Iz not cats everywhere? Online trend spreads across campus

Four days until Caturday.

That's Saturday for those who haven't yet caught on to the latest phenomenon to dominate the Internet and student lexicon - LOLcats.

That's LOL for "laugh out loud."

LOLcats are funny pictures of cats with captions attributed to them. The captions, meant to represent the cat talking, are rife with improper punctuation and strange syntax - the way Internet users imagine cats might speak.

Two years after LOLcats was created, the reveLOLtion has expanded beyond felines.

Appearing on message boards and blogs, the concept has been applied to images of robots, real people and other animals, even inspiring a project to translate the Bible to LOLcode.

And Penn is right on board.

One notable LOLPenn is a picture of Penn Hillel with the caption "Iz not kosher? DO NOT WANT" while another shows former Dean of Admissions Lee Stetson with the words "I wuz yur deeen: kthxbai".

The most primal versions of LOLcats appeared years ago on an Internet image board called 4chan, when Saturdays were designated as "Caturdays" - a special day to post photos of cats.

Much of the appeal for LOLcats and its variations comes from the strange language used to caption the photos.

"I never thought cats were particularly interesting until I saw them with captions with poor grammar," College junior Michael Murphy said. "If they don't have poor grammar, it's an ironic reference to the fact that [the] cat is speaking well."

For example, what is generally thought of as one of the original LOLcats is a photo of a pudgy grey cat with dopey eyes and a tilted, inquisitive head asking, simply, "I can has cheezburger?"

There is no explanation about why the cat wants a cheeseburger, and no one in the LOLcats community really seems to care.

"It's kind of like a dialogue between kittens, and that's pretty funny, I think," Engineering senior Keith McKnight said.

Earlier this year, College freshman Grace Ambrose created a small Facebook group called LOLPenn, based off a friend's similar group at Kenyon College called LOLKenyon.

The group quickly ballooned to over 100 members in less than a week.

"It was kind of viral," she said. "I've met a bunch of people and they're like, 'Oh my God, you're the girl who started the LOLPenn group.'"

McKnight added, "There's that certain degree of making fun of the Penn community that goes on; people are drawn to that sort of thing."

Through experimentation, however, group members have learned that not every Penn-related photo is begging to be captioned.

"There are some really horrible ones, but I don't want to be the humor dictator and delete people's LOLPenns from the group," Ambrose said.

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Comments

TLP (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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Slow news day, eh Paul? Is this seriously the best the DP has to offer? I mean, even if you really felt the need to write about LOLcats and LOLPenns, then fine, but you could have at least picked out an interesting angle, instead of regurgitating a facebook group to us. How about discussing some of the more savvy variations? http://tinyurl.com/33n6xm At least this article served to verify every miserable thing I've ever said about the DP.

Roastus (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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[QUOTE id="f25e404f-5a11-451b-b83c-7bd8f5081802"]Slow news day, eh Paul? Is this seriously the best the DP has to offer? I mean, even if you really felt the need to write about LOLcats and LOLPenns, then fine, but you could have at least picked out an interesting angle, instead of regurgitating a facebook group to us. How about discussing some of the more savvy variations? http://tinyurl.com/33n6xm At least this article served to verify every miserable thing I've ever said about the DP.[/QUOTE] Somebody hasn't been listening to what Ceiling Cat said about loving their enemies. Calm down and go play pickles with yourself.

Alum '07 (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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It's not the author's fault... he was almost certainly assigned this story by the editors, which places the blame squarely on them. And hey, at least it's better than that insipid "soulja boy" centerpiece from a week or two ago. That being said, this is pretty damn embarrassing. There's seriously nothing else going on at Penn? And most of those Lolcats aren't even very good.

John (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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Worst article ever.

A not very concerned grad student (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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WER IZ TEH QUOTE FRUM ELYSE MONTI?

HOO CAREZ? (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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O, RLY? reveLOLtion? IZ DIS NEWS?

loser (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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waste of my click d bag.

DR OCTOGON (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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i see wat u did ther. poorly researched 4chan references? DO NOT WANT!

im in yur websitez, posting a comment (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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i can haz reel nooz now?

baffled (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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I am baffled how someone with this level of journalism skills got their article published in the daily pennsylvanian.. let alone in Penn alone. Do you have a building named after you?

Rumpus (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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[QUOTE id="e0df555d-cc1f-4cdc-987e-9b872b29c5d6"]I am baffled how someone with this level of journalism skills got their article published in the daily pennsylvanian.. let alone in Penn alone. Do you have a building named after you?[/QUOTE] you, sir who wrote this comment, are the opposite of zac efron

Frau Farbissina (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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[QUOTE id="e0df555d-cc1f-4cdc-987e-9b872b29c5d6"]I am baffled how someone with this level of journalism skills got their article published in the daily pennsylvanian.. let alone in Penn alone. Do you have a building named after you?[/QUOTE] Paul Richards has NEVER had a building named after him. If you knew ANYTHING about the DP, you would know that.

lighten up (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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God forbid we take a break from reading about crime on campus to have a laugh about pictures of cats. The article has a pretty clear title and lead, don't read it if you don't find it interesting.

MTS (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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Wow, did Paul interview the entirety of Pilam or what for this article? Way to go, broheems.

keith (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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[QUOTE id="4a54a563-bdab-42cb-9839-0f7b84a6789d"]Wow, did Paul interview the entirety of Pilam or what for this article? Way to go, broheems.[/QUOTE] pilam has a strong lolpresence. i only wish i realized this was another nefarious scheme by penn publications to demonize us before i said this incriminating things about...cats?

TLP (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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[QUOTE id="4a54a563-bdab-42cb-9839-0f7b84a6789d"]Wow, did Paul interview the entirety of Pilam or what for this article? Way to go, broheems.[/QUOTE] Pilam: Not just for 34th Street anymore.

Michael (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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Biting teh hand that feedz? http://upenn.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=33830184&o=all&op=1&view=all&sub... O wait, Penn gives me nothing.

gigs (not verified)
Wed, 12/31/1969 - 8:00pm

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this is the worst article ever and you should feel ashamed for writing about it what sort of a college degree do you have to have to write an article about lolcats? obviously one in stupidity...

whiteathame
Sat, 05/22/2010 - 9:00am

Ceiling Cat watching UP

OHAI!! Ceiling Cat watching UP kittehs masterbate teh topic; ugetz no cheezeburgers. Studee hrd or dean noms yuz. UP journalism kittehs needz spelchkur, srsly. Syracuse pwns all, kthnxbai.

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