I don’t think I invented the “flash fad” meme (or, as I prefer to call it, “flashfad” in the “down-with-the-space-character” mode that’s sweeping the world in the 21st Century), but I think it’s a huge idea.
Years ago, I read a science fiction story where businesses rose during the early part of the evening, were indispensable by 10 pm, and were forgotten by 2 am. I forget the story — does anyone remember this theme? — but at the time I found it intriguing but silly.
Guess what? It’s become true. You get a flashfad like “planking” (see the excellent YouTube video on planking, and the coverage, of course, in Wikipedia) where, as far as I can see, it’s a dumb thing you can do with pictures and UGC, but it’s novel and kind of silly and endearing all at the same time, so it catches on… for the first part of the evening.
As I said elsewhere, the thing is to be the platform for flashfads, and Twitter has that sown up I’m pretty sure.