Chris Mendiola loves his dog Bear so much, he decided to get the same tattoo the dog bore when Chris adopted him six years ago. When he shared his mark of devotion with the internet, he knew he'd get some heat, but he had no idea just how far the images would go.
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In recent years, Reddit has banned a bevy of far-right troll havens, including its board for the white supremacist "alt-right" and others used for the harassment of women, minorities and other people. The bans were a reversal of Reddit's prior policy to not ban "questionable" content -- and drew predictable outrage, given that its policy of non-intervention had fostered an explosion of very active fringe communities, many of them far to the right or openly racist.
Nearly all the major technology services we've come to rely on have been negligent in enforcing their own user protection guidelines. Repeated calls to act on the Terms of Service these companies outlined for themselves without any meaningful response has arguably emboldened the worst elements taking root on them -- with years of simmering hatred brought to boil this weekend in Charlottesville.
By this point, you should know who killed Jason Blossom and kept all of Riverdale's sultry, suspicious citizens in a state of low-grade terror for the better part of the show's first season. Next season, though, it seems as if there might be an all-new, much creepier murderer with a connection to the Blossoms in town.
After rolling out a new social profile feature to a whopping three users back in March, Reddit finally opened up a limited beta version to a select (significantly larger) group of users last week. It took exactly five days for them to ruin it. Great going, everyone!
Three years ago, a website was created as a refuge for the communities deemed too hateful or toxic to exist on the lenient-to-a-fault social aggregator Reddit. That site was a knockoff called Voat which was identical in purpose and design, only its founding communities were groups like v/FatPeopleHate and the anti-black v/CoonTown.
Another day, another cryptocurrency clusterfuck. This week, the creator of the tipping bot "dogetipbot" -- a service that let Reddit users "tip" each other in Dogecoin -- announced that his company is broke, he's broke, and the bot is broke because he spent all the coins, after he himself ran out of money.
In terms of weird, creative, interesting things that happened on the 'internet' this year /r/place has to rank pretty high.
/r/place was a blank slate. Users could put a single pixel on that blank slate and creation demanded collaboration. What resulted reflected internet culture in all its gory glory.
Now we have an incredible website that explains what was left in the wasteland.
Earlier this month, Reddit pulled off one of its greatest accomplishments ever: getting users to spend 72 hours painstakingly making art together one pixel at a time. Now, one Redditor has created an atlas that documents the stories of each individual art project that contributed to this glorious mess.
Back in January, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he was "quite proud of the impact that we were able to have on civic discourse", doubling down on his stance that the rise of misinformation, spread of outright propaganda, and rapid erosion of trust in the fourth estate were anyone's problems but his. A whitepaper from the world's largest social media platform -- where an estimated 66 per cent of the site's American users get their news -- casually mentions that Facebook is also fertile soil for "subtle and insidious forms of misuse, including attempts to manipulate civic discourse and deceive people".
Wall-E is almost nine years old, so maybe it's time to re-evaluate the movie. Maybe it's not a morality tale about consumerism and the environment, with Wall-E as the example of purity. Because a new fan theory posits that the adorable robot is, in fact, Satan, and guys? It makes more sense than you'd expect.
Crunching the numbers on the millions upon millions of Reddit comments just to crack the code on upvotes would be difficult work. Thankfully, two software engineers, a Google big data project, and some careful analysis have already done the heavy lifting, revealing the simple trick to getting the top comment in most threads: get there first.
As far as accidental comedy goes, few things beat watching a PG-rated Disney film on a site with the ads for penis enlargement guides and "Tinder for MILFs". And while I didn't specifically seek out Pornhub or 2014's animated adventure Big Hero 6 today, both came into view thanks to the Reddit community r/FullMoviesOnPornhub.