What is Jumping the Shark?

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This is one of those fantastic phrases you hear but you may not realize what exactly it means. Jumping the Shark is a reference to the downhill spiral that a website, fashion, television show, etc. takes after reaching great popularity. The term was officially solidified back in 1997, when a site with that name was built: Jump the Shark.

Jump the SharkThe phrase is a metaphor in reference to Arthur “Fonzie” Fonzarelli jumping a shark on waterskis in an episode of the long-running television series Happy Days. That episode is widely identified as the television series’ tipping point in popularity in 1977. Wikipedia states the metaphor was penned by a college room mate of the guy that started the Jump the Shark website.

So there you have it! You might say MySpace has jumped the shark now that all the attention is moving to Facebook!

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