A Place To Call Home
The quality of video memes since 2016 has skyrocketed, thanks to new advancements in editing tools, the creator economy, and general public enjoyment of well-edited content and memes. Until recently, there was not a dedicated social platform on the internet for solely memes and their creators to communicate, collab, and connect with others.
A Finnish-based start-up called Neverthink.TV noticed that existing social platforms are not good at capturing the financial value created by video meme creators. After seeing how talented and dedicated meme editors were not being properly appreciated, CEO and Co-founder Aviv Junno gathered many talented meme community members to build a new home dedicated to video meme creators and their fans. “We believe they are the most undervalued segment of the creator economy. Meme creators generate billions of views for platforms, but earn a fraction of what other non-meme creators are earning,” said Junno.
The quality of memes uploaded to Neverthink is second to none, with some editors spending 40+ hours editing one meme. “It’s no longer just a video with a funny text; it’s really a new genre. Creators create a whole new story and context which results in totally new and original content. I find myself amazed by their creativity and asking myself, ‘How did they think about this?’ every day,” Junno explained.
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Now consisting of over 250 meme creators, Neverthink uses its community’s influence on other platforms and hosts Meme Jams, monthly community events where creators get together and show off their editing skills. The best memes take home a prize. The name Meme Jam was inspired by Game Jams, where indie game developers come together to create a game in a short period of time based on a theme. Many meme creators are also gamers and find that the indie game community is very similar to the video meme creator community. It’s an opportunity for the community to get together, rather than compete.
Centered around one theme, such as Breaking Bad, Meme Jams give creators complete freedom and aren’t confined to a particular format or style. “The first Meme Jam was a massive success and has served as the recipe for the following Meme Jams, including entertaining announcement videos, winner compilations etc. It all comes down to planning a community event and not a competition and figuring out how to make it so that anyone who participates benefits,” said Minna Liimatainen, Head of Partnerships at Neverthink. “The prizes have never been in the center of Meme Jams. We’ve given small and huge prizes, such as one winner taking home A PS5, Xbox and Nintendo Switch, but have found that the prize value has had little impact on the number of submissions. Our main focus and change since Meme Jam #1 to now, has been around making the Jams more accessible and inclusive to creators at all skill levels. This is also why for Meme Jam #5 we are also excited to partner with a free online video editing tool called Kapwing, so that anyone can easily participate in the Meme Jam.”
Neverthink has seen the popularity of their social channels dramatically increase since Meme Jams began. “We’ve organically generated over 100M video views and over 300k new followers across our social media,” said Jakob Hanses, Head of Original Content at Neverthink. This virality has even been the source for attracting new full-time employees, which Neverthink has 30 of. Jejkobb, a Partner turned Head of Original Content at Neverthink, shared, “I originally saw Neverthink’s name on EpicDonutDudes bio on YouTube. It seemed unbelievable that that’s his job, but I decided to reach out anyway and after two weeks I heard back, had a few interviews and eventually moved to Helsinki to join the team.”
Meme Jam #5 is Shrek-themed and is actively accepting submissions until Friday, May 28th at 9 a.m. Those looking to enter the Jam can find more instruction on how to enter by heading to Neverthink.TV. For more information on the Kapwing category of the Meme Jam, this article explains how to edit a meme and enter the Meme Jam.
Q&A With 35 of Neverthink’s Partners
How did you first hear about Neverthink?
“A friend told me about it and I became interested, so I applied for the partnership,” Brother’s Meme Co.
“Through word of mouth from other people who made memes within the community,” Dolan Dark.
“All my idols were partnered with them,” Tempest.
“I found their SpongeBob Meme Jam on Instagram and instantly wanted to participate,” Nobody_Lemon.
“Some of my friends started getting offers from them, and it sorta made me jealous, but also interested. And then they offered me to become a Partner and I was pretty surprised to be picked,” haruko_please.
“Great meme channels started putting ‘Partner at Neverthink’ in their Instagram bio and then I got curious and found gold,” Splexar.
“I saw a Neverthink meme in a YouTube compilation,” Parsti.
What do you like about making memes on Neverthink?
“I enjoy the creative liberty Neverthink allows for making memes. It allows me to make memes about things that I enjoy and to share that with others,” Mellowshooter.
“I like that I can show my work to a wider audience and I can get paid doing what I like doing,” CoolDiamondsFTW.
“I love the fact that it’s a really relaxed and very fun environment! I love the Meme Jams, but, most of all, I absolutely love how helpful the community is. Do you want to learn a new software like Adobe AE or Blender? Neverthink, more specifically the Neverthink Discord server, is the way to go,” Nexxt Meme.
“It’s community-driven. The Neverthink team does a great job engaging with and listening to its Partners. Making memes for Neverthink is also a great way to expand your audience. The playlist style format ensures that your content is constantly being shown to new people,” Logan Drew.
“It’s all about the creators and community and not just a corporation overlord. They give back to the community by offering jobs to talented meme creators and hosting meme jams with real world prizes,” Kingsman1943.
“Getting partnered with Neverthink is a significant source of validation. In addition, the community’s connections and picking other creators’ brains about ideas make it all that more appealing,” Josedaniel.m4k.
“I like that it’s a platform made for these kinds of videos, so you have more of a chance of people seeing your work. So far, the videos I’ve made and posted to Neverthink’s website after getting partnered with them have done better than my content previously,” Me.wmv.
What separates Neverthink’s Meme Jams from other meme making contests?
“Neverthink is always taking it one step further. Whether it is the prizes or the themes, each contest always has talented creators that you might have never heard of before,” CrustySoup.
“It’s a community-based and fair event. It’s something people look forward to and it has good rules and prizes,” Toxiq.
“Good source material is provided as a stepping stone for creators, such as green screens and 3D models,” Techlin.
“Neverthink’s Meme Jam categories for winning are very inclusive to all skill levels and types of editing,” Arcade Assassin.
“What separates Meme Jams from other meme-making contests is the feeling that anyone has a shot at winning by having multiple categories to compete in instead of a winner-takes-all format,” ChickenLegPotatoCorn.
“Neverthink’s Meme Jams aren’t just compilations of lots of videos like many other contests. Each video that is selected to be included can be for many reasons, including originality, editing and creativity,” Hickmeister Films.
What has been your favorite meme that you’ve seen entered in a Meme Jam?
“The helicopter meme from the Breaking Bad Meme Jam, “ Janobot.
“Miguel Puts The Photo Back Together by Meme Soup. It just cracks me up,” BloxLogics.
“My favorite meme is one that I entered for the GTA Meme Jam. This was, by far, the longest time I have spent on creating a meme, ensuring I had perfected every aspect of it in order to get a chance of winning. The editing was mostly done on Premiere Pro and After Effects,” Crumble.
“Definitely Shrek joins The Avengers,” Ultra E.
“My favorite meme I’ve seen entered in a Meme Jam has to be IGotSilver’s submission in the Breaking Bad Meme Jam. It was so unexpected. The level of quality is incredible and blew everyone’s memes out of the water. This video has everything, from rotoscoping to 3D elements. It is creative, funny, the whole shebang. It was especially surprising, since this was the first Meme Jam that was public and everyone could submit their meme and I didn’t expect anything close to that sort of intricacy,” Meme Soup.
How long does it take you to make a meme that you would enter in a Meme Jam? What tools do you use?
“It takes me around 4 hours. I use mobile editing software, such as iMovie and Kinemaster,” Schmacks.
“It usually takes me less than a week for a semi high-effort meme entry. The main video editing tools I use are VEGAS Pro, Adobe Premiere Pro, and Adobe After Effects,” Blazing Skyez.
“Depends; if I’m doing something simple, then maybe 10-20 minutes. If I’m feeling spicy, I’ll try something I’ve never done before and it’ll take several hours or days,” SudanMan.
“It really depends on the meme. Some memes take lots of rotoscoping and effects, but others can be simple without much to do. I use Final Cut Pro X and GIMP photo editor,” Memesaur.
“If you want to make a simple edit and depending on your editing skill, it can take about 30 minutes. There are a few who take it to the next level and spend 40 hours on a meme. So, it really depends how big you want to go,” EpicDonutDude.
Have you made new editing friends/connections from joining Neverthink? Any new commissions/editing gigs?
“I have found many new friends through both Meme Jams and the Neverthink discord server,” WillMakeMemes4Food.
“Neverthink’s private Discord server lets me connect with top meme creators that I would have otherwise not had the opportunity to meet,” Mork.
“By creating highly-edited memes, I’ve been reached out by YouTubers, such as Sparkles, Crispy Concords and Furiousss, to edit for them, which helped me to improve,” Pink Boi.
“Absolutely, I really enjoy the community that the Neverthink Partners have created. As for editing gigs, I haven’t been looking for any but the Meme Jams have helped me learn more about my editing software,” The Reborn ILLUMINATI.
“I’ve met amazing people in the Neverthink community who are all happy to help each other out. Meme Jams expose us to amazing creators with amazing talents,” ChickenLegsTV.
“Yes, Meme Jams help smaller talented creators shine and bring them to my attention,” Amrovalanche.
These conversations have been edited and condensed for clarity.