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December 30, 2004

12 Laws of the Internet

I ran across this 'oldie but goodie' in a folder of saved stuff... You may have already seen this from somewhere else, but it was something I thought was amusing.

From: "Martha Brummett"
Newsgroups: alt.astrology
Subject: The Twelve Laws of the Internet
Date: 13 Dec 1997 13:46:46 GMT

Although it was posted elsewhere, I found this to have peculiar application
to this group. Of course I'm the 4,000th person to have done so! :-)

Gary E. wrote
The Twelve Laws of the Internet

1. If you post and pretend to be a fool, people will believe that you are a fool.
Corollary: If you then post and explain that you were only pretending, nobody will change their mind.

2. The Net-Nature is very simple. Usenet is *not* dominated by the smartest people, the most interesting people, or the most learned people. It is dominated by the people who want to tell other people their opinions. To expect anything else is absurd.

3. Similarly, the topics that dominate any given newsgroup are not the most interesting, the most helpful, or the most useful. They're the most acrimonious and the most dissent-laden. How else could things possibly turn out?

4. A person who says, "Sorry, I had to point that out to you" is always telling two lies. Ditto for "Sorry, I couldn't pass this up." "I see your point but...." means the opposite.

5. When a fool posts deliberate flamebait, he has no influence over whether he/she succeeds. You do.

6. It is easy to patronize the author of the post in which you agree. It is equally as easy for the author to patronize you back.

This can go on for weeks on end.

Corollary: You will look clever to the people who already agree with you and like a fool to the rest of us.

Second Corollary: If you post to a newsgroup to which you are new and a prominent personage patronizes you, that can also go on for weeks on end.

7. If you feel you know something funny or clever or wise, you may decide to post it here. Please keep in mind, you are the 4,000th person to do so.

8. If you hate something, there is a newsgroup where people are discussing it. Abortion, recovery, Republicans, eating meat, tattooing, worship, bondage, whatever. You will be tempted to appear on that newsgroup and point out to everyone the error of their ways. Please keep in mind that you are the 4,000th person to do so.

9. If something is particularly funny, clever, or wise, then you will be the 4,000th person *this month.*

10. You, personally, are a unique, exciting, vibrant, intelligent, wise, and self effacing individual with a great deal to contribute to the newsgroups you select on the Net. So is every other schmuck who posts. Get over it.

11. The demise of this newsgroup and the Net is imminent--and always will be.......

12. It's not a super-highway. It's not a fishnet. It's not a surfable ocean, a maze, a 3 dimensional space of lights, a city or a game. It's not a cocktail party an argument or a home. It *is*, what it *is*. You will never prove yourself "cool" or an "insider" by using the "hip" metaphors or slogans of your group to try to control or impress other people. This interlinked computer system of the world doesn't need names, judgments, explanations, or justification---it just *is*. The playing field is level and if you don't like it, you must not be used to equality.

12a. Internet gurus on a specific topic are a dime a dozen. It is the people who don't know much who are rare.

Patented, 1993

Posted to alt.astrology by Martha Brummett

Posted by BlueWolf on December 30, 2004 11:38 AM