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The internet is a place where one day you can be jamming your favorite throwback hit, and the next day it’s a meme to all of your friends.
fireflies by owl city used to be one of my fave songs lol.— petra (@TypoPetra) June 29, 2017
WHY IS IT A MEME?????
Back in 2009 Owl City released its breakthrough hit “Fireflies,” which had everyone hooked with its synthesized sound and bedroom-window romance. “You would not believe your eyes” back then if someone told you it would become a major hit eight years later.
The “Fireflies” meme surfaced in May, but took flight in June. It’s elegant and simple: The meme features the song playing in weird videos.
when will the fireflies memes die down pic.twitter.com/6BR9YGCalp— ザック (@wuIfofakina) June 23, 2017
When Zac listens to "Fireflies" pic.twitter.com/DRtxRsnOe4— Lenarr Young (@Lenarr_) June 25, 2017
With any meme, there had to be a starting point that launched the viral trend. According to the YouTube channel Behind the Meme, the “Fireflies” meme originated in 2010 with a video that featured adorable photos of cats and dogs, along with a remixed version of “Fireflies” as background music.
Many familiar with the meme and song are also wondering just how Owl City received “a thousand hugs from 10,000 lightning bugs,” as singer Adam Young put it in the song.
@owlcity In the song "Fireflies" you state "I get a thousand hugs from 10,000 lightning bugs." How do you interpret this statement?— pryce (@pryce_d) May 31, 2017
@owlcity Does each firefly hug you 1,000 times or do only 1/10th of the bugs give you a hug?— pryce (@pryce_d) May 31, 2017
Owl City broke down this question and clarified just how he, sole member Adam Young, received his hugs.
Pryce — great question. I was the recipient of 1,000 hugs from 10,000 lightning bugs for a grand total of 10,000,000...Posted by Owl City on Tuesday, June 20, 2017
There’s no telling how long the meme fire will flame on, so enjoy it in all its glory while you can.
Make sure to check out the song that started it all, emo thrills and all.
Vanna Vasquez is a former intern at the Daily Dot whose work focused on viral news, politics, and YouTube. A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, she has also published bylines with BuzzFeed.