The Online: Increasingly Real or Unreal?

version

Well-known member
What's your sense of it at the moment? Does it feel like a concrete intrusion into your life or does it feel disconnected from your day to day? How much online influence do you sense in your immediate environment, in people's behaviours? Is this outweighed by the proliferation of fakes; fake products, fake stories, fake users?

I'm currently in the unreal camp. I use it a lot and talk to what I believe are real people on it, but the overall sensation is one of unreality. I don't feel much sense of a world behind the screen. There's a clear demarcation between what's on and offline and certain things appearing offline, someone using an online term, say, still feels like a character popping out of a film the way hearing someone say "lol" in a conversation in the 2000s did. It shouldn't be there.

I'm sure some will argue it's both, or neither, or too varied and sprawling to force such a distinction, but I think most of us will have a gut feeling one way or the other. Do you still feel you can dismiss things as "just idiots on Twitter", for example, or do you feel these things now exert too much influence to be completely waved away? Do you feel there's a distinction to be made between sections or layers of the online itself, say, a tool level, i.e. a level for shopping, research, banking and so on, a social level, i.e. a level for dating and social media, and a level for entertainment, i.e. journalism, media coverage, 'content'? If so, how separate do you see these layers? Do some feel more 'real' than others?

68051625-11785371-Rachel_Willis_played_Connie_short_for_Connect_in_the_AOL_adverti-a-52_1677330610099.jpg


One point of interest will be how this varies depending on where people live and what they do. I can see Stan feeling it's increasingly real due to the kind of projects and people he's involved with and I think Shaka's talked about it being very noticeable how much some of the people he hangs out with get their opinions from certain podcasts and Twitter accounts.

The Guardian reporting on 'looksmaxxing' was a real eyeopener, the fact what started as another 4chan thing's allegedly made its way both offline and into the mainstream:

 

Mr. Tea

Let's Talk About Ceps
There has been much hand-wringing in the media over “bone smashing”, for example, an extreme technique that involves taking a hammer to your face to promote more “manly” regrowth when the bones repair.

🤣
 

mixed_biscuits

_________________________
The Guardian reporting on 'looksmaxxing' was a real eyeopener, the fact what started as another 4chan thing's allegedly made its way both offline and into the mainstream:

This is of a piece with internet avatar choosing, larping, transing, gender-bending as they all disregard the significance of the form given by nature; they want to eliminate facticity from biology.
 

shakahislop

Well-known member
What's your sense of it at the moment? Does it feel like a concrete intrusion into your life or does it feel disconnected from your day to day? How much online influence do you sense in your immediate environment, in people's behaviours? Is this outweighed by the proliferation of fakes; fake products, fake stories, fake users?

I'm currently in the unreal camp. I use it a lot and talk to what I believe are real people on it, but the overall sensation is one of unreality. I don't feel much sense of a world behind the screen. There's a clear demarcation between what's on and offline and certain things appearing offline, someone using an online term, say, still feels like a character popping out of a film the way hearing someone say "lol" in a conversation in the 2000s did. It shouldn't be there.

I'm sure some will argue it's both, or neither, or too varied and sprawling to force such a distinction, but I think most of us will have a gut feeling one way or the other. Do you still feel you can dismiss things as "just idiots on Twitter", for example, or do you feel these things now exert too much influence to be completely waved away? Do you feel there's a distinction to be made between sections or layers of the online itself, say, a tool level, i.e. a level for shopping, research, banking and so on, a social level, i.e. a level for dating and social media, and a level for entertainment, i.e. journalism, media coverage, 'content'? If so, how separate do you see these layers? Do some feel more 'real' than others?

68051625-11785371-Rachel_Willis_played_Connie_short_for_Connect_in_the_AOL_adverti-a-52_1677330610099.jpg


One point of interest will be how this varies depending on where people live and what they do. I can see Stan feeling it's increasingly real due to the kind of projects and people he's involved with and I think Shaka's talked about it being very noticeable how much some of the people he hangs out with get their opinions from certain podcasts and Twitter accounts.

The Guardian reporting on 'looksmaxxing' was a real eyeopener, the fact what started as another 4chan thing's allegedly made its way both offline and into the mainstream:


firmly in the camp of the online being increasingly real. way more common in my life to hear someone repeat something they've got off the internet than to hear something they've come up with themselves. its not just what people say, people are doing things that are clearly online-motivated practices as well. it's absolutely everywhere. i don't think there is a separation any more. we've got to admit that people are part internet-machine now. cyborgs. ideas are catchy anyway and everyone is on the internet all the time looking for them
 

luka

Well-known member
quite a good thread this i think. biscuits is kbeing an embaressing werido tho which gets to me and makes me reluctant to log on cos its
dweeb-o-verse
 

wild greens

Well-known member
I may have said on here before but i think one of the main things that comes of prolonged exposure to online niches is that a forum like this tends to develop it's own linguistic quirks and rhythms, in-jokes perpetuate and eventually to attempt to read it as a newcomer, they're almost impenetrable. You used to see it on e.g rwd/dubstepforum/vip2, it's definitely the case here - I try and read some threads and they make zero sense except to the people who were in them in that moment. Sometimes even then i have no clue what's going on tbh

I used to feel a lot more "online" than i do now, and think the above has ended up happening on a much grander scale. Its a difficult thing to quantify but i think when you meet people who are exclusively WFH or majority hybrid, there are ways and behaviours creeping, or maybe different kinds of frustrations that are more prevelant in the weird online world
 

mixed_biscuits

_________________________
quite a good thread this i think. biscuits is kbeing an embaressing werido tho which gets to me and makes me reluctant to log on cos its
dweeb-o-verse
You started it with your dematerialisation talk: with dematerialisation comes decorporealisation and with that comes alienation from one's physical body; people feel more like the disembodied brain they are online and expect their body to be the avatar or symbolic persona which they choose with complete freedom on the internet.
 

mixed_biscuits

_________________________
When you log on and you see me what you're seeing is your own reflection in the mirror. I am your scion, your creation.
 

Mr. Tea

Let's Talk About Ceps
I may have said on here before but i think one of the main things that comes of prolonged exposure to online niches is that a forum like this tends to develop it's own linguistic quirks and rhythms, in-jokes perpetuate and eventually to attempt to read it as a newcomer, they're almost impenetrable. You used to see it on e.g rwd/dubstepforum/vip2, it's definitely the case here - I try and read some threads and they make zero sense except to the people who were in them in that moment.
Someone who used to post here once remarked that the old-time regulars were like members of an old married couple who'd routinely finish each other sentences, and even that was over a decade ago.
 

mixed_biscuits

_________________________
The problem with extensive cosmetic work in the aid of supposed looksmaxxing is that one has no idea what the person actually looks like. A woman may be instinctively attracted to a man with a strong jawline because natural selection has highlighted its association to other goods that come from the higher androgen input that formed the pronounced jaw, but then finds herself hitched to a poetry-obsessed androgyne - this is false advertising in the extreme.
 

version

Well-known member
firmly in the camp of the online being increasingly real. way more common in my life to hear someone repeat something they've got off the internet than to hear something they've come up with themselves. its not just what people say, people are doing things that are clearly online-motivated practices as well. it's absolutely everywhere. i don't think there is a separation any more. we've got to admit that people are part internet-machine now. cyborgs. ideas are catchy anyway and everyone is on the internet all the time looking for them

I saw one of my uncles recently and he was telling me one of my cousins, his daughter, who's around my age, has become one of those people who self-diagnoses based on clips they've seen on TikTok. Apparently she's diagnosed herself with something and now she's been telling him he has ADHD and he's just bemused by the whole thing.

Another of my cousins, her brother, was complaining about it last time I saw him too, that she's constantly trying to slot everything around her into these models she picks up from TikTok.
 

shakahislop

Well-known member
The problem with extensive cosmetic work in the aid of supposed looksmaxxing is that one has no idea what the person actually looks like. A woman may be instinctively attracted to a man with a strong jawline because natural selection has highlighted its association to other goods that come from the higher androgen input that formed the pronounced jaw, but then finds herself hitched to a poetry-obsessed androgyne - this is false advertising in the extreme.
not particularly trying to get at you biscuits, but assuming you also talk about this kind of thing in real life, this is a good example of the online becoming increasingly real. internet transmitted opinions. no way you or anyone would come to this set of opinions and vocabulary without the scenius of the internet
 
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