Google search for 'the scientific name of the largest cockroach Megaloblatta longipennis' with image of cockroach

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‘Google the scientific name of the largest cockroach’ is the stupidest meme of the week

People are obsessed with this cockroach name because it sounds like 'long penis.'


Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

Internet Culture

Posted on Aug 22, 2023   Updated on Sep 20, 2023, 6:47 pm CDT

If you’re wondering why people are suddenly telling each other to google the scientific name of the world’s largest cockroach, well, it’s easy enough to find out.

The “Megaloblatta longipennis” can be found in South America, and holds the Guinness World Record for being the biggest cockroach. The largest recorded specimen is 3.8 inches long and 1.75 inches wide, in case you’re wondering.

But its main claim to fame is, of course, the fact that its name sounds like “long penis.”

Tapping into everyone’s inner 10-year-old, this cockroach is suddenly all over X. It’s now joined the long tradition of “don’t google” memes, which trick the reader into googling offensive or puerile keywords.

According to Know Your Meme, this isn’t the first time Megaloblatta longipennis has gone viral. The name was previously spread via a 2018 Tumblr post, and there are a bunch of Reddit threads along similar lines.

However, the idea of turning the cockroach into a Google punchline only emerged this week, seemingly kickstarted by a 9GAG meme reading “Don’t look up the scientific name of the largest cockroach.” And yes, this has indeed led to a spike in searches:

largest cockroach scientific name google
Google Trends

As a piece of silly trivia, this new piece of bug knowledge is sure to win the hearts and minds of any middle-schoolers in your life. And it’s technically educational, which is more than you can say for most dick jokes.

Google Trends
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*First Published: Aug 22, 2023, 9:52 am CDT