How Teenagers Ruined the Internet

by Zach Hescox

When Al Gore invented the internet, it was seen as the perfect tool for global communication and networking. For the first time in history, people across the world could send information back and forth in the blink of an eye; more like 56 thousand kilobytes per second, but close enough.

When the internet invaded the public life, it changed everything. Anyone with something to say and half an hour in front of a computer screen could log their minds into the unending depths of cyber space. And so blogging was born….

The first bloggers were individuals on the edge of technology. They found that if they posted personal information about their lives, or about hot topics of public interest, they could spur vast dialogues over the internet. But as time went on, younger crowds joined up. Middle school and high school children began finding a variety of uses for the internet, including the blog bandwagon. And what groups of teenagers were using the internet? The only kind that knew how -- gamers and emo-punks.

Right now, I will break for a quick explanatory aside. The term blog is short for web-log, the internet being often referred to as the web. Emo-punk is a social label, standing for emotional punk (hereafter simply referred to as Emo), primarily centered about a certain brand of music that involves heartbreaking lyrics, whining effeminate vocals, and power chords.

Remember that most early blogging involves a personalized web diary of an individual. But what do the vast majority of suburban Emo kids have to say about their lives that could be that interesting? Absolutely nothing of importance -- and this is how the internet was ruined. Millions upon millions of bytes of information cramming the internet with “my girlfriend just dumped me this” or “I hate my parents that....” And to aid these jaded youngsters in their disconnected emotional outpouring, some greedy ad-space filling genius invented MySpace, and Zanga, and LiveJournal, and any other random site.

There is a bright side (not Bright Eyes), however. Truly intelligent people figured out that blogging can be used for the common good. Many citizens who would rather not read the crying mindlessness of high school drama created blogs, which talk about politics, or sports, or education -- such as this one. Political campaign workers are now using blogs to reach voters, and technology companies are turning blogs into new age focus groups.

So, I’m going to go stab myself with a lit cigarette, listen to some Panic! At The Disco and call my mother, because she’s the only one left in this world who loves me. And the best part is, for this and any other blog, if you don’t like it, you don’t even have to read it.


Anonymous said...

Al Gore invented the Internet?


You are too smart for The Net.

Molly Kenney said...

I don't think it's fair to pin blogging on emo kids. What about fan sites for boy bands and other pop phenomena that include regular contributors? The scantily clad 14-year-old Myspace Britney-wannabes who write about their boy troubles and fashion disasters? What about amateurs who blog on political issues?
I think emo kids just invented the bad blog.

P.S. I love your ending. It's fantastically dark, like my empty, lonely soul. : )

Rick Rockwell said...

I'm still waiting for the response back to the anonymous heckler.

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