Gettin’ Awkward in here…
Three years ago me and my then current flatmates had a crack at making a website. Full of piss and vinegar as all students are, we wanted to make a killer site for PC gamers, it’s safe to say we reached well beyond our grasp. Our site was to be a lofty library of gaming news and reviews, containing none of the misguided pomp and commercialisation that the bigger sites had. And while we were caught up in figuring out who would write content for our shiny new site, we should have been asking who will read the damn thing…
It was web publishing 101 for all involved, and provided Adam and I with vital real-world experience with administering a web server, and hosting a site.
Anyhow long story short after allot of coding and writing (as well as dodging a lawsuit), we had a random collection of amateur articles, and a site that was going nowhere fast. So why the hell am I talking about our old WordPress experiment?
Because were doing it all over again!
Yes this is still the early stages, and yes it might not even get off the ground this time, but chances are the little gaming site that couldn’t is probably coming back.
Over the past 27 years social media has evolved and spread, from simple test exchange systems, to the sprawling weave of services we have today. However at its core, the main engine room of social media is still web based services.
Originally in the mid 80’s there were BBS (Bulletin Board System), a simplified predecessor to the modern web forum the BBS required the user to ‘dial in’ to a host pc every time the board was posted on or refreshed. Later in the 90’s came web forums, a re-implementation of the BBS for the web. During this period personal websites became more popular as free hosting services, such as Geocities began to appear. It wasnt until the early 2000’s that the ‘modern’ social network site became popular, originating with services such as Myspace, then Bebo, and finally Facebook.
History lesson over, it’s clear that the social web service is a rapidly evolving field, with popular services rising and falling within a decade. I however find the changes in the last decade to be the most interesting. Conceptually the big three (Myspace, Bebo, Facebook) differ little from one another, so why the change? Everything that Facebook has achieved was well within the scope of Bebo, and Myspace.
I believe that audiences, or more specifically the targeting of audiences played a massive part in the rapid transitions. Facebook was fairly neutral in which audience it pandered to, ultimately appearing as a more mature service than childlike Bebo, or schizophrenic Myspace.
Ultimately I believe it’s through this avenue that web based social media services will still continue to evolve. As we discover new ways to connect our devices, we discover new audiences. And as social media services evolve, they will discover new ways to engage the vast spectrum of users, and encourage them to engage with others.
STFU IP4N PWN JOO!!1!
Jargon is an important part of human communication. It allows specific communities a simple way to discuss niche concepts. Ever since the Internet exploded back in the early 90’s, more communities began to swell and started creating their own lingo, one of the biggest today being the gaming community.
If you were to ask a random person on the street to describe a modern gamer, they would probably tell you of a fat greasy man in his mid 20’s with the mind and social etiquette of a child. This is a classic case of the vocal minority shaping how the majority is perceived. Compounding this the fact is that same minority always seem to be speaking in some bizarre code that to the average person sounds like bullshit.
That aside gaming jargon is the combination of a need to communicate quickly without moving ones fingers too far from the controls, as well as pandering to the sociopathic attitude harbored by 70% of gamers today.
As with most jargon, gaming lingo was originally tailored to describe specific scenarios unique to videogames, but it also shares some terms with other associated shorthands, such as the term frag.
Gaming lingo is also shaped in a more ‘physical’ way, common terms such as ‘pwn’ (own), and ‘teh’ (the) are common typos from nervously slamming the keyboard between reloads. Also acronyms have worked their way into every crack of gaming jargon, but these are usually specific to individual game titles rather than the global community.
Gaming jargon is also quite insulting. ‘Hardcore Gamers’ being the wingey little shits that they are, have created an astounding number of insults for nearly every possible scenario!
It’s not all bad though, as gaming has reached more mature audiences over they years game-speak has started to transition away from garbled insults into a more practical and technical language.
But seriously they’ve gotta cut down on the acronyms…
FFS - A Brief Expliantion Of ‘Facepalm’
Ahhh memes, what would our beloved world wide web be like today if you hadn’t graced us with your frivolous presence? Probably cleaner, quieter, and allot less annoying, because not only would we be losing the easiest method of measuring human detritus levels, but also eliminating a good 90% of the balmy Internet shorthand said detritus uses instead of words.
However not all memes are like alien languages, most of the more common ones are usually reaction images, and the king of reaction images is undoubtedly the facepalm.
The humble facepalm is perhaps the most powerful physical indication of frustration and disappointment, it has transcended languages, cultures, and even species. The meme originated sometime in 2007, on niche forums and imageboards, but given the sheer stupidity of Internet denizens the meme spread like wildfire. The original and most popular Image used is the man to the right Patric Stewart, from Star Trek, but as the meme spread more variations appeared.
Most memes are spur of the moment affairs never lasting more than a year, but why has the faceplam endeared for so long? Answer: the web is stupid, and as the barrier to entry lowers it’ll only get worse, and that means we’ll be seeing allot more of these guys!
So if at the end of a hard day, when you find yourself being lambasted by some internet bigot, or exposed to steadily unfunny morons, remember relief is only a jpeg away!