Memes are the hypothetical “unit of transmission” in information-transfer within social environments i.e. “ideas” that pass from one entity to another in an almost viral way.
Memetics provides an approach to evolutionary models of cultural information transfer based on the concept of the meme. Memeticists have proposed that just as memes function analogously to genes, memetics functions analogously to genetics. Memetics attempts to apply conventional scientific methods (such as those used in population genetics and epidemiology) to explain existing patterns and transmission of cultural ideas. In this theory (or prototheory), memes are considered the “second replicator” (the first being genes, and the third replicator temes/codemes).