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Archive for the 'Countdown' Category

Hah! So! Wouldn’t you know the first time in a long time I decide to write a series, website issues lock me out of my account so “tune in tomorrow” sits there for days. No, I didn’t forget. Here’s reason two that intelligent debate is impossible on the internet…

The Internet Alphabet

What’s the internet alphabet? A, Z. The end. Either a person believes A, or they believe Z. There’s no in between. If a person says they’re opposed to A, that must mean they love Z (even if they’re more M or K).

A long time ago I wrote an article about a song by a “family friendly” artist. Immediately I was accused of hating non-mainstream music, and loving only hardcore rap and angry depressing music full of swear-words and sex. As it turns out, I don’t hate non-mainstream music, and I prefer upbeat alternative and/or classic rock. But not on the internet. One song. A or Z.

But I see a future where one day the whole alphabet will exist on the ‘net. H’s, I’s, J’s, P’s, Q’s, all discussing in harmony.

But then I guess it’s not news, after all, the internet’s not terribly kind to language in general…

The internet’s becoming like it’s own little society, but, as some have noted, it’s a society without many limits or norms. It connects people across the globe with boundless information and millions of other people. And many times, people want to share their knowledge and learn and grow with other people, through the internet.

This will never happen, or should I say, it won’t happen while these five problems exist:

5. Hitler

Hitler was just one of those historical figures, you know? He made his way to power, he built up a society, and he performed some of the most horrible acts of any generation. Millions of people dead, lives ruined, it was a dark time in history.

Unfortunately, it was also long enough ago that most people on the internet today, don’t remember it. And so they have no context for Hitler. They just see Hitler as “bad.”

So, when you get on a forum somewhere and start defending your favorite famous person, someone who dislikes them strongly will, very likely, compare them to Hitler. Why is this bad? Because what can you say to that? Obviously if they think making an offensive website is the same as fueling a gigantic murder machine, where can the debate go? Would you defend Hitler?

The worst part: It’s seeping into real life. The other day I had a guy in class compare William Dampier to Hitler because he strongly disagreed with my idea that he was a hero to adventure novelists.

Debate can’t happen in a situation like that. And that situation is pretty much the internet.


Tune in Tomorrow for #4…