:CAT says that there must be an obvious reason for a cat to be added and in this case, there is prose to support it. Granted, the prose might represent a fringe position, and I'm not commenting on that, but it is at least supported. I'll leave it to the smarty-pantses to figure out the details, though. I don't have an agenda here, I've only got this article watchlisted in my capacity as a WikiGnome. Cyphoidbomb (talk) 06:28, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
That does not mean that memes themselves are inherently pseudoscientific; they, as i said, are mostly cultural. Popular culture is not meant to be scientific, so the term “pseudoscience” does not normally apply. Also, given the stigmatizing nature of sad epithet; if there is doubt as to whether to place a page in Category:Pseudoscience, the decision should be no.--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 06:31, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
P.S. Good that you don't have an “agenda” here; it suggests you are impartial.--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 06:33, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the removal. I noticed its recent addition but was too occupied elsewhere to bother. Any concept can be abused and it is likely that some people have a view of memes that would warrant a pseudoscience label, but the overall idea is nothing to do with pseudoscience. Even if it were ever demonstrated that there is some other explanation for the issues that memes address (that is, that the memes idea is totally wrong), the topic still would not be pseudoscience—it would just be wrong. Johnuniq (talk) 06:48, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
Good thinking, Johnuniq. Concise and eloquent.--Solomonfromfinland (talk) 08:42, 13 February 2015 (UTC)
There does seem to be some blurriness between the subject of "meme" vs. "memetics" and "meme theory" here. There is a section with the names of both the latter, but the section heading is the only place in the article "meme theory" appears. There are claims of pseudoscience with regard to memetics and the one under "meme theory" begins "Luis Benitez-Bribiesca M.D., a critic of memetics...". I'm not sure why these are separate sections, but in any event it's clear that if the pseudoscience category applies, it's to the memetics article. --— Rhododendrites talk \\ 14:23, 13 February 2015 (UTC)

Other uses disambiguation header[edit]

The other uses disambiguation header seems to, unlike in other articles with such a header, not make clear about what kind of meme this article is that may be confused with others, most notably [Internet meme], I think the header should be expanded to reflect this. Jurryaany (talk) 09:05, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

Certainly Memes are not Pseudoscience by any stretch, but there ought to be at least a single line noting that the Meme concept has been scientifically criticized by some biologists (or social scientists, if one likes)[edit]

No criticism at all of the Meme concept? I think it has value and those who think it's pseudo science are misinformed, but there should be some mention of criticism, no? This is hardly an uncontroversial concept, but one would think the theory of evolution is more biologically controversial than the meme concept from looking at the two articles. This has been PeacefulEditor. Peace. — Preceding unsigned comment added by PeacefulEditor (talkcontribs) 04:20, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 18 January 2016[edit]

Dan Howell is also a well known meme across the world

47.72.205.103 (talk) 04:38, 18 January 2016 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. --allthefoxes (Talk) 04:46, 18 January 2016 (UTC)