'Gangnam Style,' Grumpy Cat top 2012 meme list

A good meme can make you chuckle, hit the share button, or roll your eyes. Can you guess which memes grabbed the most Web attention in 2012?

Christopher MacManus
Crave contributor Christopher MacManus regularly spends his time exploring the latest in science, gaming, and geek culture -- aiming to provide a fun and informative look at some of the most marvelous subjects from around the world.
Christopher MacManus
2 min read
Grumpy Cat speaks out about its loss. Image by Christopher MacManus/quickmeme.com

Whether you love them or hate them, memes -- culturally relevant multimedia often enhanced with a witty caption -- are here to stay.

In an attempt to crown the king of all that is viral, the meme maniacs at the site Know Your Meme analyzed internal page views, search interest on Google Trends, covers, and even parodies to suss out the top memes of 2012.

The big winner? Korean pop star Psy's megahit "Gangnam Style," of course. With close to a billion views on YouTube (971 million as of this writing), "Gangnam" inspired an incredible array of copycats; it even surpassed previous viewing records held by Justin Bieber's song "Baby."

Other heavyweight hit generators on the top 10 meme list include a diverse bunch of silly subjects.

Know Your Meme ranks the adorable Grumpy Cat -- known as "Tard" in real life by its owner Tabatha Bundesen -- as the No. 2 most popular meme candidate. Grumpy Cat initially met fame on the link-sharing Web site Reddit, and quickly went viral and sent a million hits to the original uploaded image in its first two days of being on photo-hosting site Imgur.

Carly Rae Jepsen's dance pop song "Call Me Maybe" put her in the third spot; the tune captured worldwide attention with an impressive 361 million views on YouTube, constant summer radio play, and countless parodies. It's quite amusing that a cat beat out a human in this meme-ranking list, but then again, you can't deny how much the Internet loves cats.

As for the other seven most popular meme-inspiring topics, the list includes (in numeric order, starting at No. 4): Kony 2012; Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know"; Ridiculously Photogenic Guy; Ehrmagerd; Overly Attached Girlfriend; What People Think I Do; and Sh*t People Say.

Which meme did you like the best in 2012?