History of the Wojak Meme SEO

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How Wojak became the internet’s all-encompassing reaction meme

Wojak is undoubtedly one of the most prominent memes in the modern era.


Mikael Thalen


Posted on Feb 23, 2024   Updated on Feb 23, 2024, 8:51 am CST

Anyone with an internet connection is undoubtedly familiar with the Wojak meme.

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Also known originally as the Feels Guy, Wojak is a crude illustration of a bald man—which spawned a host of other offshoot characters—commonly used to convey sad or melancholy emotions.

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But where did Wojak, arguably one of the internet’s most versatile memes, come from?

The Wojak meme’s humble beginnings

While Wojak’s exact origins aren’t confirmed, the internet culture encyclopedia Know Your Meme says that the illustration may have been discovered in 2009 on an imageboard known as Vichan.

The image was subsequently shared to the German imageboard Krautchan in 2010 by a user called “wojak,” and thus a meme was born.

Wojak eventually became a popular meme on the imageboard 4chan, which thrust the illustration into the mainstream.

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Know Your Meme

I know that feel bro

One of the first popular variations to emerge from the original illustration showed two Wojaks embracing one another with a hug.

The phrase “I know that feel bro” was added to the top of the image. The image is intended to convey empathy and is often used when someone agrees with another’s opinion or feelings.

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The phrase “that feel when” was also regularly used to begin a sentence that described an emotional topic or incident.

Know Your Meme

Wojak meme variations

As Wojak became an increasingly popular way for people to express themselves, the image began branching out into an endless stream of variations designed to fit every person and situation.

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The Crying Wojak, for example, is commonly used to mock someone who is doesn’t get their way.

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The NPC Wojak shows a gray version of the character with an expressionless face. NPC Wojak is regularly used to mock groups of people who all hold the same views, also sometimes referred to as “sheep.”

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The Soyboy Wojak, also known as the Soyjack, is another character used to mock what are said to be effeminate and nerdy men who usually are photographed with their mouths opened excitedly. The Soyjack can be seen with a poorly grown beard, or “neck beard,” and usually excitedly carries a Nintendo Switch console.

Know Your Meme

The variations are endless. Some other Wojaks viewers might recognize include: Big Brain Wojak and Pink Wojak as well as the Doomer, Coomer, Gloomer, Consoomer, and Zoomer, among others.

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Female Wojaks

While Wojak is mostly depicted as male, female versions exist, too.

The Doomer Girl, known for her all-black hair, eyes, sweatshirt, and choker, is one of the most popular variations. Also known as Doomerette, the character usually interacts with her male counterpart Doomer and is depicted as understanding of his woes.

Know Your Meme
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Another is Trad Girl or Tradwife, a popular blonde character wearing a floral dress that is known for her conservative values.

Tradwife, who was popularized on 4chan, is shown as subservient to men and at times in opposition to liberal women and values.

Know Your Meme
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Wojak Comics

Wojak Comics are what tie the Wojak universe together. Wojak Comics show interactions between different Wojak characters and can be used to describe just about any scenario.

Although Wojaks were seen interacting prior, the popular “Yes Chad” meme, which shows a blonde-haired male Wojak simply replying “yes” to certain statements, popularized the format.

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Given how easily Wojak can be used to portray nearly any event or feeling from the human experience, it’s doubtful it will go away anytime soon.

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*First Published: Feb 23, 2024, 8:00 am CST

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