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Web's Increasingly Worldly Flavor Threatens Americans' Worldview

By enterfornone in MLP
Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 08:38:34 AM EST
Tags: Culture (all tags)
Culture

A topic close to the hearts of many on K5, Satirewire reports that the "profusion of international news available on the Internet has made it increasingly difficult for the average American to ignore the rest of the world, a trend researchers say threatens Americans' long, proud history of disregarding anything not about them."


Thankfully there is hope, the makers of censorware Net Nanny have announced they will create Net Narrow, which will allow users to block stories based on keywords such as "Shiite," "post-Apartheid," and "Bob Geldof."

Thankfully it is unlikely that Kuro5hin will be blocked by such software :)

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Web's Increasingly Worldly Flavor Threatens Americans' Worldview | 40 comments (26 topical, 14 editorial, 0 hidden)
Inevitiable (3.33 / 6) (#2)
by nobbystyles on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 06:16:08 AM EST

In a way the US is quite an isolated country culturally. For example virually everyone else in the world plays soccer but not the US. Also foreign made movies and TV shows don't really air in the US in the mainstream media. In these areas the barriers to entry of non-Usians are very high as you need mass consumer paricipation to make these things pay.

However on the internet the barriers of entry are lower and also memes are spread very quickly through viral like exchange of web adddreses via hyperlinks. So a site like the BBC news or the Register can be taken as seriously by Americans as their own media despite being of Ukanian origin.

However I think there are limits as the language problems arise. We are probably missing out on interesting sites in Spanish or German because we don't speak the language. And we may be able to guess at the content of thses sites but non European languages sites in Chinese or Japanese or ven more inpenetrable.

Gah (4.14 / 7) (#3)
by Miniluv on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 06:45:43 AM EST

In fact, the US does play soccer, there is a professional league, and who won the last Women's World Cup?

Foreign movies do in fact show in America, some of us even watch them. Sorry that we don't show all 1000+ Indian made movies every year, but hell I don't think they show them all.

Sure we might be narrow minded, but at least check your facts before calling us that.

"Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
[ Parent ]

The US (none / 0) (#39)
by aphrael on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 05:12:55 PM EST

has the best women's soccer team in the world. It's mens team, while it has been good enough recently to qualify for the world cup, sucks. And there is very little support for local soccer teams or a nationwide league --- attendence at MLS games is miniscule --- which is dramatically different from, say, Europe, or Latin America.

[ Parent ]
The difference between hyperbole and bullshit (none / 0) (#40)
by Miniluv on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 09:46:58 PM EST

Is merely that you feel the need to qualify one after realizing you said it.

"Its like someone opened my mouth and stuck a fistful of herbs in it." - Tamio Kageyama, Iron Chef 'Battle Eggplant'
[ Parent ]
Inevitiable (3.14 / 7) (#5)
by eLuddite on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 07:08:40 AM EST

In a way the US is quite an isolated country culturally.

The political history of the settled United States is a history of isolationism. In world history the US is, of course, irrelevant until after WWII.

This is the reason why Americans are largely fat people without culture. I have no idea, currently, why the thin, cultured people in the rest of the world are suddenly so gung ho over American culture, aka Baywatch. This may be an example of "irony" but its hard to be certain ever since that american cultural icon, Alanis Moreisless, perverted its dictionary meaning.

But seriously, if it wasnt for America the Chinese would have long since sailed across and enslaved Finland and where would our precious Linux be then?

---
God hates human rights.
[ Parent ]

Actually (5.00 / 1) (#14)
by Spendocrat on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 11:35:03 AM EST

Both incarnations - Alanis and Alanis Morisette - are Canadian.

[ Parent ]
SSSSSSSSSHHHH! (4.66 / 3) (#26)
by ZanThrax on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 06:33:15 PM EST

If the Americans want to take credit for her, let them!

Before flying off the handle over the suggestion that your a cocksucker, be sure that you do not, in fact, have a cock in your mouth.
[ Parent ]

Facinating that you say this less then a week... (4.66 / 3) (#15)
by ucblockhead on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 11:36:42 AM EST

after the American film industry nominated a film without a word of dialogue in any indoeuropean language for best picture, best director, and eight other things.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]
But (none / 0) (#35)
by retinaburn on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 10:55:44 AM EST

This does not happen with regularity. How many foreign films were made in the last year were better than half the movies nominated ?

A few special cases does not make the statement false. He/She/They/It said it was difficult not impossible.

I think that we are a young species that often fucks with things we don't know how to unfuck. -- Tycho


[ Parent ]
That all depends... (none / 0) (#36)
by ucblockhead on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 11:38:59 AM EST

On what you call "foreign".

Films made by Englishmen, Canadians, New Zealanders and Australians are often nominated. Remember, this is not the first time that Ang Lee has gone to the oscars with a nominated film.

But in terms of "better", well, many American films were better than half those nominated as well. The "Oscars" aren't necessarily the best movies.
-----------------------
This is k5. We're all tools - duxup
[ Parent ]
I simply meant (none / 0) (#37)
by retinaburn on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 03:15:58 PM EST

I took your comment to mean to say "Sig, if its so hard to puncture the american mass media why is CT,HD up for so many awards."

I simply wanted to point out that this was a special case for such and 'unamerican' film to be nominated. However I do think that the current (read temporary) trend in the American mass media market is to be more open to foreign/different movies. Independant films are also getting more attention lately.

I think that we are a young species that often fucks with things we don't know how to unfuck. -- Tycho


[ Parent ]
No soccer please! (none / 0) (#32)
by decaf_dude on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 01:56:04 AM EST

Being a Euro nitpick that I am, I have to point this out: only in the US does one play soccer, everywhere else we play football.

--
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=89158&cid=7713039


[ Parent ]
Not quite true ... (none / 0) (#34)
by ajf on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 07:48:10 AM EST

It's generally referred to as soccer in Australia too.

"Football" in Australia is much more likely to be either rugby league or Australian rules football, depending on what state you're in.



"I have no idea if it is true or not, but given what you read on the Web, it seems to be a valid concern." -jjayson
[ Parent ]
True ... (none / 0) (#38)
by aphrael on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 05:10:47 PM EST

For example virually everyone else in the world plays soccer but not the US

On the bright side, that makes it easier for US soccer fans to get world cup tickets when our team qualifies. :)

[ Parent ]

Oh my (3.71 / 7) (#9)
by gregholmes on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 08:51:54 AM EST

This is certainly an inferiority complex. It is rather sad.

Hint - regularly taking offense and thinking that you need to take the U.S. down a notch is a dead giveaway of a lack of confidence in yourself and your culture.



Lions, tigers, bears (4.00 / 4) (#10)
by 0xdeadbeef on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 10:29:22 AM EST

How true. I'm an American and I have no confidence in my culture. That's what makes this so damn funny.

[ Parent ]
As some of your countrymen have found out.. (none / 0) (#24)
by donky on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 06:23:45 PM EST

As some of your countrymen have found out when visiting New Zealand, unjustified arrogance will get you shown the door with a kick up the arse.

Your delusions are what is sad :)



[ Parent ]
delusions (none / 0) (#33)
by gregholmes on Tue Feb 20, 2001 at 05:46:26 AM EST

What "delusions" are you talking about? I'm not the one who feels the need to post a silly "story" taking potshots at a country of which I'm jealous.



[ Parent ]
Is Kuro5hin American? (3.50 / 4) (#17)
by tnt on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 03:16:49 PM EST

Just as a side note. I've noticed that Kuro5hin seems to be an American website. Whether it is suppose to be or not, I don't know....

Many of the articles I see in the submission cue seem to make the assumption that the readers of Kuro5hin are all from the USA.

I wonder what the demographics of the Kuro5hin readership is. (How many people from the USA? How many people from Canada? Etc.) And wonder if other readers of Kuro5hin get the impression that Kuro5hin is a American site?... or not?



--
     Charles Iliya Krempeaux, B.Sc.
__________________________________________________
  Kuro5hin user #279

Poll Question? (5.00 / 1) (#21)
by infraoctarine on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 04:27:48 PM EST

I wonder what the demographics of the Kuro5hin readership is. (How many people from the USA? How many people from Canada? Etc.)

That would make an interresting poll question. I (quickly) checked past polls but didn't find any such poll. I'm sure there are mostly USians, but how many non-USians are there? Personally, I'd like to know how many scandinavians there are around here :)

[ Parent ]

What's so sad...... (3.00 / 3) (#18)
by radar bunny on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 04:14:49 PM EST

Is that its hardly even satire. I honestly beleive there would be a real market for something like this. I mean i started off laughing when reading this and almost ended in tears because there is just so much truth in there.

I mean, that's why the Internet is called America Online, right? Oh that one nearly killed me.

and you know (4.50 / 2) (#20)
by spacejack on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 04:20:14 PM EST

what they call it here? AOL Canada. Think about that one for a sec.

[ Parent ]
Could have been a bit more meaty (4.00 / 3) (#19)
by spacejack on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 04:18:12 PM EST

I think there are a few interesting things to point out here. Maybe you would have gotten less flammage.. who knows. Anyhow.

The US is the worlds major media exporter. It probably is with the internet too, however the feedback mechanisms (like here on K5 and on CNN's messageboards for example) finally let the rest of the world know what they think -- without being filtered through a localized network news affiliate. Now, for the first time, somebody from nowheresville U.S.A. can actually come across viewpoints that differ from what they've been fed all their lives. This is of course true here in Canada too (and the rest of the world I'm sure). However we all have the advantage of getting both the USA view and the world view -- not just one or the other. IME, the US does a lot more filtering and spin on their news than we do here or any other western European countries I've been to. One of the interesting things about visiting the US is that you really do feel there is a blocking mechanism at work in the mainstream media. This is not to say that the U.S. is lacking for alternative media; it just seems to be a lot more lopsided and polarized than elsewhere.

Anyhow, just my impression.

American Culture (3.83 / 6) (#22)
by Strongtium90 on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 05:06:32 PM EST

As an American, I find this obssesion with Americans quite bizzare. I don't know why you care that we ignore you. Specificall, why is it so important to Non-Americans that Americans don't really care for Soccer? Do you bug the Kiwis for their love of Rugby? I like Kiwis in that way. I dislike the French in that very same way(BTW I am 50% French, though not culturally).

Don't live your life trying to seek acceptence from others. You will always feel empty.

Easy Question (4.00 / 5) (#23)
by Simon Kinahan on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 05:40:06 PM EST

Because you're bigger than we are. Thus we need to find ways to feel superior to you. The Greeks did it to the Romans, as well. You have pretty much a self contained world in the USA, and therefore can ignore the rest of the world. Everyone else is pretty much either dependent on the US in one way or another, or in conflict with it, often both (see bananas, bovine growth hormone etc) and therefore has to find a good reason for being different (and therefore a reason for being superior).

Simon

If you disagree, post, don't moderate
[ Parent ]
Too funny.. (4.40 / 5) (#30)
by Mr. Excitement on Mon Feb 19, 2001 at 10:48:47 PM EST

The SatireWire article was fantastic, but some posters seemed to take it as a literal truth.

One thing to keep in mind about mainstream American culture is that it is exported more than other mainstream media cultures. This makes it much easier, say, for a clueless American yokel to get on worldwide TV than a clueless yokel elsewhere.

This makes it tempting to imagine a vast country comprised entirely of idiots (or, at least, teeming with them), based on the perceptions of a few vocal yokels, and the mass-market orientation of the mainstream American press.

But the sad truth is that stupidity is a global phenomenon, and probably in similar proportions as found in the US, but until the day when any fool can get the same exposure as an American fool, the sterotype will persist.

1 141900 Mr. Excitement-Bar-Hum-Mal-Cha died in The Gnomish Mines on level 10 [max 12]. Killed by a bolt of lightning - [129]

Web's Increasingly Worldly Flavor Threatens Americans' Worldview | 40 comments (26 topical, 14 editorial, 0 hidden)
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