The Six Things That Make Stories Go Viral Will Amaze, and Maybe Infuriate, You

Overblown Headline of New Yorker Article on Memes Will Amaze, and Maybe Infuriate, You

20140122-092738.jpgIn 350 B.C., Aristotle was already wondering what could make content—in his case, a speech—persuasive and memorable, so that its ideas would pass from person to person. The answer, he argued, was three principles: ethos, pathos, and logos. Content should have an ethical appeal, an emotional appeal, or a logical appeal. A rhetorician strong on all three was likely to leave behind a persuaded audience. Replace rhetorician with online content creator, and Aristotle’s insights seem entirely modern. —The New Yorker.