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 Posted:   Dec 15, 2013 - 10:50 PM   
 By:   Senn555   (Member)

An excellent anecdote from someone I regard highly.



On the way back from some chores, I was doing a little tweeting on my phone. I cracked a joke— admittedly a corny one— and one of my Twitter followers responded with a variant of that ever-popular quip, ‘[x] is bad and you should feel bad’— specifically, stating that my joke was bad.

Attempting to appear unruffled, I immediately tweeted back, ‘umad?’

Then it hit me.

I have bemoaned, for a long time, the fact that my beloved fan culture tolerates— and even defends as something not worth worrying about— the presence of thieves, liars, rapists, paedophiles, and bigots. Even worse, those who complain about said people are vilified as ‘social justice warriors’ (in more polite company), ‘white knights’, or— as 4chan puts it (trigger warning: slurs!)— ‘moralfags’. At best, those who complain about such things are ignored; at worst, they are subjected to mockery and even worse.

All of this is easily explicable once you realise that the goal in the Internet community at large isn’t to be a good person— it’s to be a chill person. (I’d say that this applies to the “real world” outside the Internet as well, but on the Internet it’s practically religion.) If you get your jimmies rustled, if you get “butthurt”, if “u” in fact are “madbro”, you lose social capital. The most beloved people are those who never get upset; the most reviled are those who are angry. It really doesn’t matter what they are angry about; it’s the anger itself that the net finds abhorrent.

In the near-future of Cory Doctorow’s “Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom”, there exists a system of social capital called “whuffie”, which has essentially replaced currency. Those with high “whuffie” are respected; those with low “whuffie” are essentially shiftless bums.

I would argue that in the system of social capital we (“we” here meaning “the collective consciousness of the United States, and in particular of American Internets users”) are building, instead of earning capital by being excellent to each other, you earn capital by just not giving a fuck.

Call it “chill”. The more chill you are, the more highly regarded you are on the Internet. And this is precisely why those pesky Social Justice (“SJ”) types are so disliked in Internet culture: They’re angry. They complain. They’re perceived as screechy and strident— utterly dissonant to the ‘net’s dominant culture of I Just Don’t Give A Fuck And Neither Should You.

4chan itself is the ultimate distillation of this culture, of course, but its values have slowly diffused throughout the entire Internet. The 4channification of modern online culture has led to the present zeitgeist in which the quickest way to put yourself into the social-capital poorhouse is to complain— even if your complaint is completely valid, backed by evidence, and on an extremely serious topic like theft or rape or bigotry.

In a sense, this can be viewed as a sort of perverted echo of the values of the 1960s— a twisted revival in which our culture has resurrected the “be cool, man” vibe while completely forgetting the serious and necessary social activism which was another hallmark of that long-bygone era. We’re too busy smoking our virtual bongs and patting ourselves on the back to put up with any of that protest-movement crap.

This culture isn’t limited simply to ordinary members of Internet culture. Even people in positions of significance within Internet subcultures follow the values of Chill Über Alles.

For instance: When the SJ people pointed out to the organisers of one convention that an admitted rapist was on the staff of their parent group and planning on attending their next major event, the response was a half-hearted shrug with a farcical appeal to a “legal team” (as if it was somehow illegal for a private event to ban an individual). It took significant and coordinated social activism— culminating in a petition signed by hundreds— to finally get any action, and even then the convention didn’t make a public statement on the matter, probably fearing bad PR from offending the rapist’s friends and his many defenders (!).

Another example: When I complained to my successors on the staff of a good-sized convention of a known paedophile/ephebophile (he’d been banned from a meetup group for hitting on an underaged girl— cheating on his wife while doing so), their response, too, amounted to an elaborate shrug. They were terrified to ban this individual, as doing so would rock the boat. Their concept of “fairness” put the rights of a creepy paedo over the well-being of the con-going public (and, in specific, the safety of underaged females).

A third and final example: When I pointed out that the organisers of a different convention had committed acts of theft, violation of privacy, and incited a virulent transphobic campaign of hatred against me, not merely the organisers of that convention but those of other conventions took it upon themselves to try to shut me up, including publically shaming me— lecturing me, even, using my first name rather than my fandom name— for having the unmitigated gall to inform the public that wrongdoing had occurred. When I warned the company who holds the IP underlying our fandom that they were sending Guests of Honour to a convention run by criminals and demagogues, not one but three other convention heads (none involved with said trashy convention) were so enraged that they actually sent me a signed letter (complete with very official-looking scanned signatures) informing me (in a very official and curt manner) that they were pulling out of an Internet streaming show I was about to hold with their representatives. My activism against some very bad people resulted in my deliberate punishment by the current standard-bearers of the con scene.

I’d like to end by pointing out some of the real-world consequences of this modern “chill culture”. Specifically, I have been upset for a long time by the slow speed of the LGBT rights movement, particularly in the United States. I think I know now why it’s been so slow. America is an increasingly Internet-heavy culture— and on the Internet, giving a crap is irritating… and actually getting angry about injustice is disgusting. That’s why there have been no widespread, 60s-style protests in favour of LGBT rights. That’s why LGBT people still can’t marry in most states, and it’s still legal in dozens of states to fire someone for being gay or trans. And by even pointing this out, I lose social capital— because I’ve shown that my jimmies have, in fact, been rustled.




http://prpltnkr.tumblr.com/post/32369131727/troll-nation-the-cult-and-culture-of-chill

 
 Posted:   Dec 15, 2013 - 11:42 PM   
 By:   Josh Mitchell   (Member)



I know a man
Who doesn't have many friends
I know a place he lives
Where trouble never ends
I know its hard for him
To read 'tween the lines
And his days are getting so much shorter

He simply turns away
And dons a bitter frown
His world is crumbling
His ship is weighted down
He doesn't care
As long as he can wear the crown
I know this man all too well

It's my poor friend me
A portrayal of the great dichotomy
It's my poor friend me
And I'm running out of steam

I know there are people
Who are cynical and vain
They point their finger
'cuz they can't accept the blame
They live their lives
Under a blanket of shame and their progeny
Crawl from underneath it

Lately I've come
To see the solution
And it begins with me
But I'm so fallibly human
I've picked the lock
But will not turn the key

Of people running scared
We live, breathe and die
Off to a world, our time is slipping on by
We have solutions, but don't even try
And I feel I know just who to blame

It's my poor friend me
A reminder of a tragic history
It's my poor friend me
And I'm running out of steam

 
 Posted:   Dec 15, 2013 - 11:57 PM   
 By:   Dana Wilcox   (Member)

Man, I'd be getting the hell out of that group!

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 12:01 AM   
 By:   Michael24   (Member)

Is 4chan really that big and influential? I'd never even heard of the place until maybe a few years ago, and nobody I know has ever heard of it, either.

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 12:30 AM   
 By:   Senn555   (Member)

Man, I'd be getting the hell out of that group!

Leaving a place one has every right to be in while the rest pollute the environment with their toxic is basically saying "I don't want to make this place better for myself and everyone else, and I don't want to shame those who did wrong and deserve to be outed", essentially throwing up the white flag by allowing the bullies to win and consume it all.

I am *not* going to allow that to happen so long as I'm around.

What's worse is that the "chill" people are advocating the behavior of the bullies by refusing to intervene. They might as well be cheering them on and egging the victims by remaining neutral by default. You don't show up to the scene of a crime as an officer and *not* interrogate the witnesses who saw it happen and didn't do squat.

So while I hold zero respect for bullies, I similarly want nothing to do with bystanders who won't help fend them off because they care more about their own social standing than maintaining a happy and welcoming environment.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 2:38 AM   
 By:   Michael24   (Member)

Haha!! Just noticed I made Senn's Facebook list. I feel so honored to be part of something so utterly funny, but pointless. big grin

"Let's see if you're still LOL'ing now."

As you can see, I just did. smile Because I simply find it amusing that you take the time to compile posts about people and put them on your Facebook, as if you think you're alerting society to something important, when instead you could use that time and energy to put toward something meaningful and productive regarding stuff you do like. Frankly, actively following the people you don't like and looking for what they say about it pretty stalkerish.

(Also misogynist, as indicated by your profile: "Interests: Jennifer Love Hewitt")

LOL!! It's misogynistic to express that you have what is essentially a harmless schoolyard crush on someone? Seriously... LOL!!! big grin

Leaving a place one has every right to be in while the rest pollute the environment with their toxic is basically saying "I don't want to make this place better for myself and everyone else, and I don't want to shame those who did wrong and deserve to be outed", essentially throwing up the white flag by allowing the bullies to win and consume it all.

And there's nothing wrong with that. Sometimes, you just have to know when to walk away.

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 4:16 AM   
 By:   Francis   (Member)

Haha!! Just noticed I made Senn's Facebook list. I feel so honored to be part of something so utterly funny, but pointless. big grin

"Let's see if you're still LOL'ing now."

As you can see, I just did. smile Because I simply find it amusing that you take the time to compile posts about people and put them on your Facebook, as if you think you're alerting society to something important, when instead you could use that time and energy to put toward something meaningful and productive regarding stuff you do like. Frankly, actively following the people you don't like and looking for what they say about it pretty stalkerish.

(Also misogynist, as indicated by your profile: "Interests: Jennifer Love Hewitt")

LOL!! It's misogynistic to express that you have what is essentially a harmless schoolyard crush on someone? Seriously... LOL!!! big grin


You can't help but to laugh at it really, I'm sure I've made his list as well when I addressed his sexual frustrations (and I suspect genuine misandry) and when I see him call you a misogynist for having a crush on an actress, it's beyond silly. I feel sad for the guy for being on a quest for tolerance by intolerance, and playing the victim card routinely to justify his own questionable behavior. I don't care if he posts his MLP ost requests, but his crusade against his blacklist members is as much laughable as it is tiresome and in recent weeks I've only seen him post to stir the pot, I imagine to get more quotes for his FB page and to keep himself convinced his silly crusade is justified in some weird way.

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 6:58 AM   
 By:   solium   (Member)

While there are many thought provoking ideas in Senn555 post, the problem here is two fold. This board is not the place for debating social behavior of this magnitude. Best go to forums that openly wish to discuss such ideas on an intellectual level.

Second by cramming every conceivable hot topic into the argument comes across as piling it on, preachy and disingenuous. It reads more like a post who's intention are to push buttons and rally people up. Stick to a point and present it as a question, and you might get a better response.

 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 7:29 AM   
 By:   Dana Wilcox   (Member)

Man, I'd be getting the hell out of that group!

Leaving a place one has every right to be in while the rest pollute the environment with their toxic is basically saying "I don't want to make this place better for myself and everyone else, and I don't want to shame those who did wrong and deserve to be outed", essentially throwing up the white flag by allowing the bullies to win and consume it all.

I am *not* going to allow that to happen so long as I'm around.

What's worse is that the "chill" people are advocating the behavior of the bullies by refusing to intervene. They might as well be cheering them on and egging the victims by remaining neutral by default. You don't show up to the scene of a crime as an officer and *not* interrogate the witnesses who saw it happen and didn't do squat.

So while I hold zero respect for bullies, I similarly want nothing to do with bystanders who won't help fend them off because they care more about their own social standing than maintaining a happy and welcoming environment.


Ah, now I get it. All of you, friend and foe, chained together in happy victimhood like the dancers in Ogden Nash's "A Tale of the 13th Floor":

It was cheap cigars like lurid scars
That glowed in the rancid gloom,
The murk was a-boil with fusel oil
And the reek of stale perfume.
And round and round there dragged and wound
A loathsome conga chain,
The square and the hep in slow lock step,
The slayer and the slain...


Carry on, then.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 16, 2013 - 11:46 AM   
 By:   Kim Tong   (Member)

Haha!! Just noticed I made Senn's Facebook list. I feel so honored to be part of something so utterly funny, but pointless. big grin

"Let's see if you're still LOL'ing now."

As you can see, I just did. smile Because I simply find it amusing that you take the time to compile posts about people and put them on your Facebook, as if you think you're alerting society to something important, when instead you could use that time and energy to put toward something meaningful and productive regarding stuff you do like. Frankly, actively following the people you don't like and looking for what they say about it pretty stalkerish.

(Also misogynist, as indicated by your profile: "Interests: Jennifer Love Hewitt")

LOL!! It's misogynistic to express that you have what is essentially a harmless schoolyard crush on someone? Seriously... LOL!!! big grin


You can't help but to laugh at it really, I'm sure I've made his list as well when I addressed his sexual frustrations (and I suspect genuine misandry) and when I see him call you a misogynist for having a crush on an actress, it's beyond silly. I feel sad for the guy for being on a quest for tolerance by intolerance, and playing the victim card routinely to justify his own questionable behavior. I don't care if he posts his MLP ost requests, but his crusade against his blacklist members is as much laughable as it is tiresome and in recent weeks I've only seen him post to stir the pot, I imagine to get more quotes for his FB page and to keep himself convinced his silly crusade is justified in some weird way.


This is an excellent post.

 
 Posted:   Dec 21, 2013 - 11:47 PM   
 By:   Senn555   (Member)

The majority of the posts in this thread serve only to validate the original post rather than "arguing" against it.


"We need to be more tolerant of their intolerance!"

"No we don't. The likelihood of civil discourse actually changing the mind of a bigot is minuscule. About the only thing that will is contact theory. Public censure at least shuts them up a bit .

Bigots need to understand that there is no such thing as a right to validation, and silence is validation. When you realize you can't change the mind of a bigot, the impetus becomes to prevent other people from adopting the harmful belief. And under that notion, allowing rational debate with a stupid and irrational concept ends up elevating the bigotry by accident.

So the best thing to actually do is treat the bigotry as the stupid nonsense it is, full stop, and make sure everyone knows it. Bigots do not deserve a soapbox because you'll end up reaffirming the belief by accident."

 
 Posted:   Dec 21, 2013 - 11:55 PM   
 By:   Josh Mitchell   (Member)

Who are you quoting?

 
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