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Old 5th August 2018, 03:57 PM   #1
The Atheist
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It's Official: The Internet is The Worst Thing Ever

Having started off as seeing the internet as a fad that would fade away (apart from porno) then embracing it to the extent that I make all of my income through it, to now seeing it having taken over the world, I've finally reached the point where I think the internet is the invention of Satan.

Satan's rule is to divide and conquer - and it seems to me this has come to pass.

Douglas Adams had little time to invest in the internet before his death, but even in that short time, managed to get to the nub of the issue very quickly. Here is his view of what was happening: http://www.douglasadams.com/dna/19990901-00-a.html

I think the most important note in that is his quote from Risto Linturi, research fellow of the Helsinki Telephone Corporation, who says: "Pervasive wireless communication will bring us back to behaviour patterns that were natural to us and destroy behaviour patterns that were brought about by the limitations of technology."

Trouble is, the behaviour pattern that we're going back to is tribalistic, and that appears to be exactly what's driving the internet right now - from fights organised by schoolkids to far-right troll communities disrupting elections, these things are growing around tribalism - the idea that "our side" is better than "your side". It also seems that there are only two sides any more - one is right of Genghis Khan, the other left of Lenin, and the positions are becoming more entrenched as the rhetoric ramps up.

Yet, that is only one of the many problems the internet has created. Others include:

Porno

I'm on the fence as to whether it's good or bad, and am open to evidence, but allowing an almost-infinite expansion in the availability or porn without a clue as to what effects it might have seems a dangerous thing to do.

Wasting time

10 hours a day spent playing on a screen isn't achieving much. https://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/30/h...sen/index.html

I'd like to find some statistics on productivity per hour from 2000 - present, but it's proving difficult, and I need the numbers because, anecdotally, people are spending time on devices at work that has to reduce their profitability.

Misinformation

The internet has allowed exponential growth in conspiracies and pseudoscience. I don't know that the link between the ease of spreading false propaganda and the rise of antivaxers has been proven, but the numbers indicate an awfully strong link: https://www.vox.com/science-and-heal...movement-trump

Business/Education

While companies like Amazon & Google have risen on the back of the internet, and it enables efficiencies in accounting and other areas, I'm not convinced that overall, companies are more profitable as a result of the internet. The cost of security measures alone is more than most companies generate in additional profit from having internet-based commerce.

In education, the situation contains too many variables to say for sure that the cost outweighs the benefits, but a good example is my boy's primary school of 700 kids. They have two full-time IT workers, and I have yet to see any benefit from the school's connectivity. It doesn't seem to speed up or improve homework, and I don't see any way it saves teachers time, but it does mean they have two fewer teachers because the salaries go to a couple of backroom geeks.

Scams

This is the most human face of the harm, destroying lives and life savings - it's estimated that the UK alone is losing £10B a year: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-37677446

That number is increasing and is already about the same as the UK's estimated illegal drug trade, and about 1% of GDP: http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.u...-threats/drugs

On that basis, we're looking at internet crime being worth around $750B a year, being roughly 1% of world GDP: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gross_world_product

That's all money that wouldn't be leaving the system if the internet didn't exist.

Wankers

I don't even need to add Zuck into this list, because the growth of the internet has given us a large number of people with massive profiles who would otherwise never have been heard of:

Peter Thiel
Elon Musk
Martin Shkreli
John McAfee, to name a few.

tl;dr
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Old 5th August 2018, 04:13 PM   #2
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Old 5th August 2018, 04:21 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Douglas Adams had little time to invest in the internet before his death, but even in that short time, managed to get to the nub of the issue very quickly. Here is his view of what was happening: http://www.douglasadams.com/dna/19990901-00-a.html


This is such a fantastic quote:


Quote:
1) everything thatís already in the world when youíre born is just normal;

2) anything that gets invented between then and before you turn thirty is incredibly exciting and creative and with any luck you can make a career out of it;

3) anything that gets invented after youíre thirty is against the natural order of things and the beginning of the end of civilisation as we know it until itís been around for about ten years when it gradually turns out to be alright really.
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Old 5th August 2018, 04:24 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
They have two full-time IT workers, and I have yet to see any benefit from the school's connectivity. It doesn't seem to speed up or improve homework, and I don't see any way it saves teachers time, but it does mean they have two fewer teachers because the salaries go to a couple of backroom geeks.

Why did you feel the need to stereotype?

What evidence do you have that they quite literally took 2 of a finite number of salaries?
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Old 5th August 2018, 04:38 PM   #5
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I understand the frustration. I don't agree with it, but I understand it.
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Old 5th August 2018, 04:46 PM   #6
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The problem of the internet isn't the internet, it's that the internet exposes more of humanity to more of humanity. We're not evolved enough to interact on this scale, at these numbers, with this speed. We're our own worst enemy, and the internet just gives us more exposure.

But it also facilitates easier sex, shopping, and videos of dogs tasting lemons so it evens out. Seriously watch the dogs tasting lemons videos, hysterical.
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Old 5th August 2018, 05:04 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
... Seriously watch the dogs tasting lemons videos, hysterical.
Don't forget cats freaking over a cucumber.
Honestly though... has anyone figured what that's all about?
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Old 5th August 2018, 05:33 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
Why did you feel the need to stereotype?
You can't take a little mild humour with your posts?

Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
What evidence do you have that they quite literally took 2 of a finite number of salaries?
It's how NZ schools work - they are funded annually for the number of kids and the school decides how they spend the money.

Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
The problem of the internet isn't the internet, it's that the internet exposes more of humanity to more of humanity. We're not evolved enough to interact on this scale, at these numbers, with this speed. We're our own worst enemy, and the internet just gives us more exposure.
Bingo.

Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
But it also facilitates easier sex, shopping, and videos of dogs tasting lemons so it evens out.
I'm not convinced that balances the scales entirely.
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Old 5th August 2018, 06:21 PM   #9
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Another point I meant to add was radicalisation.

Do I need to spell out how people of all stripes are being radicalised from easily-spread propaganda and lies?

The school shooters encouraged by the Chans, ISIS wannabes radicalised by insane mullahs, the "incel" scum bragging about raping sluts...
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Old 5th August 2018, 07:38 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
You can't take a little mild humour with your posts?

Yes I can. I didn't see any.


But I do now:


Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
But it also facilitates easier sex, shopping, and videos of dogs tasting lemons so it evens out.

I'm not convinced that balances the scales entirely.

Quote fail.
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Old 5th August 2018, 07:46 PM   #11
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I can't access the link?
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Old 5th August 2018, 08:18 PM   #12
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I have heard that teachers are finding kids starting school who can barely talk. They spend too much time on computers
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Old 5th August 2018, 08:33 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by This is The End View Post
Quote fail.
An attribution fail, anyway.

Past edit time or I'd fix it, but the quote should be Tragic Monkey.

Originally Posted by wasapi View Post
I can't access the link?
Which one? They all work for me, so the urls are right.
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Old 5th August 2018, 10:46 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
You can't take a little mild humour with your posts?



It's how NZ schools work - they are funded annually for the number of kids and the school decides how they spend the money.



Bingo.



I'm not convinced that balances the scales entirely.
Quite frankly if you school has 2 full time computer techs for 700 kids then the school has crap management

In fact if they had one that is full time I'd argue they aren't much better

It would be brainier to contract out to call out support.

With funding it isn't just bums on seats. It obviously depends on decile as well
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Old 6th August 2018, 12:11 AM   #15
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When ignorance gets a powerful multiplier it never had before, look out.
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Old 6th August 2018, 12:37 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Jim_MDP View Post
Don't forget cats freaking over a cucumber.
Honestly though... has anyone figured what that's all about?
Doesn't work with our cat. She just looks at it and walks off.
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Old 6th August 2018, 05:15 AM   #17
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Quote:
It's Official: The Internet is The Worst Thing Ever
I'll offer my opinion as soon as I'm done reading it.
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Last edited by alfaniner; 6th August 2018 at 05:16 AM.
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Old 6th August 2018, 10:29 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by Jim_MDP View Post
Don't forget cats freaking over a cucumber.
Honestly though... has anyone figured what that's all about?
Yesterday I was hanging out with my brother and told him to Youtube dogs with lemons. We watched part of a compilation and he said, "Have you seen cats with cucumbers?" No. No, I haven't. So that was hilarious. I asked why the freak out and said he's read that they might think it's a snake (hard wired to be wary of thin, greenish things). Makes sense.
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Old 6th August 2018, 10:37 AM   #19
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I've recently joined the "Boston Terrier Addicts" group on Facebook. I have finally found a great use for the internet and Facebook - looking at pictures of Boston Terriers.

I can do this all day.
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Old 6th August 2018, 10:51 AM   #20
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I have absolutely no interest in youtube until I need to fix something. There is a video of just about every odd thing being fixed on youtube. It is crazy how I can just throw in a model number for just about anything in my house or garage and there will be a video of some guy who spent hours trying to figure out how to solve the very problem I have stumbled upon. I like that.
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Old 6th August 2018, 11:57 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Dr. Keith View Post
I have absolutely no interest in youtube until I need to fix something. There is a video of just about every odd thing being fixed on youtube. It is crazy how I can just throw in a model number for just about anything in my house or garage and there will be a video of some guy who spent hours trying to figure out how to solve the very problem I have stumbled upon. I like that.
^^This!
The wife always asks "how did you fix that?!" my response is always "I just know stuff."

Neighbor Bill fixed his slab foundation via youtube education. He's 62% thriftier, braver and handier than I am.
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Old 6th August 2018, 12:02 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Tony99 View Post
^^This!
The wife always asks "how did you fix that?!" my response is always "I just know stuff."

Neighbor Bill fixed his slab foundation via youtube education. He's 62% thriftier, braver and handier than I am.
My wife typically is the one making sure the volume is up on the iPad. She likes to add some helpful commentary like "I'm pretty sure he said DON'T adjust that part."
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Old 6th August 2018, 03:59 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
Another point I meant to add was radicalisation.

Do I need to spell out how people of all stripes are being radicalised from easily-spread propaganda and lies?

The school shooters encouraged by the Chans, ISIS wannabes radicalised by insane mullahs, the "incel" scum bragging about raping sluts...

Nothing that didn't happen elsewhere on an equivalent scale.

Want to know where ISIS, neo-Nazis, and other terrorist organizations get the majority of their recruits? Prisons. That's the primary pipeline for radicalization in much of the developed and developing world.

As for Incels, they have a new name, but I knew plenty of that sort growing up before the Internet, and few had any problems making their misogynistic self-importance known in person.
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Old 6th August 2018, 04:15 PM   #24
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The internet makes it easier for lonely people to get together and feel like a community, but there's a bad and a good side to that.
It does save on postage though.
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Old 6th August 2018, 04:29 PM   #25
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The Internet has a ways to go to rival the destructive track record of cars.

Sprawl, smog, greenhouse gases, depletion of fossil fuels, poor health from lack of exercise, landscapes paved over, town centers abandoned or turned inhospitable with incessant traffic, and outright deaths by the hundreds of thousands.

But while we're taking one-sided views of inventions, let's not forget television...
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Old 6th August 2018, 04:38 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Tony99 View Post
^^This!
The wife always asks "how did you fix that?!" my response is always "I just know stuff."

Neighbor Bill fixed his slab foundation via youtube education. He's 62% thriftier, braver and handier than I am.
I've made several repairs on my vehicle that I would have had no clue how to do without YT. Easily saved over 2 grand in total I'd estimate.
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Old 6th August 2018, 04:40 PM   #27
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Humbug I say. People were more intolerant, ignorant, bigoted, small-minded, a-holes before the internet came about.
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Old 6th August 2018, 04:52 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Myriad View Post
But while we're taking one-sided views of inventions, let's not forget television...
Until they make it holographic that's the only view you can take of it.

Dave
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Old 6th August 2018, 05:18 PM   #29
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It has an off button
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Old 6th August 2018, 05:24 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Dave Rogers View Post
Until they make it holographic that's the only view you can take of it.

That's true now, since all sets have become identical boring flat rectangles. But back when you could watch the tubes glowing in the back, that was often better entertainment than the programs.
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Old 6th August 2018, 06:09 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by luchog View Post
Nothing that didn't happen elsewhere on an equivalent scale.
I'll wait until I see some evidence to the contrary that it's both easier and more successful to spread radical views on the internet.

The sheer bandwidth available to fringe groups is far greater than ever before.

Originally Posted by luchog View Post
As for Incels, they have a new name, but I knew plenty of that sort growing up before the Internet, and few had any problems making their misogynistic self-importance known in person.
Known to how many people? You'd have to acknowledge they have far more reach on the internet than talking to people face to face.
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Old 6th August 2018, 07:25 PM   #32
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Ahhhhhhh! It's closing in on me.

First I innocently signed up for FaceBook and the next thing I know anytime I post a comment on a blog or news article, my full name goes on the comment, without ever asking me if I want to be connected to my FB account.

It's everywhere.

I paid my malpractice insurance online today. It was ridiculous logging in, I had to change my 'expired password' and then log in again and then wait for a second sign-in code to be sent to my email (I refused to give them my cell number). It's a malpractice site, who the hell is breaking into Mercer Insurance web sites?

Anyway, so after gawd knows how long I fussed with that (should have just written a damn check) they asked for feedback.

So, I diligently type in all the ridiculous steps it took to sign into my account thinking I was communicating with the insurance company.

Next thing I know they've simply put it on one of those, rate this business sites, with my full name, and thanking me for 'rating this business'. ******* bastards, they didn't say one thing about the feedback going on their for-profit-at-some-point-I'm-sure business rating web site.

******* ********. Get out of my face. I don't want to join the party.

Sorry, carry on. It seemed to go under the thread title.

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Old 6th August 2018, 10:29 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Sorry, carry on. It seemed to go under the thread title.
Fits fine - sounds like a fun day!

It also raises the point that so many systems rely on the internet and have no alternative when their system crashes, as happened in UK recently with one of the credit cards being unable to be used for most of a day.

20 years ago, you just get out the zip-zap machine and away you go. No power needed, even. Even if your machine broke, you could write the details in by hand.

It seems logical to me to keep a backup in case this exact thing happens.
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Old 7th August 2018, 01:11 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
It also raises the point that so many systems rely on the internet and have no alternative when their system crashes, as happened in UK recently with one of the credit cards being unable to be used for most of a day.

20 years ago, you just get out the zip-zap machine and away you go. No power needed, even. Even if your machine broke, you could write the details in by hand.
They haven't vanished completely. A few weeks ago I had cause to buy a train ticket from the guard on the Welsh Highland Railway, which travels through areas where the Internet has yet to penetrate, and he had a zip-zap machine at the ready. Unfortunately, his enthusiasm wasn't matched by his experience in using it, and I noticed him and an older guard at the end of the line trying to figure out how you got the two parts of it to go back together after he'd zipped with so much force that it wasn't able to zap any more. But they managed to take my money successfully, even though there wasn't a sniff of online connectivity.

Dave
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Old 7th August 2018, 02:42 AM   #35
The Atheist
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That's cool - I haven't heard of a shop that has one for years.

One of my jobs in a past life was delivering the machines to businesses who signed up to accept Visa.

Training was pretty simple.
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Old 7th August 2018, 10:42 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
That's cool - I haven't heard of a shop that has one for years.
My local Chinese take out restaurant used one a couple of years ago when their internet was down. I had to show the delivery driver how it worked.

Now they use an online system for taking orders and payment. The last time they had a technical problem is was the kitchen losing power ofter I had made an order. The online system was not impacted since the owner can see everything from his phone.
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Old 7th August 2018, 11:00 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
It also raises the point that so many systems rely on the internet and have no alternative when their system crashes, as happened in UK recently with one of the credit cards being unable to be used for most of a day.

That's not a failure of technology, that's a failure of management and IT staff competence.

It's not even remotely difficult to maintain disaster recovery backup systems and automatic failovers. But redundancy costs money, and few businesses, even megacorps, seem to want to pay the money to ensure that they are able to continue functioning in the case of a crash or other problem with the primary system.

I see that a lot in the medical industry where I work. Almost no one wants to spend the time and money to ensure that there is sufficient redundancy and disaster recovery in place for their patient-care-critical systems; and the few who do rarely maintain it properly. And then they get all flamingly angry at us when their system goes down and they lose patient and inventory data. Not our fault you're too cheap to invest in a proper backup system and process.
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Old 17th August 2018, 06:57 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by The Atheist View Post
The internet has allowed exponential growth in conspiracies and pseudoscience. I don't know that the link between the ease of spreading false propaganda and the rise of antivaxers has been proven, but the numbers indicate an awfully strong link: https://www.vox.com/science-and-heal...movement-trump

Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
The problem of the internet isn't the internet, it's that the internet exposes more of humanity to more of humanity. We're not evolved enough to interact on this scale, at these numbers, with this speed. We're our own worst enemy, and the internet just gives us more exposure.

The internet has overcome the barrier of 'herd immunity' to nonsense and weirdness:
Before the internet, the most extreme weirdoes were so few and far between that they'd probably never meet and establish their congregations. Nowadays, this barrier doesn't exist anymore.
Before the internet, these guys would never have met and hooked up.
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Old 17th August 2018, 08:12 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by dann View Post
Before the internet, the most extreme weirdoes were so few and far between that they'd probably never meet and establish their congregations. Nowadays, this barrier doesn't exist anymore.
I was discussing that very point only a couple of hours ago, using flat earthers as the example. Pre-internet, flat earthers existed, but they existed in a sole bubble, never daring to air their views in public.

Now, it's almost a badge of honour to be "brave" enough to share your thoughts on it.
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Old 17th August 2018, 11:19 PM   #40
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Before the internet, guys like Armin Meiwes and Bernd JŁrgen Armando Brandes didn't even exist, as such. Guys with those fantasies, yes, probably, but they would never have been consummated. (pun not intended!)
The internet was also a recruitment tool for the Heaven's Gate cult: Heaven's Gate 20 years later: 10 things you didn't know (Rolling Stone)
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"Stupidity renders itself invisible by assuming very large proportions. Completely unreasonable claims are irrefutable. Ni-en-leh pointed out that a philosopher might get into trouble by claiming that two times two makes five, but he does not risk much by claiming that two times two makes shoe polish." B. Brecht
"The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is required for their real happiness. The demand to give up the illusion about its condition is the demand to give up a condition which needs illusions." K. Marx
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