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#1 Posted by weirdo (172 posts) -

Looking away from the moderation that the admin/mods are doing (or at least trying to) Is /b/ really the most democratic on the internet? You are literally able to post anything you want there, if it becomes popular then congratulations to you, if not? Your thread just sinks in down in that dark abysmal void of oblivion, forever forgotten.

To those don't know, I'll give you the rundown from what I have seen, I have seen (tragically) full blown hardcore racism thread (If you want to cry blood, good place to start) really bloody gore threads (which may or may not be deleted, I think it depends on how popular that thread gets) repulsive loli threads (It's like cp... only hentai...) I can't for the life of me figure out why some of them thrive, the start of a raid thread (sometimes Anonymous recruit there) or just prank calling this pawnshop for Battletoads.

Threads of stories ranging from feels to heroic acts or just plain hilarious (stupid) acts. Nudity threads of every kind (And I do mean of every kind) /b/ contains the best and the worse mankind has to offer, but yet, it has not yet been shut down. Why? It has full blown hardcore racism thread and every other threads which we want to keep off Giantbomb, neogaf and every other place but hasn't been shut off. In case there are any dudes/dudettes out there still wondering about the rule set there, let us make a comparison, I would like to thank Giantbomb in advance for adding the handy dandy forum rules to the right

  1. Topics advertising, promoting, soliciting and offering goods or services for commercial purposes and financial gain.
    Ironically, I can't get into detail here, but let me just say, there are some really clever people out there
  2. Topics that consist of random 'thoughts of the day', immature or inane content and purpose.
    If you hang out on imgur, funnyjunk or any other pictorial sharing websites you will sometimes see /b/ threads which fit this rule perfectly, here it isn't allowed but there, if it is really funny, you might create a thread which derails into Warhammer 40k fandom and then perhaps advanced theoretical physics.
  3. Topics linking to websites, images, videos or other material without any original commentary from the topic creator.
    There are singular words and single sentences to describe the complete 360 degree turn here, ranging from "oh lawd" to "I am the Master of my Faith, and no one is the Master of Who I am"

  1. No flaming, trolling, disruptive activity or posts which encourage such behavior.
    Depending on the situation, they might get the character in suspect fired from their job or jailed for lusting after your 15 year old cousin (this has happened ladies and gents)
  2. No victimization of others or use of discriminatory language.
    Oh lawd save me, they will come after you with raptors with laser teeth and serrated claws
  3. No discussion of illegal activities.
    If this rule was like a person, that person would be the most depressed person on the planet because he fails. Miserably
  4. No material of a pornographic, overtly sexual or macabre nature.
    Again, let us say this rule was a person. This person is beyond saving, this person has become a twisted shadow husk of his former self, while his tormentors enjoy the fact that they have literally created The Joker
  5. No alternate accounts.
    This rule does not exist

Isn't it kinda weird that /b/ has more freedom than we have? But then again, from what I have seen there and take my word for it. Be grateful for these rules, I thank the moderators for the job they are doing, for I do not want to see those threads here.

So, does /b/ represent true democracy on our web? If yes, is it a good thing?

#2 Edited by BisonHero (8564 posts) -

I don't think you really understand what the word democracy means. "Everybody can say and do what they want, and each person's contributions will sink or swim based on the merit of what they have to say" really isn't the same as democracy.

#3 Edited by BlastProcessing (947 posts) -

Jeff likes to sure the 4chan from time to time.

Take that as you will.

#4 Posted by BBAlpert (1858 posts) -

I wouldn't describe what /b/ is as "democracy," but rather something between libertarianism and wild west fucking lawlessness.

#5 Edited by Quemador (207 posts) -

You just found out about 4chan, right?

#6 Edited by CitizenCoffeeCake (835 posts) -

I'm sorry but what are you talking about? What is /b/? A 4chan thing? If you're saying you can post anything you want it sounds more like anarchy than democracy. But seriously, who cares?

#7 Posted by Canteu (2890 posts) -

The fuck is a /b/?

#8 Posted by Hailinel (25787 posts) -

\b\, for those that don't know, is 4chan's "random" board and is generally the cause and source of everything negative you hear about 4chan.

#9 Edited by TruthTellah (9653 posts) -

That isn't democracy. Though, I'm now curious what you think democracy is. Sounds like something more like a wild west mentality than anything to do with democracy.

If you want a "true" democracy, something like India is closer to that. Not that that's necessarily something to aspire toward. What you're describing is much more open-ended. A mix of extreme libertarianism or anarchy on the Internet. I don't find it at all weird that we might be opting for something different here.

#10 Edited by BaneFireLord (3094 posts) -

That's not democracy, that's fucking Darwinism.

#11 Posted by TowerSixteen (554 posts) -

Pretty sure mob rule isn't the same as democracy.

#12 Posted by audioBusting (1775 posts) -

It's a bit more like complete anarchy than democracy, isn't it? I honestly don't know the difference when it comes to internet forums.

#13 Posted by Gruebacca (677 posts) -

Don't fall into the freedom = democracy trap. Those are two completely different words with different meanings, and as such we have two different words assigned to those meanings.

If there is democracy in \b\, that implies that the users are in complete control of the board. Instead, we have the guys on top who periodically decide on getting rid of certain threads. If this was a democracy, the 4chan users would decide whether or not a thread deserves to live, let alone become popular.

As far as freedom goes, there isn't any other place like \b\. Tread carefully.

#14 Posted by PandaBear (1484 posts) -

So /b/ is like a system of government where representatives of the people are voted for by the people?


#15 Posted by Itwongo (1538 posts) -

/b/ is more like the animal kingdom.

#16 Posted by Xeiphyer (5684 posts) -

I think its more like a Monarchy because... wait a second, I just learned how to use a dictionary, Nevermind!

#17 Posted by familyphotoshoot (703 posts) -

who /fit/ here?

#18 Posted by ch3burashka (5596 posts) -

I'm not going to look up definitions for any of the terms I'm about to use, but if I understand correctly, democracy means people vote and then act based on the majority vote, which isn't what /b/ does. I think it would be more accurately defined as an anarchy, in which everyone does what they want. Anarchy isn't necessarily bad - sometimes /b/ does good things (find criminals based on video footage and scouring the web) because the people have chosen to do so on their own, thus still an anarchy.

#19 Posted by flasaltine (1855 posts) -

No. /b/ is like an anarchist, post-apocalyptic, cyber shit hole.

#20 Posted by chrissedoff (2245 posts) -

Pretty sure mob rule isn't the same as democracy.

This sums it up nicely. 4chan is a real good place to go to get positive feedback for indulging in all of the worst human instincts.

#21 Posted by ArbitraryWater (12890 posts) -

I'm pretty sure anarchy is the term you're looking for.

#22 Posted by connerthekewlkid (1872 posts) -
#23 Posted by Mechanical_Ape (272 posts) -

While I've never been there before, it sounds like it would be best described as a form of limited government libertarianism. Most message boards on the internet would fit into that description actually. Like libertarianism as a whole, it supports a widely diminished if not completely removed form of government. Unlike full libertarianism (or anarchy), it does support the existence of a government only to provide services that cannot be adequately operated by individuals, such as defense. In this case, the mods would be the government, stepping in only when absolutely necessary to provide defense but otherwise allowing the individuals to do as they please.

A graduate degree in political science and I'm using it to talk about 4chan. Although I suppose it's a good example of why I generally think libertarianism is crap.

#24 Posted by Korolev (1796 posts) -

"more freedom" - oh yes, we poor Giant Bomb Users, LANGUISHING in the COLD TYRANNIC GRIP of the GB MODERATORS. TOTALLY UNABLE to go to ANY other site on the internet, constrained, captive and held by the dark power of CBSi! How DARE a private company that pays and runs its own website not IMMEDIATELY adopt the practices that ANOTHER forum uses. After all, GB is a public owned, tax-payer funded service which has to respect the First Amendment, right? And of course, because another forum has no rules, ALL FORUMS EVER HAVE TO HAVE NO RULES.

This is about FREEDOMguys!


#25 Edited by weirdo (172 posts) -

From what I have read, there isn't a fixed point of what it, I DO however possess a picture of what it kinda looks like

If you look at specimen A

You can clearly see it in humane shape, and Specimen B is when /b/ decides to gently up

I would like to thank the FFSTV artist for these drawings (FarFromSubtle)

In 4chan, the users do choose which threads fails and which one wins, provided if the thread is actually any good, so in a way, interpreted this into a mayor candidate (lame comparison I know but it's 04:27 right now... Give me a break) Either 2 candidates presents themselves to the public, the anon posting in the thread is introducing himself, as he secretly laughs for he thinks the thread will be pure pwnage, he notices the other candidate is getting more attention for his speech (thread) is more interesting than his, through votes (posts) it is easy to see which thread won and which won lost. So, it is KINDA democratically but is more based on sociology-political interests. I wonder which system /b/ fits perfectly well in, it's not anarchism because it IS moderated, and so far extends my political knowledge.


I just noticed your post, interesting, what would you call it? Is there even a political name for it?

#26 Posted by FunkasaurasRex (855 posts) -

@flacracker said:

No. /b/ is like an anarchist, post-apocalyptic, cyber shit hole.

@arbitrarywater said:

I'm pretty sure anarchy is the term you're looking for.

I'm pretty sure there are anarchists who would take issue with any association with /b/

#27 Posted by Zero_ (2016 posts) -

Hmm. Not really. /b/ is what manifests when there's an anonymous, no punishment community. That's not democracy. You could argue that, should the "majority" want that to be so in real life, but again, reality is not anonymous.

#28 Edited by RonGalaxy (3686 posts) -

My friends in high school were super into 4chan and /b/, so naturally they tried to get me into it.

Spoiler block contains me describing my first (and final) experience visiting /b/, so naturally it is graphic. Figured I'd warn you

The first thing I ever saw opening that fabled URL was a gallery of pictures featuring a man going to the catacombs of Paris where all of the human skulls are stacked, taking one and skull fucking it's eye socket with his turgidly pink, erect penis.

So my answer is me crying myself to sleep, waking up and feeling like shit and then slapping you in the face for reminding me of that horrible shit-stain of a website

#29 Edited by Itwastuesday (1094 posts) -

is posting a dark picture of my ass similar to marxism

#30 Posted by Rick_Fingers (525 posts) -

Pro tip: when delivering a dissertation on the internet, it is often considered a good idea to actually read the definitions of the words you use.

#32 Posted by weirdo (172 posts) -

@rick_fingers: I haven't slept for 19 hours and going because of anxiety, this has been going on for weeks, I am really lacking sleep, cut me some slack plez <3

#33 Posted by Mechanical_Ape (272 posts) -

@weirdo: It's generally just called limited government libertarianism, which is a bit of a mouthful. I think I've also seen it called minarchism at times, although I don't know if they are necessarily the exact same or just slightly different versions of the same general idea. Political theory and philosophy isn't really my area of expertise.

#34 Edited by Slaegar (792 posts) -

edit: Safety first

#35 Edited by Kevin_Cogneto (1363 posts) -

@slaegar said:

On 4chan people call each other names that would ban you from almost any website (including this one) and it isn't even an insult.

4chan isn't something strange.

4chan is all of us.

The thing we want to say, the thing we all want to say, but can't.

Speak for yourself, duder. Not all of us want to go through life hurling insults at one another. What you call censorship, I call simple human decency.

EDIT: Hah, you censored yourself, nice work.

#37 Edited by Animasta (14824 posts) -

it really doesn't. /b/ is the worst and if you think that's representative of anything but stupid internet people I pity you.

I mean, fuck, I've been on 4chan plenty of times; /lgbt/ isn't the worst forum for that stuff I've seen, and /u/ helps me keep up on yuri. /b/ is still the worst though

#38 Posted by Oldirtybearon (5291 posts) -

I like /b/. I think you need to have a thicker skin to hang out there than most places or, at least, not take yourself so seriously, but in general it's just random people doing and saying whatever for laughs. Or to be shocking. Or to make a point. /b/ is random personified, and I love that board for all the laughter it's given me over the years.

#39 Posted by TurboMan (8246 posts) -

What good has ever come from /b/?

#40 Posted by dudeglove (9453 posts) -
#41 Edited by Hunter5024 (6447 posts) -

I have grown up to think of 4chan as the dark cave in the middle of the forest that the whole village says not to go into.

#42 Edited by SharkEthic (1088 posts) -

Does /b/ represent true democracy on our web?

No, the two things are incomparable.

Is that a good thing?

Your question makes no sense to begin with.

#44 Posted by AMyggen (5054 posts) -

@kill: I used to spend a huge amount of time on 4chan in my youth, and I generally agree. Most of the sub-forums are okay, but /b/ is an has always been a shithole. It's from that section most of the horror stories appear, and for good reason. Sure, there's some good stuff posted on that forum too, but too much disgusting shit for me to deal with.

4chan is an interesting place though, /b/ shows you what happens when you just let people be people on the internet.

#45 Posted by Gamer_152 (14299 posts) -

/b/ is less a democracy and more people throwing up their hands and going "What if there was no societal order whatsoever?" to which of course the answer is "Horrible things". It's not weird that /b/ has more freedom that this site because complete freedom is anarchy, you need some restrictions within any community to stop it from descending into complete chaos and allowing the negative elements way too much power.

#46 Posted by joshwent (2840 posts) -

@mechanical_ape: Please don't drag Libertarianism into this. It's slandered and misunderstood enough without being compared to possibly the most horrible place on the internet.

To the OP, political systems just aren't representative nor applicable to a message board. But if you're looking for a site with Democratic-like systems in the sense that posts live/die based on user votes, Reddit is exactly that. 4chan is more like being trapped in a dark sewer. All you can do is step in some shit.

#47 Posted by forkboy (1384 posts) -

Look, unfiltered nastiness, "random" lulz, & tits are not democracy, as everyone else has said.

Incidentally, as someone sympathetic to anarchist thinking, I do my best to convince myself that people aren't really like that & it's just bored teenagers hiding behind the veil of anonymity & they'd not be quite that cunty in real life.

#48 Edited by Darji (5412 posts) -

No. mobbing and stalking people and literally ruining their lives who have other opinions than you is not democracy at all. You should always have the freedom of stating your opinion but lynching people who does not think like that is just terrorism and criminal.

#49 Posted by Crysack (463 posts) -

I have grown up to think of 4chan as the dark cave in the middle of the forest that the whole village says not to go into.

And yet, at the end of the day, it's just another internet forum. Its bad reputation is symptomatic of the fact that its userbase is enormous and so it tends to have some idiots who enjoy causing trouble. Plenty of the boards contain relatively civil discussion.

#50 Edited by Brodehouse (10647 posts) -

It's not democracy. Democracy would suggest that there are votes to determine the official stance of /b about something. What /b is is a place of near-absolute freedom of expression, with everything that entails. Positive and negative.

You can tell a lot about people by how much they fear the intentions of others.