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See the First Image Ever Uploaded to the Internet

Les Horribles Cernettes

The very first photo uploaded to the internet is making the rounds once again nearly 20 years after earning the distinction. And, no, it’s not a photo of cat, a corgi or even Nicolas Cage. It’s way, way worse than that.

The image was created by Silvano de Gennaro, an IT developer at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland, and it’s a faux album cover for an all-female joke band called “Les Horribles Cernettes.” The group, which was comprised of CERN employees, apparently formed as a goof in the early ’90s after appearing at the CERN Hardronic Music Festival.

“My colleague … asked me for a few scanned photos of ‘the CERN girls’ to publish them on some sort of information system he had just invented called the ‘World Wide Web,’” explained de Gennaro. “I had only a vague idea of what that was, but I scanned some photos on my Mac and FTPed them…how was I to know that I was passing a historical milestone as the… first picture ever to be clicked on in a web browser?”

And now, with the 20th anniversary of the technological milestone looming on July 18th, we get to enjoy the badly Photoshopped-before-Photoshop-was-even-a-thing photo once again. Aren’t we lucky that things live forever on the internet? Keep this photo in mind the next time you upload last night’s party pics to Instagram.

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