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What did stupid people do before the internet?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Frebis, Aug 31, 2012.

  1. Frebis

    Frebis
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    Recently a friend of mine had a child that passed away. As one can expect a flood of comments with people expressing their condolences went up on his facebook wall. While looking at them, I became very sad, and not because of the death. Also because of the inappropriate use of the exclamation point!

    "RIP!"
    "Let me know if you need anything!"
    "My condolences!"
    "Will be preyin for yah!"
    "One day you will see her again in heaven!"

    The exclamation point is over used as is. But in cases of someone's child dying? Come on.

    Fifteen years ago I had no idea society as a whole was stupid, however reading the comments on almost anything on the internet really has opened up my eyes. People don't know the difference between 2, two, too and to. Any story on the internet that remotely involves a black person will bring the racists out of the woodwork. I just can't believe how dumb everyone is.

    Focus 1: Has your opinion of the intelligence of society as a whole increased or decreased in the age of the internet?
    Focus 2: Stories of people being idiots on the internet.
    You should know that I consider myself a low life because since I discovered the exclamation point condolence, I troll obituaries and dead people’s relatives facebook pages for a good laugh.
     
  2. D26

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    Focus 1: There are two reasons for stupidity on the internet. First and foremost are the trolls. These are the people who are bored and post obscene shit just to get a rise out of people. We have several of these around here, we're all familiar with trolling, so moving on.

    The second reason is a combination of group-think and anonymity. Lets take racism for example. Most people, in real life, are afraid to voice their opinion that anyone that isn't a white male is ruining America (or Canada, for you Canucks), but once they see someone on the internet say it, they can chime in and agree anonymously without worrying about their friends finding out they're members of the Kloset Klan. The internet provides the anonymity and the support they need to voice their incredibly stupid opinions that they would never ever dare to voice in real life, because they know the anonymity and support won't be there. The irony is that the first racist comment is probably a troll fucking with people, only to be followed by thirty or forty genuinely racist people who are agreeing with the first, trolling, post.

    Focus 2: Anyone who posts political shit on Facebook. Shut the fuck up, I don't care. I have at least half of my friends list blocked so I don't see their inane chatter about how this candidate or that candidate is going to "totally destroy America!" Funny story: did you know that every single American political candidate in the last twenty years has had the singular goal of destroying America? You'd think this country would be dead by now...
     
  3. Crown Royal

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    Focus 1:

    THIS place, and the defunct RMMB proved to me that there are funny witty people out there that are worth talking to and getting opinions from.

    Every. Single. Other. Board: Morons. Legions and legions of fucking morons that should be stripped of their voting rights because of their utter retardation. From trolls to cowardly racists to people who use abbreviations because typing takes too much effort, the internet has all but utterly proven that we are completely surrounded by stupid people.

    Here, we are the what Philalawyer once called "The Ten Percent". The one out of every ten people that are worth knowing. Everybody else can fuck off.
     
  4. ghettoastronaut

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    I used to think I was smart and everyone else was stupid. Then I read about the Dunning-Kruger effect and shut my wise ass mouth.
     
  5. lust4life

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    It's about the same. What the internet has done is provided a forum for greater connectivity with people we otherwise wouldn't have encountered. In other words, it's increased the sample size so we're exposed to a larger number of people across all points of the intelligence spectrum. I think those at the lower end tend to stand out more because their exhibited stupidity is hard to ignore (paging Millie), often goes viral, and they get cyber-pounced. It's also a much larger resource for the display of acts of stupidity, both self-posted as well as by third parties.

    Society has always had it's share of stupid, we just get to see a lot more of it.
     
  6. effinshenanigans

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    To a lot of people, the internet is like a giant bullhorn that someone left on the street with a sign that says, "You can yell anything you want with no consequences." So they pick it up and start blabbering away without a care in the world--because the sign said they could.

    But it's worse than that, because while they may get punched in the face yelling in the street, the internet provides them with the illusion of protection. There's a vast divide between the words they say and the people who receive them. It supercedes anonymity, too, because stupid people post stupid things on Facebook all the time, and that's directly connected to their name and/or face. I've actually heard one guy say to another in a bar, "Dude, you can't get made at me for that. I said it on Facebook."

    When you give people the illusion of such absolute protection, chances are they're going to say a lot of dumb shit.

    Regarding things like grammar and spelling, in an age when everything is auto-corrected and quick "texting talk" has become a popular form of communication, it doesn't surprise me that certain things have bled over. That doesn't make me want to punch someone in the face who says "Obvi" any less, I just understand why it's become so easy for them to be a simpleton.
     
  7. JoeCanada

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    Who am I: "Neil Armstrong? Pff, everybody knows the moon landing was a hoax..." "Moon landing? Yeah right, it was just staged in a Northern Arizona warehouse." "Guys! Hey guys! Guys? Guys are you listening? The moon landing was fake, Neil Armstrong was such a fag..."


    Focus 2: It's not so much stupid as gullible I guess, but all those posts on facebook of "This baby has face cancer! For every share, 3 cents will be donated to buy her a new face..." The worst part was that it wasn't even just old people I saw sharing, it was people my age as well.
     
  8. AlmostGaunt

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    I actively lose faith in humanity every time I read the comments on youtube. Some days they actually frighten me with the idea that these people can vote.

    On the upside, on the rare moment that someone posts a comment that's both intelligent and funny, I feel like Aladdin finding a diamond in the rough.
     

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  9. archer

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    This.

    TiB is the only forum i can handle for more than 10 minutes.

    Focus 2: Im a gamer so sometimes i have to visit gaming forums to sort an issue out or get some advice. All gaming forums are pretty bad but any FPS game forum is a total clusterfuck of idiocy, racism and trolls.

    COD Black Ops was a prime example. You could design your own in game emblem using layers. Obviously it took about 10 seconds for fuckwads to create swastikas, they let it run for a while then put out a statement specifically banning the swastika (even though it was already covered under the offensive images clause) and then started banning players who had it.

    From that point on the forums were just filled with people complaining they had been banned for no reason. The arguments these people were trying to put forward for why they should be allowed a swastika emblem were unbelievable:
    - Freedom of Speech (got to be the most abused and least understood of your amendments)
    - My grandfather was a nazi (but a good guy) and im honoring his war service (this was a great one, a Dev actually jumped into the thread and said he could keep his swastika emblem if he put one on his arm and walked through a Black neighborhood and survived... he never posted again and i sincerely hoped he had taken up the devs offer)
    - Its an ancient Buddhist symbol!@!!11! not a swastika (yes, the Buddhists apparently used it rotated at a 45 degree angle on a red and white background)
    - Nazis aren't illegal in America, our local neo-nazi chapter had a parade the other day! (which no doubt had been heavily protected by the police)

    People actually had to explain why a Swastika is an offensive image to these people. Really? I actually hope most if not all were trolls, because if the amount of people posting that shit were genuine i would lose all faith in humanity.
     
  10. kuhjäger

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    I think the thing that fascinates me most about the internet is the fact that there can be a flamewar about anything. Which pie is better, hard vs soft bristles on a tooth brush. You name it, and somewhere in the maze of electrons bandying about there are bitter words and death threats about whether you should make a pie crust by hand or use a Cuisnart.
     
  11. iczorro

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    Focus 1: People have always been morons and geniuses. The internet has simply brought sharp relief and glaring obstinacy to both sides.

    Don't forget about peeing over the waistband or through the fly, as well as toilet paper roll over or under...
     
  12. Noland

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    If your opinions of how stupid society is is based on the internet then just stay inside and cradle that belief to your chest because reality is much worse.

    Yesterday I tried to explain the complexities of the Internal Revenue Code and what the concept of "before taxes" means to a guy who firmly believed that a 401K was so named because you cannot put more than $401,000 into it. Sadly I failed and he walked away with that belief firmly planted in his head. My only consolation is that he will never manage to save more than $401,000, so it doesn't really matter.
     
  13. iczorro

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    Everyone's stupid in their own way. At a party last weekend I met a girl who had never heard of "Back to the Future".

    I mean, I guess lack of basic world knowledge is stupider than lack of pop knowledge, but I was still put off...
     
  14. Dmix3

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    To be fair that sounds like it could be more of an age thing then sheer stupidity. I didn't even think about shit like this til a friend of mine last week made me feel old as hell by telling me that this year's group of incoming college freshman never lived in a world where Kurt Cobain was alive. Let that one sink in a minute...
     
  15. The Village Idiot

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    The Coach comes into the locker room and says to the star running back 'You're ignorant, and apathetic." The running back responds "Coach, I don't know what that means and I don't care.

    Ultimately, a lot of what is put down as 'stupidity' is nothing more than ignorance. What the internet was supposed to do was increase the dialogue among normal, average everyday citizens.

    And in a horrifying twist of fate, it has done exactly that.

    People complain about the new generation and youth in general, but the fact is while we claim we're all for increased education, the reality is we're only for a very specific type of education. That specific type of education is any subject that can be reduced to numbers and metrics so that it can be 'qualitatively measured.' Words and ideas are not able to be judged that way, so we (and I mean America) tends to ignore these as important subjects because you can't make a standardized test out of someone's ability to respond to an argument, or draft a coherent thought that doesn't fit in the character limit of twitter with a bunch of 'lol.'

    Ignorance is nothing new. The exposure of it at this level is what the internet has showed us. And frankly, it makes me very sad. I don't feel superior to these people, I feel inferior for playing a part in a society that leaves these people to a fate of ignorance.

    /steps down off of soap box, trips, heads to hospital and euthanized to the great delight of everyone whom read the above.
     
  16. iczorro

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    This year's college freshmen only know OJ as a guy that was randomly put in jail. Not even as a murderer, as a kidnapper. And they have zero idea that he was in movies, or that he used to be one of the greatest running backs of all time...
     
  17. iczorro

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    This is true in a good way in the case of every fuckin wiki out there, not to mention the several intelligent messageboards out there (spoiler alert, we're not the only smart people on the internet).

    I think you meant quantitatively measured, or else your whole argument makes no sense. If things were based on quality, we'd have a happy utopia (redundant?)

    Ok, if I understand what you're saying, you can't base America's intelligence on standardized testing. I agree. I think you give them whatever tests you want, and let real life shake them out. We'll find out who's good and who's not, just like now...

    See, I guess I'm an optimist. I don't disparage the internet for how many trolls, posers and fakes it's brought us. I praise it for how many geniuses have been able to share thoughts. For how many people have learned anything about anything from google and wikipedia (right or wrong, at least they can back up their argument). I love it for cat videos and <a class="postlink" href="http://www.thechive.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.thechive.com</a> If/when I have kids, they won't know a non-internet age, so I say we make it better...
     
  18. The Village Idiot

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    Nor was I implying such. The point of the thread was stupidity on the internet, and I was responding to that focus.

    Yes, my mistake, I did mean 'quantitatively.'

    That's just my point, you're not really shaking out 'who's good and who's not' based on judging people's intelligence on their internet persona. My whole point is that the internet generally requires writing and responding to arguments, or posting comments, etc. Doing so requires language skills, and just because someone isn't very adept at using words doesn't mean they're stupid. It could be, but given the sheer amount of poorly worded posts, comments, etc. (mine included) I see, I am supposing that there is something bigger going on than just plain ol' 'look at all the stupid people.'

    I'm not disparaging the internet at all. I like the internet, I think there are a lot of great things on the internet. My only point is as a vehicle it has exposed an awful lot of ignorance that some chalk up to overwhelming stupidity whereas I think it exposes a lot of ignorance, which is a sadder turn of events in my mind.
     
  19. iczorro

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    I agree with everything you said there, I just believe that that ignorance was always there, and exposing people that are ignorant is one of the good things that it has brought about. Can anyone take Dimeo seriously in any capacity anymore? How many people would have known about the Jersey Shore cast's retardedness without the internet?

    At the same time we have Mars Rover "Curiosity" becoming a meme. How many people watch the news any more? Would they have even known that was going on if it wasn't on here?

    My point is that the Focus of this thread is balanced. Lots of good, lots of retards. I'm willing to suffer the retards for the good.
     
  20. Frebis

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    Anyone that has watched the TV show? If you need the internet to know those guys are retarded, you may very well be one of the ignorant.