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Utterly useless

By MotorMachineMercenary in MLP
Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 05:06:34 AM EST
Tags: Internet (all tags)

I can't but be completely flabbergasted by the incredible amount of utterly useless crap available on the internet. It is almost impossible not to stumble upon sites for rating geeks, Lego porn, cloning Jesus, passed out goths and stuff that I can't even start to explain, like here and there. What is going on?

Is this an example of the dummification of the internet/society as a whole, or an empirical example of the old adage that 90% of everything is shit - or more likely 99%? Either some people have way too much time on their hands or the wackos/freaks/nutcases/innovators/true geniuses have finally found a forum in the internet where to air out their ideas. And which one is crazier, the person creating these sites or the one visiting them?

Maybe I shouldn't be worried; there might be a greater benefit from the propagation of memes, however useless they might seem. But I still tend to think that this is not necessarily and entirely a Good Thing™.

In the meantime, I'm almost ready to launch my own utterly useless website. "Do as they say, not as they do." ;)


Voxel dot net
o Managed Hosting
o VoxCAST Content Delivery
o Raw Infrastructure


How useless is the most useless crap on the 'net?
o Utterly 40%
o Completely 9%
o Somewhat 23%
o What? 26%

Votes: 86
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o Lego porn
o cloning Jesus
o passed out goths
o here
o there
o greater benefit
o memes
o Also by MotorMachineMercenary

Display: Sort:
Utterly useless | 46 comments (29 topical, 17 editorial, 0 hidden)
One man's stupidity... (2.60 / 10) (#2)
by daystar on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 05:43:11 PM EST

.. is another man's christianity.

Or something less offensive.

There is no God, and I am his prophet.
It is a "Good Thing" (4.50 / 8) (#4)
by sl4ck0ff on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 05:53:33 PM EST

That's one of the reasons I love the 'net, it's free! You can find so many things on the Internet it isn't even funny. It's uncensored, unsupervised art, genius, crap...Whatever you want to call it, please keep the Internet a Freenet for the most part. Don't take it away from me.
/me has returned to slacking
good (4.00 / 4) (#17)
by Wah on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 07:05:22 PM EST

Is the Internet purest form of human expression ever devised?

I think that label would apply now, although it sounds like some of those silly (as defined in 1996) people back in '93 who said the Internet was all sorts of amazing things. I think we are starting to see it become a reality. And the reality, well the reality is lego porn and facial aficianados. But at least we know what we look like.

And it's still growing as fast as the poster of this story can get his site up.

Here's some tripe that I'll link to instead of posting.
Fail to Obey?
[ Parent ]

Believe me, it hasn't changed (3.25 / 4) (#5)
by jasonab on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 05:54:58 PM EST

If you would have surveyed the web six or seven years ago (when Mosaic was in its prime), you would have seen the same thing. Believe me, it's much more useful now, even with all the crap.


America is a great country. One of the freest in the world. -- greenrd
I'm 1337 too! (3.66 / 3) (#15)
by MotorMachineMercenary on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 06:46:41 PM EST

I did survey the web six or seven years ago, and I agree with you about the usability of the web now compared to then.

I guess there's not much difference between the usability of dancing rodents and ASCII pr0n...

My bodyweight is muscle and cock MMM
Tenured K5 uberdouchebag Herr mirleid
Meatgazer Frau gr3y

[ Parent ]
one man's garbage.. (3.25 / 4) (#7)
by rebelcool on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 05:58:46 PM EST

is another man's feast.

COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site

Oh, so you're the guy's been rooting in my trash. (3.80 / 5) (#8)
by marlowe on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 06:04:23 PM EST

I thought it was raccoons.

-- The Americans are the Jews of the 21st century. Only we won't go as quietly to the gas chambers. --
[ Parent ]
heh (3.75 / 4) (#10)
by rebelcool on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 06:10:00 PM EST

you need to get some better coffee. These grinds are stank.

COG. Build your own community. Free, easy, powerful. Demo site
[ Parent ]

This is what happens (3.50 / 6) (#11)
by Wah on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 06:25:44 PM EST

when you give everyday people publishing equipment. Personally I find it rather entertaining, in a jerry springerish sort of way. I started collecting some of the wierd links on my page, under a section known as "Too Much Time on Their Hands." Considering that I have time enough to do this, well that's just the typical hypocrisy of making fun of others rearing it's ugly head again.

BTW, did anyone else get the lego pr0n to load? Those red exes are sexy, but I was hoping for little plastic people gettin' it on.
Fail to Obey?

What's up with these sites? (4.75 / 4) (#19)
by ContinuousPark on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 07:29:13 PM EST

That's the main reason I visit Memepool every other day, they have the strangest links, I'm starting think they find them by typing random words in Google; I've tried that myself and really weird stuff comes out.

Some of these sites are quite funny in a gross kind of way, and some could be signs of our civilization coming into pieces.

But every now and then I think there's something about these sites that "justifies" their existence; I won't go so far as to say there's something noble, but I can imagine, for instance, the dedication these people put to their sites: to start a collection of some weird stuff or to come up with something like the lego porn, and then very carefully take photographs of the scenes, maybe scan them, treat them in photoshop or whatever, make thumbnails, post them to the website, maybe even pay a few bucks for hosting!

And all of this for what, you might say? But sometimes, sometimes I just see it as people trying to express themselves, to find a way to get a laugh out of others or to shock people just for the sake of it, however misleading this way could be. I don't know; it probably is crap but it's someone's way to express themselves too. Now I will not question it's kind of depressing but what can you do? I say the way to keep your own sanity is to let them be.

but it is the Internet! (3.75 / 4) (#25)
by madams on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 08:36:47 PM EST

The fact that just about anyone can publish a website about whatever they want is one of the advantages of the Internet. No matter how obscure, tasteless, or wierd a web site is, there is someone out there who will enjoy it (I, for instance, couldn't help but laugh at Lego Porn).

The fact that the web is a push medium helps; that is, it's hard to come upon things unintentionally, and just as easy to escape from them.

And if the Internet wasn't all everyone sharing, then it wouldn't be any different from "old media".

Mark Adams
"But pay no attention to anonymous charges, for they are a bad precedent and are not worthy of our age." - Trajan's reply to Pliny the Younger, 112 A.D.

Memepool (2.33 / 3) (#26)
by Kaa on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 08:53:39 PM EST

Can I point out that there is a very cool site that specializes in exactly the links you are MLPing here -- www.memepool.com.

Highly recommended.

Kaa's Law: In any sufficiently large group of people most are idiots.

Kaa's Law :-) (3.00 / 2) (#28)
by BehTong on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 09:14:27 PM EST

Kaa's Law: In any sufficiently large group of people most are idiots.

Hey, welcome to K5 :-)

I first saw your sig on Slashdot, and it's been the most concise way of expressing the way I feel about many things :-)

How appropriate this sig is to this story, I must say!

Beh Tong Kah Beh Si!
[ Parent ]

yep (4.00 / 2) (#29)
by MotorMachineMercenary on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 09:17:49 PM EST

And it's even linked to in the original story :)

My bodyweight is muscle and cock MMM
Tenured K5 uberdouchebag Herr mirleid
Meatgazer Frau gr3y

[ Parent ]
Humor (3.66 / 6) (#27)
by quam on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 08:55:54 PM EST

The majority of sites you listed are provided for humor. Of course each person is unique; one person may find material humorous and another may not. But we all know what the material is. Victor Borge said "[h]umor [is] something that thrives between man's aspirations and his limitations. There is more logic in humor than in anything else. Because, you see, humor is truth."

Speaking of Legos, I enjoyed the film Lego Chef, a spoof of Iron Chef with legos. This is a good example because someone who has not seen Iron Chef would likely consider the film to be "utterly useless" while someone who has seen Iron Chef will likely find it humorous.

-- U.S. Patent 5443036 concerns a device for encouraging a cat to exercise by chasing a light spot.
Isn't it funny... (3.42 / 7) (#30)
by handle on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 09:53:20 PM EST

That 99% of stuff on the internet is crap but having a meta-discussion about that crap is not.

Useless != worthless (3.50 / 6) (#31)
by fluffy grue on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 10:05:40 PM EST

Art in general serves no practical purpose - as such, it fits the dictionary definition of "useless." Does that make it not worth peoples' time?

It's a distraction, but we, as a species, need distractions, or else we get burned out, jaded, tired, we go insane, we feel withdrawn, we have no outlet for creativity or pent-up emotion. Whether it's humor or beauty, it's still "useless," and yet it's still needed.

None of those sites you linked to are "crap" either, at least not to me. They're bizarre, funny, silly, and they represent at least some effort being put into a joke. If you want to find actual crap, try trolling Geocities for a while.

Hell, even goatse.cx has its purposes and its audiences. It might be unsettling to some people, but at least it makes them less (heh) uptight, right? It catches people off-guard, and it makes them pay more attention to what they click on before they click on it, in theory. (Of course, some people never learn.)

What use is something like explodingdog? It makes you think, it's an outlet for emotion, it disarms you, it reminds you of the beauty of the world if you're willing to be naïve enough.

What use are toys? I just bought myself a razor scooter. It's not exactly the most practical form of transportation or exercise, and hell, they're damned silly. But I like silly. If I don't have enough silly in my day, I go bonkers, and we wouldn't want that, would we?

I don't see how one can effectively file things which are funny into the "useless crap" category, in any case. What kind of anal-retentive, humorless freak are you to believe that?

"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]

well (4.00 / 1) (#33)
by MotorMachineMercenary on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 10:55:04 PM EST

[I'll just ignore the trolling part]

And I got an editorial comment for posting something tasteless. At least I was blatant about it.

Pretty damn clever, you fooled me into looking into the heart of darkness! :)

My bodyweight is muscle and cock MMM
Tenured K5 uberdouchebag Herr mirleid
Meatgazer Frau gr3y

[ Parent ]
Irony (4.00 / 1) (#34)
by fluffy grue on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 11:04:40 PM EST

The irony is, of course, that there were two links which were completely inappropriate. Can you find the other one? :)
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]
[ Parent ]

Well... (3.00 / 1) (#35)
by pb on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 11:23:49 PM EST

The goatse.cx link was misplaced, the hunger site doesn't have much to do with razor scooters, and...

we've seen what happens when you go bonkers; we don't want that, especially not here! :)
"See what the drooling, ravening, flesh-eating hordes^W^W^W^WKuro5hin.org readers have to say."
-- pwhysall
[ Parent ]
Almost right :) (4.50 / 2) (#39)
by fluffy grue on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 02:18:10 AM EST

The link supposedly to goatse.cx went to hungersite. It was razor scooters which wen tto goatse.cx. Oh, and Scoop's actually got decent spam controls in it, and I don't think it's nearly as easily spammable. (Unlike Slash which has really shitty spam controls which require massive admin intervention to really be effective, which doesn't work when spamming really old stories which are just about to be archived. :)
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]
[ Parent ]

to be perfectly honest (3.00 / 1) (#36)
by MotorMachineMercenary on Wed Jan 17, 2001 at 11:27:25 PM EST

I'm afraid to try it out and find it after goatse.cx (still can't believe you fooled me, I've seen it earlier, too). And I'm not easily, umm, moved...

My bodyweight is muscle and cock MMM
Tenured K5 uberdouchebag Herr mirleid
Meatgazer Frau gr3y

[ Parent ]
Ack! (none / 0) (#42)
by Elendale on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 05:02:34 PM EST

Bad fluffy! Bad! At least you don't get 500 people uselessly replying here...


When free speech is outlawed, only criminals will complain.

[ Parent ]
Talk about not paying attention ;) (5.00 / 1) (#44)
by fluffy grue on Fri Jan 19, 2001 at 02:03:18 AM EST

Even after rambling about keeping people "on their toes," people still ended up clicking on my goatse.cx link. Don't people ever check their status bars to make sure that the link doesn't really go to goatse.cx? I mean, jeeze, some people are so blind, even when you point it out to them, they end up clicking on a goatse.cx link. It's pretty silly... I mean, you should know better than to click on goatse.cx links, right?
"Is not a quine" is not a quine.
I have a master's degree in science!

[ Hug Your Trikuare ]
[ Parent ]

lol (none / 0) (#46)
by Elendale on Fri Jan 19, 2001 at 05:27:14 PM EST

Yes, this is true. OTOH, tasteful goatse.cx links can be funny.

-Elendale (Note that the above is not funny)

When free speech is outlawed, only criminals will complain.

[ Parent ]
the problems isn't uselessness (3.00 / 3) (#38)
by kei on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 01:47:44 AM EST

It's not that there's anything wrong with the Web filled with sites like Lego Porn (which I haven't visited, but it sounds amusing enough). After all, the Web contains a wealth of information, useless to you but useful to others.

A bigger problem is the terrible signal to noise ratio of locating relevant information. This is why search engines are so useful, and why the absence of indexing even that small percentage of the Web would bring Web use down to its knees.

The question is what we can do to improve the signal to noise ratio. That's more of a question of how to better deliver the content, I think, than whether site Foo deserves to belong on the Web. It's not about how "dumb" a site is, but rather how Foo can more reliably target the people interested in Foo's content, and prevent the uninterested from wasting their time.
"[An] infinite number of monkeys typing into GNU emacs would never make a good program."
- /usr/src/linux/Documentation/CodingStyle

That is what makes the net good... (4.66 / 3) (#41)
by cr0sh on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 12:55:56 PM EST

The internet has always been like this - and I personally think it's a good thing. Some of these sites are fun to look at, just to get a VERY different perspective on things. I think the problem currently is that the sites are sooo obscure. I tend to wonder about these "islands", that go unreported in search engines many time, and sometimes can only be found by going through the bookmarks of other people (some people post thier bookmarks on the net - a handy way of finding wacky sites). I have seen sites in the past about very strange concepts - some so strange, you couldn't even begin to describe them. One of my favorite sites is:


It is called Info-Neurosis.

Kinda appropriate - I have a ton of these "wierd" links. I only wish more people knew about these strange sites - much more worthwhile visiting than the commercial crap out there...

Remember... (none / 0) (#45)
by WWWWolf on Fri Jan 19, 2001 at 10:36:48 AM EST

Remember the old piece of wisdom from Principia Discordia...

Bullshit makes the flowers grow & that's beautiful.

-- Weyfour WWWWolf, a lupine technomancer from the cold north...

Utterly useless | 46 comments (29 topical, 17 editorial, 0 hidden)
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