Never Gonna GIF You Up: Analyzing the Cultural Significance of the Animated GIF

  title={Never Gonna GIF You Up: Analyzing the Cultural Significance of the Animated GIF},
  author={Kate M. Miltner and Tim Highfield},
  journal={Social Media + Society},
The animated Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) is a digital file format with a long history within internet cultures and digital content. Emblematic of the early Web, the GIF fell from favor in the late 1990s before experiencing a resurgence that has seen the format become ubiquitous within digital communication. While the GIF has certain technical affordances that make it highly versatile, this is not the sole reason for its ubiquity. Instead, GIFs have become a key communication tool in… Expand
Moving Design Research: GIFs as Research Tools
A new use of GIFs, as tools for design research, is highlighted, noting that both the aesthetics of movement and the rich, concise, and contextualized nature of gifs added to the depth of thinking and ability to communicate speculative and imaginative concepts. Expand
'The Perfect One'
This paper concludes with a discussion of the important role that different types of context play in the use and interpretations of GIFs, and argues that nonverbal communication tools should account for complex contexts and common ground that communication media rely on. Expand
Making GIFs Accessible
It is recommended that social media platforms automatically include alt text descriptions for popular GIFs (as Twitter has begun to do), and content producers create audio descriptions to ensure everyone has a rich and emotive experience with GIFs online. Expand
The Postdigital Emergence of Memes and GIFs: Meaning, Discourse, and Hypernarrative Creativity
The use of memes and GIFs has a significant influence on interactions in social networks and online forums. As productions or utterances, these modes of communication benefit from thorough researchExpand
Sound Visualization Using Typography Composition Based GIF
Sound visualization is an experimental tool to experience sound, to give an even deeper meaning of a message, and to bridge the possibilities to convey sound to the hearing impairment, those who carry disability, expanding the minds and horizon so they can experience sound. Expand
Alicia en el país cinético del GIF: lenguaje artístico-narrativo en el siglo XXI
In the last decade of the twentieth century the creation of digital tools has generated a growing interest within the artistic field. The assimilation of such tools has made an enormous contributionExpand
Hypernarrativity, Storytelling, and the Relativity of Truth: Digital Semiotics of Communication and Interaction
The aim of this paper is not to look directly at lies, bullshit, and fake news as a phenomenon drawing on a digital as well as neodigital era, but rather to analyze how their emergence is linked toExpand
Of Mammies, Minstrels, and Machines: Movement-Image Automaticity and the Impossible Conditions of Black Humanity
This thesis argues that the GIF, as an underexplored analytical vertex within the broader matrix of media ecologies, should be understood as a generative nodal point in the American system ofExpand
Interactive Survey Design Using Pidgin and GIFS
An online survey is a growing phenomenon in the digital age because it is time-efficient and attracted little or no cost, contrary to traditional survey method which is time-consuming and expensive.Expand
Unmute This: Circulation, Sociality, and Sound in Viral Media
Unmute This: Circulation, Sociality, and Sound in Viral Media Paula Harper Cats at keyboards. Dancing hamsters. Giggling babies and dancing flashmobs. A bi-colored dress. Psy’s “Gangnam Style” musicExpand


A brief history of the GIF (so far)
Both the electric kinetoscope (1894) and the hand-cranked mutosocope (1895) offered short, silent, photographed moving images as objects of entertainment. Early subjects included actualitiesExpand
Giffing a fuck: non-narrative pleasures in participatory porn cultures and female fandom
Pornography has long been associated with the development of leading-edge technologies and new media forms, so it should be of little surprise that adult entertainment now circulates online in theExpand
It’s Supposed to Look Like Shit: The Internet Ugly Aesthetic
The internet has long-term aesthetic trends, one of which is Internet Ugly, a previously unnamed style that runs through many separate pieces of online culture, but especially through memeticExpand
Making sense? The structure and meanings of digital memetic nonsense
ABSTRACT This paper offers the first systematic analysis of ‘digital memetic nonsense’– clusters of seemingly meaningless digital texts imitated and circulated by many participants. We evaluated thisExpand
Instagrammatics and digital methods: studying visual social media, from selfies and GIFs to memes and emoji
ABSTRACT Visual content is a critical component of everyday social media, on platforms explicitly framed around the visual (Instagram and Vine), on those offering a mix of text and images in myriadExpand
GIFs as Embodied Enactments in Text-Mediated Conversation
ABSTRACT Text messaging has become an increasingly common medium for communication. Its format provides a novel context for the study of social activity in ways that both mirror face-to-face dialogueExpand
Digital Seriality as Structure and Process
While the article does not aim at describing the entirety of networks in terms of seriality, serial operations and procedures have to be understood as playing a distinct and significant role in the digital realm. Expand
WhatShouldWeCallMe? Self-Branding, Individuality and Belonging in Youthful Femininities on Tumblr
As the use of social networks becomes increasingly commonplace, scholars have observed that associated requirements arise relating to how one‘s digital self is practised, worked on, and disseminatedExpand
Jennifer Lawrence, remixed: approaching celebrity through DIY digital culture
This article seeks to interrogate the relationship between two gendered aspects of celebrity: the way in which female celebrities are used to determine normative femininity in a postfeministExpand
As Kamp As Bree
In the episode entitled “Love is in the Air” in the hit drama series Desperate Housewives, Bree Van de Kamp attends her weekly session with her marriage counsellor and remarks that she would beExpand