A meme is:
An idea that, like a gene, can replicate and evolve.
A unit of cultural information that represents a basic idea that can be transferred from one individual to another, and subjected to mutation, crossover and adaptation.
A cultural unit (an idea or value or pattern of behavior) that is passed from one generation to another by nongenetic means (as by imitation); "memes are the cultural counterpart of genes.
A contagious idea that replicates like a virus, passed on from mind to mind. Memes function the same way genes and viruses do, propagating through communication networks and face-to-face contact between people. The root of the word "memetics," a field of study which postulates that the meme is the basic unit of cultural evolution. Examples of memes include melodies, icons, fashion statements and phrases.
Well that's pretty clear then. I woke up in the middle of the night as you do and thought what the hell is a meme? It wouldn't leave me alone a bit like that tune you can't get out of your head. Think Birdie song, or Macarena. In my middle aged brain fug I originally came up with the explanation that it was a Me Me, (personal) it told others something about me. But being a reasonably intelligent if slight odd woman I realised that the word had to come from somewhere before the land of Blog took over. And it did.
In a sense a meme is still about sharing a part of yourself with others but it's more about the idea, that is being passed around, how we communicate in this virtual world, I guess that's why so many of them are tags, they are contagious. Blogging itself has actually become a meme the same way as learning to light a fire or drive a car. I wonder what the next meme will be, perhaps how to survive without fuel or maybe to operate rockets.
I feel I can sleep easier now that my brain has managed to sort out that little issue. Hope you got some sense from this post. Blame it on sleep deprivation.