Re: virus: What makes memes compete?

Tim Rhodes (
Sat, 12 Apr 1997 13:58:39 -0700 (PDT)

I'm still struggling with whether, and to what degree the meme/gene analogy
works. I agree with what Lee said about genes. So I tried to transpose
it onto memes, with some success, as follows:

Lee Daniel Crocker never actually said:

> What happens over evolutionary time is that memes whose influence
> on their hosts cause them to more successfully replicate those
> memes are the ones who find themselves in the next conversation. But
> it is only when there are two or more alternatives that such selection
> is even possible. A meme that is the same in every member of a
> species cannot evolve until a mutation occurs to cause differential
> selection. When that happens, the success of that meme will depend
> upon the effect it has on its host's success (in replicating it).