When seeing something like the Vanilla Ice -remix above, the first “adult” reaction is to start complaining about how people now have too much time on their hands. That reaction is patronizing and also just plain wrong.
Clay Shirky has a great quote in his new book “Cognitive Surplus” about this phenomenon (emphasis mine):
Lolcat images, dumb as they are, have internally consistent rules, everything from “Captions should be spelled phonetically” to “The lettering should use a sans-serif font”.
Even at the stipulated depths of stupidity, in other words, there are ways to do a lolcat wrong, which means there are ways to do it right, which means there is some metric of quality, even if limited.
However little the world needs the next lolcat, the message you can play this game too is a change from we´re used to in the media landscape.
The stupidest possible creative act is still a creative act.
Seeing these Vanilla Ice mash-ups and Lolcat actually restores my faith in humanity. The makers of these have freed themselves of the opression of passive media and have become active makers. The quality of the content is secondary issue, although you must at least appreciate the craft in this video.