The woman behind the first world problems meme, Silvia Bottini, is an Italian born model and actress who’s been in a ton of commercials, and she even offers a public speaking course. She’s basically the perfect person to represent the First World Problems meme.
Because the Internet moves so fast, a lot of people don’t remember that the Overly Attached Girl meme was created to poke fun at the clingier aspects of Justin Bieber’s single “Boyfriend.” The original lyrics are a little creepy – “If I was your boyfriend, never let you go / Keep you on my arm girl, you’d never be alone.” Lana Morris, a YouTuber, decided to do a parody song called “Girlfriend” in which she made fun of how incredibly clingy J. Biebs sounded in his song. A still from the newly dubbed “Overly Attached Girlfriend’s” YouTube video went viral in 2012, and never slowed down. Fortunately, Laina Morris has been able to capitalize on the meme and build a career around it.
Scumbag Steve, the meme everyone loves to hate, is actually named Blake Boston and really is kind of a scumbag. The original photo is from his mom’s 2006 Myspace page. According to Boston, he could have “stopped everything” going on with his photo being used by a meme, but didn’t want to seem “uncool.”
When Kyle Craven’s friend posted a yearbook outtake photo of his to Reddit, things got very real, very quickly. The photo in question was actually taken as a joke. In an interview with the Washington Post, Kyle said that “Picture days were always fun days for me,” and that he rubbed his face to make it red, squinted his eyes, puffed out his jaw and took what he thought would be a funny photo. Little did he know that a goof like that would make him Internet famous a few years later.
When a photo of Laney Griner’s son Sammy became one of the most popular web memes ever, she wasn’t happy. But a few years later, she used the unwanted popularity of the meme to help raise $100,000 for her husband’s dialysis and to pay for his kidney transplant. See? The Internet isn’t all bad.
The “Stop Girl” meme all started at a college football game. During a 2010 game between the University of Arizona and Iowa, Sarah – the student who would soon become Stop Girl – had a camera trained on her as she watched the game in agony. Her request that the cameraman stops filming her lead to a bunch of weirdos on Reddit falling in love with her. Sarah is understandably weirded out by the whole thing and hopes that she can put the Internet’s fascination with her in the rearview.
Despite seeming like the portrait of a child arsonist, “Disaster Girl” actually has fairly normal origins. In 2004, the girl and her dad, Dave Roth, were watching their local fire department perform a training exercise, and Roth snapped a perfectly timed picture. Even though Disaster Girl has grown up into a Disaster Young Woman, she still gives us the creeps.
Look forward for Part 2.