Article Lead Image

Internet pounces on 9GAG after joke theft

This Rob Delaney joke wasn’t the first thing 9GAG has reposted without credit.


Fruzsina Eördögh


9GAG, a website well known for stealing images on the Internet, appears to have expanded into Twitter joke theft. And the Internet is outraged by this development.

“Rough day,” begins the joke in question. “My cousin Tony was diagnosed with whatever the fuck it is that makes you wear those 5-toed rubber shoes.”

Rob Delaney, the Los Angeles comedian voted “Funniest Person on Twitter” in 2012, tweeted this joke on May 31. 9GAG, perhaps thinking no one would notice, tweeted that same joke four days later.

But Delaney noticed within minutes.

@9GAG You have stolen this tweet,” responded Delaney, with a link to the original as proof. “I wrote it. Credit me.”

Unwilling to let the crime go unpunished, Delaney fans proceeded to decry the image-sharing website, while others pointed out this is nothing new: 9GAG is a content aggregator that regularly stamps its own watermark on stolen images and is hated by many because of it.

The front page of 9GAG on June 3 featured art from a Threadless T-shirt, a series of professional photographs, and an entry from the popular Tumblr Texts From Dog, all uncredited. But as many Twitter users noted, this is usual business for 9GAG.

“9gag stealing something off the internet?” @SCOTTqt tweeted sarcastically. “Nawww.”

The 9GAG hatefest quickly moved beyond the micro-blogging site, when a thread about the intellectual thievery hit the front page of Reddit within three hours of being posted. (It was also a popular topic on 4chan.)

Titled “Rob Delaney on 9Gag,” the thread started by redditor megaweaksauce collected at least 10,000 upvotes and more than 300,000 views on Imgur before June 4. From there, users of 4chan, Imgur, and Reddit disdainfully discussed 9GAG and its users in the comments section.

“Obligatory FUCK 9GAG,” shootxthexmessenger wrote in the most popular comment on Imgur, liked more than 100 times.

9GAG quickly deleted the offending tweet from its official Twitter account, but it was too late. The damage had already been done.

Once the 9GAG Twitter account caught the Internet’s attention, past tweet crimes quickly surfaced; this was not the first time 9GAG had stolen a humorous tweet from a prominent personality.

On June 2, the official 9GAG Twitter account tweeted a joke originally told by comedic writer Megan Amram. In fact, this was the second time 9GAG had used a joke from Amram, but no one noticed until now.

“Why would anyone ever think they could get away w/ stealing tweets from comedians with thousands of followers?” @Lizzzing asked on Twitter.

While no rules yet exist for Twitter joke theft, users have rallied against stolen tweets before. Theft from writers, even if it’s 140 characters at a time, is clearly not tolerated on the Internet.

Photo via Rob Delaney/Instagram

Share this article

*First Published:

The Daily Dot