On Friday, we witnessed one of the most aggressively pushed memes in some time. The image in question was a photo of a dress. You’ve seen it. We’ve all seen it.
The viral dress so viciously attacked the human psyche that I took to twitter to post a prediction — that the dress would absolutely be appearing in our dreams:
— hack deeper (@hackdeeper) February 28, 2015
Based on what we have learned in this blog so far, when we see an archetype, symbol or meme pushed into so many people’s conscious experience, it is activated and “resonates” within the collective unconscious.
Well, “the dress” was ringing like a bell on Friday. One Texan even got it tattooed on his leg.
And so, when people went to bed, it did indeed emerge powerfully in dreamspace:
There are hundreds upon hundreds of these dreamtweets — @dreamb0t could barely keep up! — just a small sampling follow:
I dreamt about the dress
— ✱ (@Njhglory) February 28, 2015
I dreamed about #TheDress last night. the internet has turned me into a freakish little bedbug alien who dreams about ugly fcking dresses.
— Ru Weid (@thewallpoet) February 28, 2015
I dreamed about the dress. This is not funny anymore.
— The Louisville Lip. (@semiCARTERmvtic) February 27, 2015
Clyde Lewis did a great show about the dress as a psyop to squelch any reaction to the net neutrality vote. Perhaps a stretch, given that the image was said to have been some tumblr post that went viral ‘organically’ — but then, when I see the media conflating the two (and hailing net neutrality), “What net neutrality and that dress have in common: They’re what the internet was meant to be”, it’s certainly pretty bizarre. [Obviously net neutrality is not what the internet is about, net neutrality is more corporate/fascist control over information, but you can (and should, and probably have) read about that plenty of other places.]
This is not the first time we’ve seen active memes “bleed” in to each other. I also noted this when ISIS supported the Ferguson protesters.
could we have seen it coming?
Over the last month, there had been an increasing trend in dreams involving dresses. The daily chart above is too fine-grained to detect, but here is one using weekly data. Note the uptrend in the last 4 weeks leading up to the explosion this week:
Sure, there are some other reasons people might have been dreaming about dresses. Fashion is always a hot topic around in awards season; earlier this week, as well, one Oscar dress was stolen and returned from Lupita Nyong’o’s hotel room, and apparently returned today.
But even then, this month of “rising vibes of a dress frenzy” is significant. It broke out 200% over two weeks leading up to the “dress event,” which is much greater variance than the term usually sees. The next step for this project is really to compare changes in dream frequencies against historical variances for a given term/concept. Then we could sound an alarm when some usually innocuous term like “dress” starts creeping up — before it even manifests. Makes me want to work full-time on this project…
The other internet meme that was hyped up in western media was something about llamas. Sure enough, we saw an unprecedented leap in llama dreams:
For now, cheers, and much love.