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An Outsiders look at Commenting, Community and the Deadspin Situation Part 1

July 14, 2009

Hi everybody. I originally had an idea for a post on my take on the Deadspin situation. It soon evolved into something much more. I broke it up and serialized it, because I’m not Simmons and I can’t just plug in 80’s references to keep the masses entertained over a long piece. Stay tuned all week for updates to the story.

An Outsider’s look at Commenting, Community and the Deadspin Situation: Part 1

Hello Deadspinites, Blogrifca, and fellow Commentariat,

Some of you know me, or have gotten to know me pretty recently. If we don’t know each other, perhaps we soon shall. I call the Wintry city of Edmonton, Canada home, and am a quasi-intellectual sports fanatic. I’m also an outsider from the comenting/website/blogger community, just now finding my way in.

Several years ago the Internet was a vast oasis of porn and mostly obscure reference/research information. Sure NHL.com and ESPN.com existed, but they were to the current internet what Chris Wallace and his like are to competent sports management. They were slow, inefficient and got no respect (not that they deserved any). If you wanted to have a discussion with someone you’d call them up from a landline telephone or perhaps even write them a letter.

So obviously the Internet community was archaic and limited to a few factions. The Pedobears, being the forward thinking insightful group that they are, were there with bells on. It seems that Mystery Vans with the promises of free candy weren’t quite working like they once did. The response was to move on to nearly instant (fucking dialup) distant relationships with the possibility of something more. A subset of this group was the stupid teenagers in chatrooms with the incessant A/S/L, what are you wearing type questions (I call this a subset, because many of the so called teenagers were in fact sneaky Pedobears trying to score underage ass).

The second community was the IRC/Warez/Wunderkid group who created for us file sharing and the the forefathers fo the internet viruses that exist today. Growing up, my Grandfather was an Engineering professor as a fairly prestigious University. This meant that I had early access to a computer and thus was much more competent then most people. In fact I remember downloading an .mp3 sometime in 1998 (White Zombie– More Human than Human) it took like 98 minutes to download; if the world ever returns to dialup, I’m killing myself. I also dabbled in the IRC community, but was definitely not an expert nor overly attached to it (A/S/L?). After all, there were real live girls in school and beers to drink. Not that I got to touch any of those girls either, but they were there and the beer was in fact real.

The point of all this semi-coherent rambling is that virtual communities were nothing like they are today. If you were to tell someone that you’re a commemtor on Deadspin nowadays you’ll either get a blank stare with a, “What’s Deadspin?”, anger(due to the situation I’ll go over later, or get a , “Yeah me too. What’s your username?”. Back then, well you wouldn’t really tell people about things like that because you’d be considered a freakish weirdo. Good luck with the high school ass if your a freakish weirdo (that is unless of course, you were the Pedobear). Unlike today, it was not a world of intrigue and sex like the movie Hackers portrayed. In the early (mid-late 90’s) you either didn’t do it, or didn’t tell people about it because of the negative stigma that was attached. This unfortunate attitude carried forth for many years and is now dissipating, albeit at a slow pace. Maybe in 10 years, it’ll be the societal norm to comment or perhaps have open discourse on any and all internet topics.

I came about Deadspin in what I can only assume is a completely different way than most people… Continued tomorrow.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 21, 2009 3:11 am

    Hi there, my home page is http://www.google.com

    • October 21, 2009 2:07 pm

      Mine too! We’re twinsieeessssssSss!!!! How fun! Can we braid each other’s hair??? I love that!

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