4chan Chronicle/Politicization

With the Internet becoming mainstream 4chan’s role in the new e-geopolitics was well defined. People from all the world would come to express their problems, desires or just to talk about normal things or things they wouldn’t normally talk about protected by the veil of anonymity. While not something new or negative in and on itself this would bring forth one of the most radical changes of /b/, and in a way 4chan: A relative disassociation from the Internet Culture that once gave it birth.

Culturally the average user of 4chan has radically changed his attitude. It has become much more sensitive, politicized and incapable of ignoring things it doesn’t like or enjoy, sometimes to the point of being humorless. They also became much more interested discussion, debate and creating content for the site. While not worse than the previous ages, 4chan lost some its passion for black comedy and transgression, and users take most things others say personally. Every thread has some form of antagonism by someone who didn’t like it. However the boards didn’t stop from creating their characteristic content, perhaps even more than the site ever did.


(Circa 2011)

A direct consequence of the Internet hitting the mainstream. As everyone is now connected, and communication – especially viral communication, has been facilitated by Twitter, the Internet has entered in an Age of Outrage. People would spend their free time arguing about politics and attacking each other over perceived transgression. To add to that, the popularization of Internet Culture is a byproduct of an overall trend the new tens was seeing, nerd culture was finding itself in a better light thanks to Big Bang Theory and superhero movies. By attaining mainstream appeal, nerd fandoms (and therefore boards such as /co/ and /v/) saw themselves under scrutiny of political opinions. The combination of mainstream and new tendencies in American youth created a new, Internet-born concept of social justice, which originated on sites like Tumblr and Something Awful, and to smaller degree, Reddit. In layman’s terms, Social Justice was mainly used to violently create a safe space by bullying everyone out of it. At worst, people who knew how to make friends would use their newfound moral authority to ruin the reputation of anyone that crossed them, generally using it as a means of abusing the social capital that comes with associating with that term. Many artists and people in a position of authority, began to claim social justice abuse to shut down anything they didn’t like, such as negative criticism or ideas they disagreed with. The movement is intrinsically tied to many elements of the old Internet. Something Awful; where Lowtax, who stopped caring about the site long ago, put a radical feminist as second in command, making the stupidly elitist, self-righteous and closed-minded community even more elitist and closed-minded. Two of the biggest exponents of the politicization of the site where GBS, their off-topic forum, and Laissez Faire, a comedy forum supposed to mock the far left. Eventually GBS had its own reactionary movement and purged itself of its leftists, while Laissez Faire was axed during a dispute with the userbase and the mods over a sister-forum dedicated to raids. The population of Laissez Faire associated with Weird Twitter, a pseudo-community of Twitter users dedicated to comedy. At the same time Weird Twitter discovered /r/ShitRedditSays, a small community about stupid or ignorant comments made by Redditors that managed to get upvoted, and proceed to influence it, enabling the creation of an hostile, intolerant cult mentality surrounding feminism that took over SRS and various other subreddits. At the same time Tumblr, the successor of BlogSpot, became the birthplace of a particularity insane breed of feminists dubbed “SJWs”, Social Justice Warriors. These people, usually LGBTs, rape and abuse victims, young girls that couldn’t deal with normal life and of course, idiots, preached very erratic ideas about political correctness, gender fluidity and self-victimization. Being the capital of all kinds of fandoms, 4chan’s media dedicated board /co/ suffered a great increase of far left users and SJWs, with all that it implicates. By 2012 /co/ became heavily populated with heavily politicized users forgetting many aspects of common 4chan culture. This saw a massive rise in the numbers of troll and reactionary threads as SJWs are physically unable to ignore any sort of bait, leading said threads to usually reach +300 posts.

On Abuses of Authority

Authority: The art of, given one’s influence, convince people to do what you want. As opposed to leadership (persuasion) and power (coercion)

On Tumblr's Influence

An example: 4chan has always had an example of black comedy towards black people, a “lol, niggers” attitude which, on its core, wasn’t really racist*. Many /co/ users completely forget about it and some even lash out against it. *This doesn’t mean there’s no racism on 4chan, it's been never accepted anywhere on 4chan except for /pol/