We Now Know Why All Internet Memes Use the Same Font

There's a good reason why Internet memes use the Impact typeface. "Vox" reveals why.

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Complex Original

Image via Complex Original

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Ever wonder why memes all use the same font? Well thanks to a recent story published by Vox, we now have the answer.

According to the article, the standard typeface used for memes is known as Impact, and was created by Geoff Lee in 1965 (well before memes were even a thing). In 2004, he explained the origins of the lettering in a now-defunct forum dedicated entirely to type design. He says he created the font using hand-cut metal to make each letter; the result was a bold and extremely legible font that eventually caught the attention of Stephenson Blake, a type foundry that was based in England.

Just a couple years after he came up with Impact, Lee decided to sell the design to Stephenson Blake, which consistently utilized the font because it was easy to read on top of pictures. Fifty years later, and Impact is still being used for that same reason. Only this time, Internet trolls are using it in the hopes of creating a viral image.

To learn more about the meme font and how it became “a digital titan,” head toVox’s website. Once you’ve digested all the history, be sure to take a look at the 100 greatest Internet memes of all time. Hopefully, you’ll have a greater appreciation for them.

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