4chan the anomaly of the internet


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The 4chan community is one of the most interesting group of people you will ever come across online. They all contribute to a community board under the name 'anonymous', no one has an identity, no social hierarchy.

The interesting thing about them is that they all work together for a greater good or bad.

The following is thread 'OMG A FALLING WEEVIL' is amazing. They all work together to tell a story and all acknowledge the different parts of the story. Please read the story before reading on. The thread follows the following structure.

1st Movement
Desperate to save the weevil

Post
The Anonymous shows a photo of it dead

2nd movement
Anonymous all start mourning the loss

Post
Another Anonymous states that the Weevil is god

3rd Movement
Weevil is god.

This type of co-ordination with no social hierarchy is unheard of online. Anyone know of any other examples like this?

4chan also recently hacked The Times Online Poll another good read.

17 comments:

Joel Pearson said...

4Chan was also responsible for making Basement Dad the most popular twitter user in australia...

Refer to THIS ARTICLE

Age said...

You should def check out one of the largest community boards on the internet... the IGN Gaming Boards... in particular the social demographics and laws which govern their free usage "Teh Vestibule" board.

Teh Vestibule is a place where meme's have been born and crossed over, where the board itself has it's own history, off site takeovers, riots, legendary threads, respected members, disgraced members, rankings, payed insiders with perks VS noobs and freeloaders, where 2007 members suck, and the politics of mods threatening to have your account banned and your reputation destroyed. It's a board where you are rewarded for contribution which also leads to members doing the craziest shit to earn the respect of members - sometimes at amazing costs.

It's a place where thousands of people come to share and mock and open up to (mostly) complete strangers and gaming geeks. Hilarity ensues.

http://boards.ign.com/board.asp?brd=5296

http://www.indopedia.org/IGN.html

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=IGN%20Vestibule

Stan Lee said...

Given that I don't even know what a quadrant is, I'm reluctant to make the following comment:

Why do you consider 4chan an anomaly?

Obviously 4chan is way outside of my internet repertoire, but surely the behaviour is similar to other boards, forums etc?

I think it's great that they all post as anonymous. In fact I can never understand the obsession some people have with anon posts. Surely it's no different to the general public slagging things off?

But to come back to my original question, why do you consider them an anomaly?

Julian Cole said...

Hey Age and Joel, thanks for those links. I am going to definitely have to check out IGN, poor basement dad he has been loosing followers by the bucket load.

Stan, I think that 4chan is an anomaly of the internet because everyone posts in anonymous. Normally in other online communities, we will have some people posting anon but the people who run and look after the community have identities. Something that we can identify them by when they post (username).

With 4chan this is not the case. This is unusual because one of the first rules of a social hierarchy is that we must be able to identify the leaders (even by just a username). With 4chan there is no leaders, everyone is leading the show and they listen to each other for clues on what to do. I do not know many communities that act 100% in anon!

Stan Lee said...

Thanx for filling me in Jules.
Hope the trip's going well.

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