The Most Popular Image on the Internet: Ranking the Ultimate Web Phenomenon

Choose the image you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Feb 16, 2024 06:13
Welcome to StrawPoll's ultimate ranking showdown: 'What is the most popular image on the Internet?' We've curated a collection of the most iconic, hilarious, and heartwarming images that have graced our screens and captured our hearts over the years. From legendary memes to unforgettable viral moments, this is your chance to have a say in crowning the Internet's most beloved image. So, unleash your inner pop culture guru and prepare to embark on a nostalgic journey as you vote for your favorite image or champion a missing contender. Join the fun, share your picks, and let's see which image will emerge as the undisputed champion of the Internet!

What Is the Most Popular Image on the Internet?

  1. 1
    This image of a baby laughing uncontrollably has been widely shared and used in various memes and internet jokes. It is a popular and relatable image that people find amusing.
    The 'Laughing Baby' meme is a popular and widely shared image on the Internet that showcases the infectious laughter of a baby. The image typically features a close-up shot of a baby with a big smile and hearty laughter captured in the moment. It has become a symbol of joy and pure happiness online.
    • Originated: Early 2000s
    • Type: Image meme
    • Significance: Symbolizes joy and happiness
    • Popularity: Widely shared and used in various contexts
    • Memetic Evolution: Spawned various iterations and remixes
  2. 2
    This image of a cat with a permanently grumpy expression became an internet sensation and spawned countless memes and merchandise. It has become a symbol of dissatisfaction and cynicism in internet culture.
  3. 3
    This image of a man turning his head to check out another woman while his girlfriend looks on disapprovingly has been widely used in memes to depict infidelity or distraction. It has become a popular way to express humorous commentary on relationships and human behavior.
    The 'Distracted Boyfriend' meme is a popular internet meme that features a stock photograph depicting a man turning his head to check out another woman while his girlfriend looks on disapprovingly. The image is often used to portray scenarios of infidelity, temptation, or distracted attention.
    • Symbolism: The meme is often used as a metaphor for situations involving temptation, indecision, or being easily distracted.
    • Origin: The image was uploaded to the stock photo website iStock on November 2, 2015.
    • Meme popularity: The meme gained significant popularity in 2017 and has since been widely shared and adapted on social media platforms.
    • Variations: Numerous variations and parodies of the meme have been created, often replacing the characters with different images or adding captions to depict various scenarios.
    • Stock photo usage: The original photograph has also been used in various advertisements and marketing campaigns, unrelated to the meme.
  4. 4
    "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster
    UK Government · Public domain
    This vintage British propaganda poster has been widely reproduced and parodied in internet culture, often with humorous or ironic twists on the original message. It has become a symbol of resilience and stoicism in the face of adversity.
    The "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster is a well-known motivational image that gained significant popularity on the Internet. It features a simple design with a bold white text on a solid-colored background. The text reads 'Keep Calm and Carry On' in uppercase letters, and a small crown emblem is placed above the text. The poster has a vintage appearance, with a slightly aged or distressed look. The creator of the "Keep Calm and Carry On" poster is unknown as it was originally designed by the British government in 1939 but was never officially released. However, it gained widespread recognition in the early 2000s when a copy of the poster was rediscovered in a bookstore in Northumberland, England. Specs:
    • Dimensions: Approximately 20 x 30 inches
    • Font: Bold and sans-serif
    • Colors: Typically red background with white text
    • Crown Emblem: Small emblem located above the text
    • Appearance: Vintage with a slightly distressed look
  5. 5
    This internet phenomenon involves posting pictures of cats with humorous captions in broken English. It has become a popular way to express humor and lightheartedness on the internet.
    LOLcats are humorous images of cats with captions, typically written in broken English or humorous slang, which became popular and widely shared on the internet. The captions often highlight the humorous or nonsensical behavior and expressions of the cats in the photos.
    • Origin: 2007 on the imageboard site 4chan
    • Format: JPEG or PNG image files
    • Caption style: Broken English or humorous slang
    • Content: Photos of cats in various poses or situations
    • Typical font: Impact with black outline
  6. 6
    This internet prank involves tricking someone into clicking a link that leads to the music video for Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up." The video has become a popular meme and symbol of internet culture.
    Rickrolling is a popular Internet prank that involves tricking someone into clicking a hyperlink that leads them to the music video for the song 'Never Gonna Give You Up' by Rick Astley. This prank gained widespread recognition in the mid-2000s and has since become a meme on the Internet.
    • Origin: Started on the imageboard website 4chan in 2007
    • Music Video: 'Never Gonna Give You Up' released in 1987
    • Viral Status: One of the most successful and well-known Internet memes
    • Meme Format: Embedding the video's hyperlink in deceptive or misleading ways
    • Prank Variations: Used to misdirect users to the video without their consent
  7. 7

    Nyan Cat

    Chris Torres
    This animated gif of a cat with a Pop-Tart body flying through space has become a popular meme and symbol of internet culture. It is often used to depict whimsy and lightheartedness.
    Nyan Cat is an internet meme featuring a cartoon cat with a Pop-Tart for a body, flying through space, leaving a rainbow trail behind it. The meme became popular in 2011 and is often associated with catchy music in the background. It gained significant attention due to its quirky and absurd nature.
    • Year of creation: 2011
    • Main medium: Animated GIF
    • Popularity peak: 2011-2012
    • Music: Composed by Daniwell-P/Momone Momo
    • Featured on: YouTube, Reddit, and various internet forums
    Nyan Cat in other rankings
  8. 8

    Pepe the Frog

    Matt Furie
    This cartoon frog character was originally created as a non-political meme, but was later adopted by far-right groups as a symbol of hate and bigotry. It has become a controversial image in internet culture.
    Pepe the Frog is a popular internet meme featuring a cartoon frog character. The meme is typically used to convey a range of emotions or ideas through various iterations of Pepe in different situations.
    • First Appearance: 2005
    • Origin: Created for the comic 'Boy's Club'
    • Internet Popularity: Peaked in 2015-2016
    • Sad Pepe: Depicted with downturned eyes and a frown
    • Happy Pepe: Depicted with wide eyes and a smile
    Pepe the Frog in other rankings
  9. 9
    This image of a frog on a unicycle with the phrase "Here come dat boi" has become a popular meme and symbol of internet culture. It is often used to express surprise or get attention.
    Dat Boi is a popular internet meme featuring a cartoon frog on a unicycle, typically accompanied by the phrase 'Here comes dat boi!' It gained significant popularity in 2016, and is often used as a reaction image or to express surprise.
    • Meme type: Reaction image
    • Year of popularity: 2016
    • Main character: Cartoon frog on a unicycle
    • Accompanying phrase: 'Here comes dat boi!'
    • Purpose: Express surprise
  10. 10
    "SpongeBob SquarePants" memes
    Jenno · Public domain
    This popular cartoon character has become a staple of internet culture, with various memes featuring images and quotes from the show. It has become a versatile way to express humor and commentary on a wide range of topics.
    The "SpongeBob SquarePants" memes are internet memes that feature images or screencaps from the animated television series "SpongeBob SquarePants". These memes are known for their humorous and relatable captions that are often paired with the characters or situations from the show.
    • Humor Style: Often sarcastic, absurd, or satirical
    • Caption Format: Captions are usually written in uppercase and lowercase letters, mimicking the speech pattern of the show's characters
    • Versatility: The memes can be adapted to a wide range of scenarios and topics
    • Relatability: The memes tap into common experiences, emotions, and situations
    • Popularity: The "SpongeBob SquarePants" memes have become one of the most widely recognized and shared memes on the internet

Missing your favorite image?


Ranking factors for popular image

  1. Number of Views
    The number of times the image has been viewed by unique users is a significant factor for determining its popularity.
  2. Social Media Engagement
    The number of likes, shares, retweets, and comments the image has received on various social media platforms also indicate its popularity.
  3. Inclusion in Popular Websites, Blogs, and News Articles
    If an image is frequently shared and featured on popular websites, blogs, or news articles, this demonstrates its popularity and reach on the internet.
  4. Search Engine Ranking
    If an image consistently appears in the top results of search engines like Google when looking up relevant keywords, it indicates the image's popularity and visibility.
  5. Memes and Virality
    If an image has become a widely recognized meme or has gone viral for any reason, it is likely highly popular.
  6. Cultural Impact
    If an image has had a significant cultural impact or has become a symbol for a particular event, trend, or subculture, its popularity is higher than those of other images.
  7. Longevity and Timelessness
    Images that are popular for a longer period and have consistent relevance over time demonstrate higher popularity and influence.
  8. Awards and Recognition
    Images that have received awards or recognition for their content or impact, such as photography contests or annual "best of" lists, can be considered popular.
  9. Cross-platform Availability
    The image's visibility and accessibility across multiple platforms (such as desktop, mobile, social media, and apps) contribute to its overall popularity.
  10. Emotional Resonance
    Images with strong emotional appeal, such as those evoking humor, nostalgia, or inspiration, can foster greater popularity and sharing among viewers.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular image on the Internet. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or image is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 214 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each image once every 24 hours. The rank of each image is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular image on the internet

The Internet is filled with billions of images, ranging from cute cat photos to stunning landscapes and everything in between. With so many images available, it's difficult to determine which one is the most popular. However, there are a few contenders that have gained widespread recognition and have become iconic in their own right. From the "Distracted Boyfriend" meme to the "Success Kid" and the "Grumpy Cat," these images have captured the attention of millions of Internet users and have become a part of popular culture. While it's impossible to crown one image as the most popular on the Internet, these iconic images have certainly left their mark on the digital world.

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