How to Be Quick With the Memes
Strategies for storing GIFs, Instagram posts, and TikToks for future use in the new year
There’s something extremely satisfying about having the perfect meme in your arsenal to deploy as a wordless retort on Twitter or in response to someone’s text. I probably have dozens, if not more than a hundred, memes squirreled away on my iPhone for future use. Whenever I see a good one, I immediately save or screenshot it, file it to “Favorites” on my Photos app, and move on with my life.
This simple method serves me well, but it’s far from the only way to bookmark images, GIFs, tweets, TikToks, and other precious media.
In the spirit of the New Year, when we’re suddenly expected to tidy up our lives, here are the results of an unscientific survey on Twitter and poll of Medium colleagues aimed at collecting the best tips and tricks for meme storage in 2020.
“I screenshot off Instagram then crop on iPhone which slowly leads to those absurd cut-offs where you can barely read the bottom text [of a meme], but Instagram really does not make it easy to save stuff straight up. I have all my memes interspersed with all my other photos on my camera roll. When I want to send a meme to a friend I just scroll up to a random point and drop one.” — Peter Slattery, OneZero audience development editor
“Screenshots and saving on Instagram!” — Rachel Kalson, OneZero editorial producer
“On my home laptop, I have a folder titled ‘dumb stuff’ that’s mostly screenshotted memes and GIFs with file names that make them easily searchable (for me).” — Yasmin Tayag, OneZero senior editor
“Screenshots for memes and downloading for GIFs. I have a meme folder on my phone AND one on my laptop.” — Andrea González-Ramírez, GEN senior staff writer
“Screenshots and organizing them in a folder. Or sending them to my group chat/girlfriend and using the details function in the iMessage app.” — Shaq Cheris, Medium editorial assistant
“I bookmark on Instagram in folders labeled by the people I send them to. The details function in iMessage and basically my DMs are also meme ARCHIVES. TikToks are a lost cause… no good way to save those.” — Tessa Modi, Medium art director
“Save on Instagram, and then also for work stuff or anything funny on desktop, I screenshot and save to an indiscrete folder I have named ‘Lols.’ Or I also email myself funny or whatever links online that I wanna look at later but don’t actually send it — just save it as a draft.” — Eunice Park, Medium assistant managing editor
“I ‘Save to Collection’ on Instagram, and just have a bunch of different collections that I save to.” — Nate Goldman, Medium senior engagement editor
“Saving on Instagram and my DM history with friends on my phone. I download if on desktop, or DM myself so my texts with myself are just my memes.” — Jess Kim, Medium editorial producer
Another fine option, of course, is to not save memes as all. Huck Morrone, Gen Zer and son of OneZero platform editor Megan Morrone, responded to our unofficial survey with this wisdom: “I only share, I don’t save.”
Suzie Burdman, senior growth marketing manager at Medium had a similarly inspiring approach: “I Marie Kondo my memes,” she explained. “I can’t hold on to them if they’re not bringing me joy in that very moment.”