The lifecycle of the animated gif has been an interesting one. The almost-defunct image format that used to be synonymous with poor web design has clearly found a second life capturing brief moments of sports, television, movies, music videos, and just about anything else that can placed into a moving image format. Even if there's still a debate about its pronunciation (being linguistically incorrect happens to the best of us), there's little denying the animated gif's second life has been stronger than when it was largely used as a tool in early website construction.
In today's social media world, animated gifs are seen all over places like Twitter and Facebook, thanks to the copyright circumvention they (seemingly) allow.
Considering this popularity, it's a little surprising someone didn't think of this year's ago; but one man's delay is another one's opportunity. Take GifHell.com, for instance. The site's creators created something of a Tumblr image page that get its content based on which animated
jifs gifs are popular on Twitter. The site offers two formats: the default most popular, which gives you a current list of animated gifs circulating around Twitter; and the most tweeted overall, which is pretty self-explanatory.
Considering the site is in its infancy, the majority of the popular gifs on the first few pages are from last night's VMAs, which means lots of Miley Cyrus gyrating her wholesome upbringing as far away from her as she possibly can, this side of a career in porn. For instance:
I'm curious, since that's on during the prime time block, is it considered NSFW? In other news, I'm actually surprised the Taylor Swift cussing gif didn't get the top overall honor regarding the most popular animated gif. Alas, she had to settle for second place:
For my money, this is the best thing Taylor Swift has ever done. According to the site's Twitter account, they've discovered what is people want in their animated gifs:
— .gif hell (@gifhell) August 25, 2013
With that in mind, here are my current two favorites. Surprisingly, they have nothing to do with Justin Bieber or porn:
As you can imagine, a site like Gif Hell has the potential to be a monumental time sink. Tread accordingly. [Lead image via]