Silly Internet Traditions: A Concise History
- 07 July, 2008 09:11
While the rise of the Internet undoubtedly expanded our ability to communicate with one another, it also created a new dilemma: how to fully convey emotions and intentions succinctly without the use of vocal inflections or body language. The solution? Create small faces to express happiness (J), sarcasm ( ;-) ), displeasure ( L ), shock ( :-O ) or a wide array of other emotions. While this method of communicating intent may seem crude, it has certainly been effective: after all, can you imagine all the awkward moments and ruined friendships that we'd all experience if we were no longer allowed to use the Winky Face after making a particularly snide remark?
"All your base are belong to us."
We have been laughing at poorly-translated Japanese texts since at least the 1980s, when Panasonic and Sony were issuing near-unreadable instruction manuals for programming VCRs. But it wasn't until thousands of gamers on the web started obsessing over an obscure 1989 space-shooter game called Zero Wing that hilariously inept Japanese translations became ingrained in Internet culture. Essentially, Zero Wing's introduction features a noble band of space fighters are suddenly attacked by a vicious alien warlord named CATS. After the ship's mechanic informs the crew that "someone set us up the bomb" (or more accurately, "Someone has set up explosives on our ship), CATS appears on the ship's transmission screen tells our heroes that "all your base are belong to us" (or: "We have taken over all your bases."). The phrase became so ubiquitous that even Time Magazine penned an article explaining the phenomenon to the normals.
Leet (or: "1337")
"Leet" is essentially a form of Internet slang that has been developed haphazardly over the years by both the hacking and online gaming communities. Short for "elite," Leet has slowly migrated over the past 13 years from small hacker groups to mainstream Internet language (see also: LOLCats). While the language's intentional misspellings and grammatical idiosyncrasies are too numerous to list in this space, here are some general rules to remember when trying decipher Leet messages: first, most vowels (a, e, i, and o) are changed into corresponding numbers (4, 3, 1, 0). Second, the suffix "-xor" is often used to replace the suffix "-er" - thus, the word "hacker" is frequently translated into "haxxor" or "h4xx0r." And finally, when someone says that they've "pwn3d" you, they're telling you literally that they've "owned" you in some type of competitive battle and have emerged victorious. So to put it all together: "Ha, ha, the hacker has defeated you, newcomer!" can be translated roughly to "T3h h4axx0r pwn3d j00 n00b LOL!!!!111!!1!"
"I HAVE HAD IT WITH THESE @#$%^$ SNAKES!!!"
Although the Blair Witch Project was the first major movie to use the viral nature of the Internet to generate buzz, no movie has developed such a strong symbiotic relationship with the web than "Snakes on a Plane," the notorious 2006 Samuel L. Jackson thriller that delivered, as advertized, a whole lot of #$%^$@ snakes attacking people on a @#$%$ plane. The plot goes as follows: a group of mobsters plant poisonous snakes on passenger jet in order to take out a key witness set to testify against them. Like many Internet phenomena, the film's main selling power was its lovable and irresistible cheesiness, and it soon spawned countless blogs, songs and fan trailers in the months before its release. In order to appease fans, New Line Cinema even authorized filming additional scenes for the film that added nudity and copious amounts of profanity to push the film from PG-13 into R-rated territory.
- Thanks to 9/11, she's outraged by decolonization
- I Am Aware of All Internet Traditions
- Kinetix Character Studio Dancing Baby
- Dancing Baby
- Hamster Dance
- Deirdre LaCarte
- Loituma Girl
- Macaroni Macarena
- Matt Harding
- Matt Harding dancing
- Goodwin's Law
- Zero Wing
- Time article
- Blair Witch Project
- Blair Witch buzz
- snake blogs
- snake songs
- snake fan trailer
- Snakes film scenes
- Chuck Norris
- "Walker, Texas Ranger"
- Norris has said
- Rick Astley video
- YouTube April fools day
- Andrew Meyer's desperate plea
- Chris Crocker's defense
- "Star Wars kid"
- I Can Has Cheezburger?
- "DO NOT WANT"
- "Im in ur base killing ur d00dz"
- Urban Dictionary
- balloon-juice blog
Review: Sony Xperia SP
Coming to a shopping centre near you: 3D body scanners
ASIC debacle: Conroy open to transparency over website blocks
Verizon, Jennifer Lopez partner on Latino-focused wireless stores
WikiLeaks Party closer to registering