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I am an object of internet ridicule, ask me anything (2013) (theawl.com)
265 points by paublyrne 11 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 100 comments





If I saw what the picture purports to show, a hipster in the park typing on a typewriter, I might smirk or roll my eyes or something if I did anything at all. However, if you want attention commenting on a post on reddit, or anywhere, you can't just say "There's a chance I'd subtly roll my eyes at this" - you have to go more extreme. In the same way that BuzzFeed described the picture as one that would make you "Black out with rage" you've got to go from "10% chance of smirk" to "I will smash this hipster-doofus's typewriter."

A lot of stuff in internet comments is stuff that would absolutely never happen in real life. If you saw a hipster on a typewriter and a crowd of people bullying him in real life, it would be absolutely clear which behavior was worse. Plus, none of those people in real life would actually do any of the extreme things they write about in internet comments.

The whole thing makes me imagine a forum of the future. Maybe it's more like a physical forum or park in virtual reality. There's a story at the center and radiating out from it are avatars that have been left behind by commenters. The avatars would be run by an AI that has been briefed on what point the commenter wanted to make. Other users, using the forum live, could wander through the park and interact with the deposited avatars or one another. Bringing some elements of reality to the forum experience - i.e. making it look like you are in a public space and interacting with people, may also bring in some elements of civility that we enjoy in reality and not online.


IE the Greater Internet Fuckwad theory (https://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19). The bitter irony is that originally, mods and admins on forums did what they could to contain this kind of behavior. Now it's actively encouraged because rage means engagement, and engagement means more ad revenue.

Honestly, with Twitter and Facebook actually being more noxious than anonymous forums like Reddit or HN, I'm not so sure that anonymity is the driver.

I agree with you and I'd take it a step further: I think there's considerable evidence that anonymity is not the driver.

Being out of range of immediate physical violence is probably a big factor, though. We have the "fighting words" doctrine for good reason.


Also the ability to disseminate posts to like-minded people creates a sense of false-consensus. Like if you mouth off in a town square the people hearing it and reacting are a fairly representative cross section of the population. If you mouth off on Facebook or Twitter the people reacting are either big enough fans to want to react or sufficiently hostile to what you said that they will lose their shit over it. It makes everything seem more extreme. Your detractors all look stupid, because the most motivated people to pick fights with strangers on the internet are, if we're being honest, more likely to be a little unhinged. Your supporters are also going to be pretty extreme in their agreement and unlikely to take you aside and tell you to chill out for similar reasons.

I don't know if there's a named maxim for this phenomenon, but something I learned on Twitter is that everything you say can be interpreted in bad faith.

This can be done on purpose, or it just happens because there's not enough shared context to connect how you read something to what the other person was trying to say.

(Also, while a picture still says 1000 words, I've never had less faith in the veracity of those words.)

I've tried to be earnest on social media, for reasons like this. You see a photo of a guy with a typewriter, try to paint it in a good light for yourself.

I'm not sure how I would have reacted, but I had a short phase in college where I dredged up an old typewriter from a friend's garage and used it to type love letters to girls. So maybe I could have related a bit better!


One of the best changes I made during the pandemic for my mental health was realizing that I was starting to fall into that mental trap too and deliberately deciding not too.

I'm not always great at it, but since then, I have started to try to interpret most things I read online as charitably as possible, especially when I choose to respond to someone.

As if by magic, once I did, I started seeing that the world was a more positive place than I had realized. So much of my perception of negativity was something I was creating in the process of interpretation. It wasn't in the data itself.

Giving people more of the benefit of the doubt does set me up to occasionally be suckered. I accept that as a worthwhile price to pay to give kindness towards the majority of other people who are acting in good faith.

Sort of like the value of money, society is what we believe it to be.


I like the HN guideline enough to consider it for use on other sites and on my own.

"Please respond to the strongest plausible interpretation of what someone says, not a weaker one that's easier to criticize. Assume good faith."

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


“If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him.”

>>everything you say can be interpreted in bad faith.

You're only saying that to absolve yourself from understanding that people's criticism of whatever stupid or evil thing you're into is valid.


Well done, I think.

Now I'm reminded of Poe's Law...


No, no. That was serious. ;)

Not only CAN it be interpreted in bad faith, but users are ENCOURAGED to do so, because that makes people angry, and people stay on the site and keep clicking longer if they're angry.

"Men may construe things after their fashion, clean from the purpose of the things themselves." -- Bill S. (1599)

It seems like an extension of the actor-observer bias / fundamental attribution error.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Actor%E2%80%93observer_asymmet...


Intentional misunderstanding is a time-honored technique for getting people to talk. If the target is an engineer, it's a form of nerd sniping. https://xkcd.com/356/

PUA "gurus" sometimes suggest this as a flirting technique.


I once had a blog post go a little bit viral on HN, Reddit, Twitter etc, years ago.

At first I was really worried about the negative comments, and tried to justify myself or make corrections. After 24 hours I was so numbed to it all, that I began to find the negative comments amusing.

One Reddit commenter called me a "Incompetent fuckbucket" and I enjoyed that phrase so much that I ended up screen capping it and using it in a couple of public talks.


That chimes with my experience. Back in 2009 my (then) 9 year old son made a few stop frame lego movies and we posted them on YouTube. Some of the comments were really mean. I remember being surprised by the response but found it quite amusing. We still joke about our favourite comment: “You’re an embarrassment to the stop motion community”

That's the most original insult I've seen in a while, drew a couple of chuckles...

“ After I posted, the message board thread’s climate changed immediately. Not unlike real life, people were complimentary and kind. Many people deleted their mean comments — one person was so embarrassed for threatening to smash my typewriter that he apologized to me, and then went through and started trying to make other haters apologize.”

This is deeply familiar to me and is amazing to see in action. I regularly reply to people on Reddit and HN who are crapping on a product I’ve made and witness both the person’s position on the product and the thread’s overall tone change almost instantly. For whatever reason, it works less well on Twitter.


It's truly amazing to me (in a bad way) how humans are on the internet. They don't seem to realize that other people are real people. There's something about a reply that snaps them out of it. I've seen it happen many times myself as well.

> They don't seem to realize that other people are real people.

It is hypothesized that there is a rough upper limit to the number of people our brains can naturally conceive of:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbar%27s_number

Of course, with effort, we can be mindful that in fact we are surrounded by millions of strangers, but it's not an instinctual emotional reaction. When in environment like sitting at home staring at a screen, it's easy to forget to do that cognitive work.


Something similar sometimes happens in heavy road traffic too I think.

By writing this I'll contradict what I'm going to say, but, generally, not applying to this thread, I observed that many times people spend their precious time to write a reply instead of using it to better understand TFA.

I think it works less well on Twitter because of the constrained length of the replies. With, say, a few paragraphs, you can explain yourself well enough to garner sympathy. One lone sentence is just something else to dunk on.

maybe why in person life is radically different, people don't get the same level of raw unfiltered toxic reaction

that said I really wonder how come our brain can be so destructively egotistical when behind a screen (or a car windshield)


This article was excellent! I feel sorry that the author had to go through all that. It's made me realize and regret some of the times I personally have negatively snap-judged a person on the Interwebz based on just one context-devoid picture with too many upvotes.

Tribalism is a heck of a drug. Easy to get involved in, satisfies our primal instincts, and is frequently horribly destructive. I hope one day I can have enough discipline to not criticize every stranger on Twitter.


I find it best to try never to say anything negative online, and certainly not attack anyone. I have my own opinions, and I can share them with those close to me. There’s nothing to be gained from saying anything negative in public, no matter how you feel.

Past threads:

I Am An Object Of Internet Ridicule, Ask Me Anything - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6412708 - Sept 2013 (378 comments)

I Am an Object of Internet Ridicule, Ask Me Anything - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9997902 - Aug 2015 (3 comments)


Ohboyohboyohboy, it seems I dodged bullet with an idea that I had 5-6 years ago that was very similar to this guy's: My idea was to sit beside a sign that said something along the lines of "Celebrate yourself Through Poetry" in the morning in downtown Chicago in front of a large office building. People going in would commission a poem in the morning, I would finish it and write it in calligraphy on a nice piece of paper by 4pm for a fixed cost, say $20. They would either buy or not buy the poem after I show it to them. A poor person's Francois Villon, if you will.

I've never mentioned this to anyone other than my wife (who used to work in that building) and she laughed her head off. Now that I write it, I feel like I might do this in the future. What do you think, would you buy such a thing for $20-$30 a piece? OTOH, I've gotta admit: I think most of the customers would be young women, so that would make me seem more of an object of ridicule / creep than this guy. Still ...

EDIT: OK, now that I've read my entry I feel like I have to admit something that makes the above proposition more insane or interesting, depending on your POV: I cannot write poetry, like not at all! My proposed strategy was to lean in to my NLP skills and get software help to find interesting ideas, rhymes, etc. Sort of auto poem creation with human tweaking.


There’s a guy on London’s South Bank calls himself the “poetry busker”. Types them up on a vintage Remington, wears a top hat. Been there for years.

Right location and nobody will blink.


never noticed this guy before - could you provide a more exact location?

I would totally be willing to pay $20-30 for this, and not in a sense of "object of ridicule". And I would be willing to pay for this on more than one occasion, even.

The service you would be providing has been, in a way, so normalized over the past 5+ years in the digital form (people doing poems/paintings/various other art-related things on commission on public streams; entire successful companies built around a similar premise, just look at Cameo), that your proposition starts sounding more and more "normal" as the time goes.

And I don't care if the poetry is not good, as you claim you have no skills. Authenticity is what matters here. And you are being absolutely self-aware about your skills, which only adds to authenticity. Especially given the more minimalistic/industrial/lo-fi (not related to "lo-fi hiphop" type of stuff) direction that popular art has been moving in for the past few years.

Plus, I am willing to bet that after you do it for a month, even if you did it only for a few days each week, your poetry writing skill would shoot up massively. You use software to assist you? Even cooler, as long as there is still a significant human element in the process, and it ain't just some publicly available software doing 100% of the work for you (because at this point, I could use it myself; there is a reason people pay for concerts instead of listening to perfectly recorded and mastered music replayed on speakers at concert venues).

I will say this, though. Given it is a physical version of that successful digital approach i've mentioned, you got additional pros and cons. The pro is that the physical element makes it feel more "real", thus people are willing to pay more and more often. The con is that your success and viability, at least at first, will very very heavily depend on the location of choice where you are thinking of doing that.


You might get some takers if you did it in a college town, but as you probably know poetry is not exactly the hottest selling genre of literature... and finding people that read at all is hard enough.

You'd probably have a much easier time offering to write dirty jokes.. or juggling.

What people want on the streets is a spectacle... the louder and more garish the better.


I hear you; however, one rarely gets a literary piece, let alone poetry, created specifically for them. To His Coy Mistress may sound formulaic and drab, but what if you are Mary Villiers, who Marvell was tutoring at the time and probably addressed in the poem (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Villiers,_Duchess_of_Buck...)? You probably would view it differently.

Give it a try, and please report back. It'll be interesting to hear what your experience is.

This is a sadly accurate comment. Please pass the hemlock.

> They would either buy or not buy the poem

Why not just allow them to set their price?


I wouldn't pay for it because I don't like most modern poetry or poets and calligraphy's not worth much to me unless the words it captures are worth it. Maybe if you did calligraphy requests.

However one should be adventurous, especially where there's so little to lose. The subject of the OP is easy to ridicule because he looks conventionally nerdy/dweeby and has a flipping typewriter at a park. Just dress normally and be friendly and you'll just be a street artist doing calligraphy instead of caricatures, nothing to laugh at


Or... you could read the linked article? It seems that you've completely missed what was being ridiculed, and why.

I did (I thought my subtle reference of dodging the bullet to a comment to the piece his ex wrote was clever ;-), I was just going on tangentially about an idea similar to the one that he had, which, in retrospect, is more ridicule-worthy.

> an idea similar to the one that he had, which, in retrospect, is more ridicule-worthy

Like I said, that isn't what was being ridiculed, nor why.

What was being ridiculed was a photo of him in the park with his typewriter, because the image was posted without context. Your story is in no way comparable, because in your case it's the idea of writing poetry that your girlfriend found derisible, not the idea of you sitting on a bench with pen and paper in hand.


Well-written article. I believe I actually saw that image a long time ago.

This kind of context-free Reddit post often leads to cascading levels of verbal abuse. All that these kinds of post do, and all it is intended to do, is to incite a hail of abusive comments with a lot of self-righteous sanctimony thrown in.

This was the raison d'etre of now-banned subs like r/fatpeoplehate. People had their photos posted without their permission, for no other reason than for posters to abuse them for all their perceived personality failings (lack of willpower, laziness, entitlement) --- all on the basis of one photo, of a person they've never met.


Title says 2013. Wasn’t it only in recent years that people were brining typewriters to Starbucks. Maybe it was never considered cool, but it wasn’t treated like this person. Funny how time changes things.

It’s like the “nerds” that were treated so badly in the 80s for being into Starwars and dressing up in their favorite characters. Now Starwars is cool and dressing up garnishes respect based on how elaborate and how much work went into it.

I guess none of the above is surprising. It happens with everything. Inventors, entrepreneurs, and other people that are later respected as pioneers.


> dressing up garnishes respect based on how elaborate and how much work went into it.

That sounds very much like a 'within the community' sort of thing.

Isn't it just that the internet's made it easier for groups with (varying degrees, of course, of) niche interests to congregate?


I think it’s a bit of both. The internet has also made the niche groups more visible, probably making them grow in confidence/appeal/numbers. So people don’t need to worry as much about being labelled weird by association. Being labelled too basic/boring is also probably more of a concern than before, so the social pressures are aligning more and more with taking part in niche interests, or at least not being seen as scornful of them. I don’t have any numbers to back this up but that’s how it seems to me. Compared to a few years ago anyway.

I remember seeing this in person when walking around the highline around this time. I was with my SO and we thought it was cute, hipster-y, and fun.

What's interesting to me is that we had some of the same sentiments that were expressed so negatively on reddit, but in a very positive light? Crazy how the anonymity and lack of context can easily influence folks to be so negative.


I remember reading this back in the day. I remember being shocked and dismayed at the way he was treated.

I mean the idea is a bit insane but the guy needed to eat and he’s a writer. I still think the idea of using a typewriter to become a writing busker was pretty clever in the end.

I wonder how he’s doing today.


Happy to see that he seems to be doing fine: writing a book, doing podcasts, and still available with his typewriter for personalized stories.

https://cdhermelin.com/


I'm glad I saw this. While reading and feeling bad for him, I wondered what I would have done if I saw that reddit pic without context, and then read the mob of comments.

Perhaps I would have upvoted some mean comments, or laughed at them, or maybe shared the link with a friend, hoping to invite more ridicule. I wish I could say I'd be some of the people defending it, or even better, someone who doesn't click on such posts.


I remember this. This article convinced me that the word "Hipster" is just another random insult directed at the generic other. A completely useless descriptor.

It's not random.

Someone in stereotypical metalhead attire is unlikely to be called a hipster for it, neither is someone dressed in punk fashion, nor a goth or a jock, etc... well, they won't by a anyone with half a clue as to what the identifying features of these subcultures are.

The negativity comes from people assuming that hipsters think they're cool, but (according to their critics) they're not... it's kind of a rejection of a holier-than-thou attitude, but in fact the critic is engaging in the same snobbery by picking on the hipsters (or whatever subculture they're targeting).

The insult slingers are trying to act as a fashion police, as if there's something special about them that let's them see what's "really cool" that hipsters are blind to. But every sense of fashion is just as arbitrary and ridiculous as any other, and no one's so cool that they can't be looked down on and sneered at by someone else.


It's not exactly because they "think they're cool", it's because hipsters reject cheap mass-market consumer goods and embrace expensive one-off artsy goods, while simultaneously adopting poverty aesthetics like wearing old second hand clothes and recycling everything. They're seen, perhaps unfairly, as rich gentrifiers.

Well said. It's the perceived hypocrisy in hipsterdom that is seemingly so eyeroll-worthy, but to roll one's eyes, one needs to pointedly ignore the fact that we're all hypocrites about something.

I blame this on the deification of schadenfreude in popular culture. The advent of reality TV, and the prurient interest in other people's pain exemplified by the afternoon talk shows that predated it, gives us all not only the opportunity, but the permission and encouragement to feel like we're superior to others because of some dehumanizing glimpse into an uncontextualized portion of their private lives.

What a different world we might have if society cultivated a sense of humility, a 'hey, none of us are perfect and we're all out here struggling and I wish us all the best' mentality.

But then, fostering divisions and appealing to our baser, more ignoble instincts is more beneficial, both in terms of profit and also 'divide and conquer' social control.


I don't see the contradiction between rejecting those mass-market items and wearing second-hand clothes. Everyone has different priorities of where to spend their money.

It could even be a matter of principles. Anything produced at scale, especially clothing, exploits cheap labor. That's something these people may want to avoid. It's also bad for the environment to buy cheaper items that will likely fail quickly, and if old clothes are still usable then why waste resources on new ones?

The holier-than-thou attitude that the other commenter mentioned is still what I believe is the reason for hipster hate. And it's not always unwarranted. If someone becomes a hipster because they want to feel superior, then that certainly does make them annoying.


As someone who's not a native english speaker (and hasn't spent more than week or two in an English speaking country) I pondered a little the on meaning of hipster. I don't think I made much more progress in defining it than "trend sensitive". I am not sociologist by any means, but if anything described the current trends in the cultural middle class it is striving towards some kind of ill-defined claims of authenticity. What better way to express it in the instagram age than through outer means like fashion or by borrowing fashion from other movements that are known for rebelling against the ideas of their time.

The hipster is just tip of the collective idea iceberg.


Language evolves based on usage and what speakers need to describe. The word wouldn't have evolved if there wasn't a use for it. Maybe you mean to say that you dislike how people use the word?

I never liked the word. It isn't even clever.

A lot of internet communication platforms are just The Two Minutes Hate, only they run 24/7.

What a great read.

I wish more people were aware of the value of anonymity.

Exposing yourself to the world comes with its pros and cons.

Attaining celebrity status may make you rich, but at what cost?

Maybe many will turn into paying fans, what about the stalkers, the bullies? What about the mentally disturbed with a knife?


This is why I prize anonymity over almost anything else and why I'm very grateful that the tech community tends to value and teach privacy as well. My dream in life is to be filthy rich and disappear my identity to live in isolation somewhere. Filthy rich is a stretch, but thankfully it shouldn't be too hard to live frugally and retire somewhere isolated and remote.

I agree with you about the value of anonymity.

For me, though, I use my real name everywhere because I don't want to be able to hide behind an anonymous identity, and the reason for that is that it's easier to be like the jerks that were mean to this writer when you're anonymous.

Not being anonymous means that I think more carefully about what I am going to say and try, in every instance, to be nice, even if I disagree.


That's very interesting.

If you look at 4chan vs Facebook/Twitter, you'll see different behaviours.

4chan is extremly politically incorrect but it's also the only place where you can find what people actually think, without filters. Facebook and Twitter are a collection of echo-chambers of people saying all similar things because they're afraid of being judged by their side or society at large.

I still try to be nice when I'm anonymous but, more importantly, I'm comfortable sharing what I think only when I'm anonymous.

I don't want to link my political views to my name, I don't want my well paying employer to know I'm not as woke as them.


It is unfortunate that people have to self-censor like this! You shouldn't have to, but that's not your fault.

I feel the opposite though. Anonymity is key, especially if you're not well protected. You can be the nicest guy in the world, but if you ever step out of line once and the wrong person decides that you're his target today, there you go.

You are absolutely correct.

To be honest, what I do does not work for the vast majority of people, and even though I do it, it does make me nervous.

But one big reason I still do it is that the current culture thinks I am a terrible person anyway, so they are not going to think worse of me.

I have already been the target of collective vitriol once, when I spoke against one particular Open Source project rewriting in Rust.

So I have already weathered such a storm, which means I can do it again if I become someone's new target of the week.

Can everyone do that? I don't think so. So yeah, you are absolutely 100% correct.

(Side note: that experience with Rust has pushed me away from Rust, period. I don't want to be part of a community that does that. I know the Rust maintainers don't like that culture either, so I don't blame them. But it still exists, so Rust doesn't seem like a community that would want me in it.)


>> Attaining celebrity status may make you rich, but at what cost?

"I always want to say to people who want to be rich and famous: 'try being rich first'. See if that doesn't cover most of it". -- Bill Murray


This provides a bit of insight into what life as a celebrity might be like. And the more famous, the worse it would be. Imagine never knowing if you’re safe going anywhere. You could be fine, or you could come across a stalker fan or a disturbed person with a knife.

I’m not sure I understand why people would violently react to a picture of a typewriter. If these same people saw a young kind with an original game boy would the urge be to punch them. Nor do I see how it’s ironic. The only real irony being that people who are striving for online attention are enraged when perceiving someone else as trying to get attention. It’s seems anytime I hear or read the word “ironic” it’s used in some novel way and is impossible to get a read on what it means in any given context.

“Hipster”, “ironic” and “pretentious” seem all to be very slippery words that are really just a judgements of how “normal” or not something is. It smacks of assimilate or die. Which are typically a projection of how little that person values their own life and how easily shaken they are by someone not make if their same choices. It’s no real wonder to me that a hyper-competitive culture would bring about this sort of behavior though.


Years ago, I met a performer at an event who sat there and ground a key for you. The key wasn't for a lock, it was a unique artifact they made just for you. It took about 10-15 mins, and they just sat and spoke with you while they ground the key.

It was a soothing experience, and I kept that key around for a very long time.


I remember seeing either the original Reddit post or a reference to it and thinking it was a really neat idea. I collect typewriters and had a slim portable Royal Hermes that would have been perfect for that kind of job, but I wasn't (and still am not) brave enough about my writing to share it in that way.

My friend's roommate dated him and I used to hang out at their place a lot in Brooklyn. Super nice guy! It was in the years after this happened, and he was still typing stories for strangers. I respected that then, and I continue to now.

I was lucky enough to get actual death threats due to stuff I posted online (it involved Saudi Sheiks and was almost 20 years ago you won't find it, it doesn't matter).

They (not the Sheik some other random people from the internet) had looked up my address in the Upper East side from DNS records and sent me an email along the lines of 'I know where you live and I'm going to come over and kill you'.. I dunno something like that. I had a small kid at the time. Freaked me the f out.

Anyway, I did nothing. Nothing happened. I also got threatened by the fancy lawyer of a rich Sheik. Did nothing to take the content down. Again nothing.

Lesson I take from this is to not let threats get to you too much, that the internet's bark can be worse than it's bite. Except, of course, for the poor souls for whom this is not true. YMMV I guess.


Anybody in this situation needs to hear Weezer's song "Pork and Beans".

I'm making a game around the pretense that people would enjoy watching someone do this online. It's cool that people are into it in person.

https://store.steampowered.com/app/1537490/Tentacle_Typer/


I guess it's a label that will be applied if you're doing something you want, just for the hell of it, without making it look cool. the people that are super conscious about themselves and how they present themselves cannot accept it.

>> Someone with the user handle “S2011” summed up the thoughts of the hive mind in 7 words: “Get the fuck out of my city.”

Oh, that must be the mayor of NY?


(2013)

One of my favourite articles on the internet


Wow, that was a great read! Thanks for sharing!

That's a great reminder that the internet is full of cowardly bullies. They don't actually want to understand things, they just want to tear other people down to make themselves feel better.

A positive outcome of this was that these people dialed down their rage when the person in the photo commented. Before that however, they were still perfectly willing to expend a lot of angry energy trying to eviscerate the person they had created in their minds.

Hmm... I like how you center on "don't want to understand things". It's a LOT harder to hate something you understand, especially when it comes to people.

I'd quibble on the final part though: they do it not to make themselves feel better (that is simply not possible), but to justify feeling bad about themselves and not wanting to admit it. It's quite narcissistic.


I think it's also just a product of the hivemind and people not thinking. Not realizing that there is a real person in that picture. Causes normal people to be asses without thinking. As evidenced by the fact that the tone of the conversation changed when he responded.

[flagged]


You could always disrupt bullying when you see it. A lot of people would be grateful and you're less likely to go to jail.

[flagged]


>Scene, hipster, emo, goth, etc. all but disappeared.

I don't know where you have been for over the past 5 years, but not only did some of those not disappear, they had a massive resurgence (in the US/Canada, at least).

"Emo rap" has been all the hotness over the past 5 years, just look at artists like Lil Uzi Vert or Frank Ocean. Skrillex, one of the most successful producers and artists of our time, went back to his original emo rock band and recorded a single with them to a wide applause. Goth-related discussions have seen continuous increase in numbers on social media.

>Most of the people who would have fallen in one of the aforementioned groups a decade ago are now non-binary, gender fluid, etc.

I don't see how those things are mutually exclusive. Plenty of non-binary/genderfluid/etc. people would count themselves as a part of those groups, just like cis/straight people would.

I will give it to you with scene and hipsters disappearing, but "hipster" as a term has been used almost always with negative connotations (as others in this thread have pointed out already the specifics of why people scoffed at "hipsters" as used the term as an insult). Even at the peak of popularity of that term, I don't recall almost anyone using it to refer to themselves, though this point is entirely subjective and anecdotal on my end.

The point you were trying to make would have been indeed interesting to look into, if the reality matched a bit closer with what you were claiming was happening to those emo/goth/etc. groups.


>I don't know where you have been for over the past 5 years, but not only did some of those not disappear, they had a massive resurgence (in the US/Canada, at least).

They definitely almost disappeared, but had a small resurgence, not massive.

>"Emo rap" has been all the hotness over the past 5 years, just look at artists like Lil Uzi Vert or Frank Ocean. Skrillex,

This is hilariously wrong, nowhere near reality. Frank Ocean doesn't have a single reference to "emo" anything on his Wikipedia page. Skrillex is solidly EDM/dubstep, not emo.

>Skrillex, one of the most successful producers and artists of our time, went back to his original emo rock band and recorded a single with them to a wide applause.

That barely made a blip, not even 3 million listens on YouTube and Soundcloud.

>I don't see how those things are mutually exclusive. Plenty of non-binary/genderfluid/etc. people would count themselves as a part of those groups, just like cis/straight people would.

The entire non-binary wave didn't really come about until the outlets of being emo/scene/goth ran out. Being non-binary in 2018 was the same as being emo/goth/scene in 2008.

>The point you were trying to make would have been indeed interesting to look into, if the reality matched a bit closer with what you were claiming was happening to those emo/goth/etc. groups.

It has matched reality, almost to the T. Frank Ocean being emo is not reality.


I don't know if the connection is that direct or causal, but I'm NB and went through a punk/goth phase in high school, and part of the appeal was that it's an "acceptable" way to be gender non-conforming. (At least within that particular subculture.)

Having a name for something can be powerful.


The topic's getting you downvoted, but this perspective suddenly makes a lot of what my wife's observed among middle-schoolers in the last 3-4 years make a ton more sense.

It's no longer as socially-acceptable to bully strangers for being “weirdos”. Is that it?

> Scene, hipster, emo, goth, etc. all but disappeared.

Have you not noticed what's replaced these? We have hundreds of subcultures: weebs, dank memers, bronies, demoscene, lifehackers, outside, Bitcoin, competitive Pokémon… What you're seeing is a change in who you're bullying, not a change in reality.


>It's no longer as socially-acceptable to bully strangers for being “weirdos”. Is that it?

Not at all. People/children still bully each other, always have, always will. Now they can easily bully each other through social media, relentlessly.

>Have you not noticed what's replaced these? We have hundreds of subcultures: weebs, dank memers, bronies, demoscene, lifehackers, outside, Bitcoin, competitive Pokémon… What you're seeing is a change in who you're bullying, not a change in reality.

You may have missed the "etc." part of my original post. Weebs, bronies, Pokemon/gamers, etc. were all alive and well during the scene/emo/etc. times, they weren't "replaced", they live concurrently.

Something else is going on, but it's definitely not "bullying is no longer socially-acceptable". It hasn't been "socially-acceptable" for decades at this point.


> Something else is going on

Scenes require supporting media. In the age of print and broadcast, access to media was comparably limited. Consequently, the number of scenes was comparably limited. The "something" that happened was the general public learning how the internet could be used to easily publish media for as many scenes as people could think of. It's now feasible for individuals to globally publish media regardless of how many other people are interested in it.


>Scenes require supporting media. In the age of print and broadcast, access to media was comparably limited. Consequently, the number of scenes was comparably limited.

If anything, it's the complete reverse. Scenes were more localized and had many different variations and unique cultures.

> The "something" that happened was the general public learning how the internet could be used to easily publish media for as many scenes as people could think of.

Which lead to a great consolidation, something we see in other areas as well. Regional cultures become less and less stark as national TV/news came about.

>It's now feasible for individuals to globally publish media regardless of how many other people are interested in it.

Which means the other scenes die out, and a predominant one appears. That's why you see flags and pronouns all across Twitter, but nothing much else. It's also why American culture is being exported globally, destroying unique cultures in its wake.


I've changed my mind in favour of this explanation. I knew “the internet” had something to do with it, but I thought it was about socialisation; the cultural artefacts explanation neatly explains internet memes, too, so it's probably more right.

> Something else is going on,

Large groups have broken into smaller groups because people are less required to be a part of a large group to be accepted.


>Large groups have broken into smaller groups because people are less required to be a part of a large group to be accepted.

I'd say the opposite: disparate groups have ceased to exist as they got consolidated into the larger group. You see this more often across all cultures as the information age has come around.


There are plenty of new ones all the time; egirls, fuckboys, vsco girls, streamers, influencers, incels, you can also be "basic", "based", etc... it's possible you're not seeing it as much because you're getting older and these are adolescent tribes

> There are plenty of new ones all the time; egirls, fuckboys, vsco girls, streamers, influencers, incels, you can also be "basic", "based", etc... it's possible you're not seeing it as much because you're getting older and these are adolescent tribes

Most of those are not new... "egirls", fuckbois, etc. were all around back then as well. These groups are somewhat non-related, since many of the listed groups are not mutually exclusive. You can have a fuckboi influencer, vsco egirls, etc.


tl;dr: people jumped to conclusions from a photo presenting someone out of context.

Social media is primarily a way for people to express their emotions. Hate is an emotion. This stuff is not any more complicated than that.

Typewriter in a public park? How about a backpack with an old school rotary desk phone, an analog to SIP ATA that supports pulse dialing, a battery pack, and an opengear LTE network bridge/router? Set up a folding table somewhere and make and receive phone calls. Or pull the whole rig out on the countertop at a Starbucks and have an important business call.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/174796261408?hash=item28b2ab4820:g:...




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