Famous quotes skewered for the Internet age

Digital references are lacking from virtually all famous quotes in history. We decided to change that. 


Nimrod Kamer

Internet Culture

Published Apr 3, 2014   Updated May 31, 2021, 1:06 pm CDT

Digital references are lacking from virtually all famous quotes in history.

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Wikiquote and BrainyQuote have no social media-age statements whatsoever. It seems as if humankind’s first eLeader has yet to be sworn-in. President Obama may tweet a lot, but he seldom speaks net witticisms.

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You’d expect Silicon Valley CEOs to take the reins and integrate hashtag youthemisms into their public addresses, but they never do. Tim Cook keeps saying “amazing” and “awesome” with authenticity. Even the sassiest of them all, Sean Parker, is remembered for corny lines like “I’ve never been much of a joiner” and “There is no simple answer to what I think.” Schmidt, Page, Zuckerberg, Crowley: None have said anything remotely worthwhile or strong enough to be engraved on more than a handful of tablets.

I collected some notable quotes and zingers and injected them with online puns, to exemplify how these phrases would’ve sounded if uttered today. Some historical figures actually said things that can now be considered digi by mistake; they’re in the list too.

Speak softly and carry a big emoji. 

—Theodore Roosevelt

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Hell is other followers.

—Jean-Paul Sartre


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Trust, but verify.

—Ronald Reagan (unaltered)


Mr. Erdo?an, tear down this firewall.

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—Ronald Reagan


Twerk the other cheek.


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The GIF that keeps on GIFing.



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Time to shut down some Twitter lanes.

—Chris Christie

Photo via Gage Skidmore/Flickr

March 21, 2006, a tweet which will live in infamy.

—Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first-ever tweet

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All emoji are equal, but some emoji are more equal than others.

—George Orwell


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Follow the bitcoin.

—Deep Throat, Watergate


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The absence of a hashtag is not #absence.

—Donald Rumsfeld


RT me once, shame on… shame on you. RT me—you can’t get RT’d again.

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—George W. Bush


It’d be a mistake for the Senate to allow any kind of human cloning to come out of that 3D printer.

—George W. Bush

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Unfollow your heart.

—Susanna Tamaro

Photo via Don Graham/Flickr

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Are you now or have you ever been a member of the Reddit community?



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Fake views are the last refuge of a scoundrel.

—Samuel Johnson


I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and X-Pro II filters.

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—Winston Churchill


Toto, I’ve got a feeling we’re not in PayPal anymore.

The Wizard of Oz

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I love the smell of catfishing in the morning.

Apocalypse Now

Photo via Kevin Law/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY 2.0)

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Love means never having to say you’re deactivating.

Love Story


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May the 4G be with you. 

Star Wars


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E.T. WhatsApp home.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial


There’s no place like homepage.

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The Wizard of Oz

Photo via It’s Vintage Darling

Nobody puts eBaby in a corner.

Dirty Dancing

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I welcome this kind of examination because people have got to know whether or not their president is a cyberbully. Well, I’m not a cyberbully. I’ve earned everything I’ve got.

—Richard Nixon


Here are some more new words to consider:

Photo by donkeyhotey / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0) | Remix by Fernando Alfonso III

Art by Jason Reed and Cooper Fleishman

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*First Published: Apr 3, 2014, 10:00 am CDT