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Politics & World

Moderated by: Weird Occurance Lord Denida

Current Events and World Affairs, Government Information and News Headlines... but please leverage the Hot Takes forum for debates!

The internet is much more politicized than it used to be, and I don't care for it.

Posted 1 Month ago by Ridley

That's not to say politics were absent from the internet. Mocking George W. Bush was a fad among other things. But politics as a whole weren't anything people really talked about at length on the greater internet. Nobody really engaged in political discussion; it wasn't consider fun nor cool.

Nowadays you can't use any major website like Facebook or Twitter without some other user (or the site admin itself) shoving their political views down your throat. Search engines like Google or Yahoo are blatantly biased and push stories or other websites that they "align" with ideologically. Blogging sites try to herd everyone into political discussion, because users are more likely to engage (read: sit on the computer for 8 hours every day) if they are being antagonized based on their views, beliefs or identity. Even irreverent websites like 4chan are dominated by politically-charged shitposting. It's not a left-or-right issue, either, everyone is veering down the same road.

Now I find yet another resurrection of the old Gametalk site and what's the first thing I see? Most (basically all) of the most recent threads have to do with current issues or politics. Parts of the site that used to be thriving and lively, like RPG Chat, get a few posts per year. I don't even see the old Random board anywhere, and that place used to be huge! What the hell happened?

There are 10 Replies


First of all, welcome to the GTFA version of GT.

Nowadays you can't use any major website like Facebook or Twitter without some other user (or the site admin itself) shoving their political views down your throat. Search engines like Google or Yahoo are blatantly biased and push stories or other websites that they "align" with ideologically. Blogging sites try to herd everyone into political discussion, because users are more likely to engage (read: sit on the computer for 8 hours every day) if they are being antagonized based on their views, beliefs or identity. Even irreverent websites like 4chan are dominated by politically-charged shitposting. It's not a left-or-right issue, either, everyone is veering down the same road.


Unfortunately how the world is now...

Now I find yet another resurrection of the old Gametalk site and what's the first thing I see? Most (basically all) of the most recent threads have to do with current issues or politics. Parts of the site that used to be thriving and lively, like RPG Chat, get a few posts per year. I don't even see the old Random board anywhere, and that place used to be huge! What the hell happened?


As for this version of Gametalk, it probably has to do partly with everyone growing up and not as many wanting to give the site a chance to use it yet. You are more than welcome to begin.

¤LðŗРУŋįd@¤

1 Month ago
Lord Denida

As Denida said, welcome to GT For All. We appreciate you stopping by, Ridley. I do not believe we've met, but I (and we) are happy to have you here.

Nowadays you can't use any major website like Facebook or Twitter without some other user (or the site admin itself) shoving their political views down your throat. Search engines like Google or Yahoo are blatantly biased and push stories or other websites that they "align" with ideologically. Blogging sites try to herd everyone into political discussion, because users are more likely to engage (read: sit on the computer for 8 hours every day) if they are being antagonized based on their views, beliefs or identity. Even irreverent websites like 4chan are dominated by politically-charged shitposting. It's not a left-or-right issue, either, everyone is veering down the same road.


I don't particularly like this about the internet, either. I recently (a few months back) purged my Facebook friends list to get it down to people who only share memes and video game related content. It's the only way I can get by, as I'm not terribly political myself. It can get exhausting.


Now I find yet another resurrection of the old Gametalk site and what's the first thing I see? Most (basically all) of the most recent threads have to do with current issues or politics. Parts of the site that used to be thriving and lively, like RPG Chat, get a few posts per year. I don't even see the old Random board anywhere, and that place used to be huge! What the hell happened?


I'd personally love to see more RPG Chat and would love to revive Pointless. General kind of took Pointless over in the last two GT iterations, but it's largely inactive, now. I wish RPG Chat and General got some more love, as Pointless and RPG Chat were cornerstones of orig GT, and were the most active forums back in the day.

Every now and then we get a great worldbuilding post here, and there's interest in expanding in this area. Maybe that's the more adult-version of RPG chat as far as the current user base is concerned? I hope it may kickstart some old facets of GT's legacy if it takes off.

This site's struggling; we know that. We have ideas (see the site activity thread a few threads down), but this version of the site is new (as of less than a month ago) and could use some love from the community. Would love to see you contribute some and reacquaint yourself with those who are still around.

Also, please observe the Discord in the Social Media section of the site. It gets bumps in activity when people make the effort to start a conversation.

I'm happy to chat about potential improvements you'd like to see - my discord is also in the Social Media section - and there's the requests forum and Site Activity thread. I'd also encourage you to be the change you wish to see here. Every thread helps to keep this place active and boost activity in different forums. As for now, I appreciate you taking the time to post and look around a bit.

¤¤♅êîrÐ Øccu®@n瀤¤

1 Month ago
Weird Occurance

The internet is much more politicized than it used to be, and I don't care for it.


Before I read anything else in this post whatsoever:

I AGREE

1 Month ago
Xhin
Sky's the limit

I agree with significant parts of this, even if I am not a Both Sides Andy.

If I had my way, I would be living as a heathen might: working a craft that I love, tending a family that I've chosen, reveling in the paradise of the real.

That is largely how I try to approach my life currently, though my love of culture and philosophy inexorably involves one or more of the heavily-pushed talking points of the modern American political landscape.

Some amount of critique and dialogue is necessary in the context of navigating this world, in order to understand and communicate the issues and to make informed decisions, but it is clear that you're not talking about simply holding a conversation about politics. You are talking about the controlled and hyperfocused narratives surrounding some issues. I do also find this as exhausting as I imagine the average rational person would.

Ultimately, we need to cut down on doomscrolling and 24-hour news cycle narrative gorging. Unfortunately, this runs directly counter to the interests of both the people who garner money and influence from the media that they own and the people who are lifted to positions of power by the masses driven by dichotomous ideology. We are not going to vote this problem away, either; it seems to me that the solution to the issues of what this does to a person and what this does to a society are the same, on different levels: to live, which does not mean to act without thinking, but to proportion action and thought to each thing as they are shown to reasonably bear them, and in this way to fundamentally change the world such that those who would take a hammer to the fault in us find themselves unbelievably, irrevocably, finally disarmed.

1 Month ago
galbraith

The internet is much more politicized than it used to be, and I don't care for it.

I would suggest that part of it is simply growing up, as Denida said. Most of us aren't engaging in petty console-wars nonsense anymore, but politics still gets our blood pumping because those issues are actually important to us as adults.

The other part, especially when it comes to sites like Youtube / Facebook / Twitter, is that everyone has figured out that outrage drives activity. So leaving controversial content up, or letting the algorithm drive someone down an outrage rabbit hole, is going to generate more engagement (and money, typically in the form of advertising) than feel-good content.

Unfortunately, I don't really see a viable way out of the current situation. Unrestrained capitalism (oops, now I did a politics) has worked its magic on the internet, and this is the end result: maximum outrage for maximum profit.

1 Month ago
Count Dooku

Unrestrained capitalism (oops, now I did a politics)


For shame. I would never make such a gaffe. Can't you appreciate how apolitical my post was? You can tell it's apolitical because I didn't name a particular political group or a specific hot-button talking point.

/s

1 Month ago
galbraith

I used to be very big in the politics side of things -- liked arguing endlessly about various issues with other people who also liked arguing about various issues. The problem since about 2016 and especially post-2020 is that politics is no longer theoretical and the ideological divide has gotten absolutely absurd. Also as the OP said, everything is politicized now.

I find it really hard to have an honest debate with absolutely anyone these days -- either we agree on policy in which case they've drunk the kool-aid and even slight deviations from our shared narrative is unnacceptable "brainwashing", or we don't agree on policy so therefore I am every strawman ever conceived on whatever side of the aisle they think I'm on. I'll occasionally find someone who's sane, but being sane they've decided to forego politics altogether. Over time, I've turned into that myself.

I don't think there's a solution during a time period where there are actual bad things happening, as well as attempts to crack down on people who have a wide variety of opinions on what's happening. Historically, these kinds of environments cause radical ideologies to gain political power and/or foment civil war.

Best to just



1 Month ago
Xhin
Sky's the limit

In my opinion, it's not best to just watch the world burn, because the world contains a lot of people that I am at least theoretically compassionate for, and some that I am most definitely compassionate for (including me).

I would say that it's best to just think things through, develop a firmly grounded rational method of morality and make yourself ready to act in defense of the meagerly flourishing blossoms of humanity that exist in this desert of the real.

But, then again, I have long been moved by a sense of the just. I would prefer to be that kind of person than the alternative. Some say that this makes me an authoritarian, but I fail to see how that is a useful label for a person who chooses to preserve life when an immoderate treatment of liberty would mean death.

1 Month ago
galbraith

Even irreverent websites like 4chan are dominated by politically-charged shitposting.


Interestingly enough, even 4chan has their pockets of people about their business. A lot of the pornography boards are focused on the subject at hand, with the major exception being /gif/, as that's a major bastion of /pol/ack propaganda for multiple exceedingly esoteric reasons that I won't expound upon here.

4chan's porn boards, especially /d/, /aco/, /cm/, etc. all shifted noticeably progressive (moreso than they already were) after the NSFW purge that Tumblr enacted. The queer community on 4chan is in literally no danger of dying out, and it might actually be healthier than ever, despite the politically-charged shitposting that is arrayed against them. The irreverent humor that I used to depend on /b/ to provide without a significant amount of literal direct fascist propaganda mixed in is still there, though I appreciate the fact that most people are not particularly interested in the subjects that they deal with. While there are some unfortunate dark spots in the community,

>shadman

It is generally a wholesome and fulfilling experience - for me, at least. In this sense, I wouldn't say that 4chan is "dominated" by politically-charged shitposting, though there is an obvious problem with how some of the users act in their safe spaces and where they try to force the expansion of their safe spaces into.

1 Month ago
galbraith

Is everything "political now" or are just more people now able to understand how political most things innately are?


I used to be very big in the politics side of things -- liked arguing endlessly about various issues with other people who also liked arguing about various issues.


See, I think it's much easier to take that approach either before you're living on your own in the real world, or exist outside of the set of privileges that let "politics" be just that: a verbal sparring match akin to a game. For a lot of us, especially as we get older like Dooku noted, it becomes harder to take pleasure in arguing about "politics" when the things we argue about have real world impact on people. Like at a certain point it's not fun to argue about health care being a human right because it's like, we're soooo exhausted and people are routinely losing everything they own just to barely afford life-saving surgery and medical treatment. It's not "fun" or "engaging" to have to keep arguing for these things that have such a profound impact on millions of people's daily lives. Especially if you're a group that's commonly discriminated against, it's not really "interesting" to have to keep arguing that your existence on a basic level is valid. It's not particularly "enthralling" to have to argue that your lived experience differs from what people on the internet who are removed from that situation think in regards to particular policies.

I think it's partly that people have grown up on the internet, so things that maybe didn't affect us or matter to use when we were 18 or 21 now does. Like I didn't care anything about affordability of housing when I was 20 years old and it was just expected that people that age have room mates. But now I'm in my mid-30s and the housing crisis is so bonkers and significant. Or like, when I was 17, why would I have ever thought anything about health care? I was already fortunate enough to have relatively good health. Plus I was on my parents' health care plan. The *only* reason I never went a gap without health insurance in my adulthood was Romney/Obamacare. And now, health care is a big deal because A) I'm older and dealing with many more health issues and B) health care is one of the absolute main reasons I don't feel I have much choice but to stay at my current job.


I don't think there's a solution during a time period where there are actual bad things happening,


And like, this is sort of what I mean. When was there ever a time period where there *weren't* "actual bad things happening"?

To be sure, there are many issues that have really reached a boiling point. The rise and prominence of anti-democratic sentiments across the country; climate change; a global pandemic; some of the worst income and wealth inequality this country has ever seen; the opioid crisis; the housing crisis; towns literally having their water supply poisoned without consequence; a prison industrial complex that incentivizes criminalizing anything it can and the uneven distribution of punishment and policing (with a trend of police officers being emboldened and protected to abuse their power); massive corruption in the government and the growing influence of money in the political process at all levels. All these are just a small set of examples. But literally none of these emerged overnight. None of these originated even within our own lifetime. (Maaaaybe the opioid crisis, depending on how old some of us are.)

So yeah, you can argue that it hasn't always been *this* bad, *this* broadly in our lifetimes. But I think that's part of what makes the argument that this is a new thing so frustrating. Maybe if so many people weren't so dismissive of all the bad things that have been happening for generations, it might not have gotten to this kind of tipping point where it's impossible to look away.

Bad things are always happening. They've always been happening. It's just been a lot easier for those of us lucky enough to not experience directly or even indirectly many of those things to look away or ignore it in the past. You can easily just ignore one or two homeless people in the street when you walk down town. Much harder to do when you start seeing dozens of homeless people in the street. Y'know?


The other part, especially when it comes to sites like Youtube / Facebook / Twitter, is that everyone has figured out that outrage drives activity.


Well it's not so much that they figured out it's that outrage drives activity. That's been known for a long, long time. They just figured out the algorithms so that they can *retain* your outrage and *spread it* so they can sell more ads, collect more data, and then sell that too.

1 Month ago
Jet Presto

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