Thursday, 12 April 2007

Ping ‘rage_hard_then_die’ and move on

Oak leaves unfurling in early Spring

Kathy Sierra is a 'celebrity' in the world of blogging. Her blog is intended to promote 'optimism, creating better user experiences, helping users spend more time in flow, and learning. '

How can it be, then, that a lady such as this has been forced to stay at home, terrified of death threats from an unbalanced 'troll'.

I wonder if there are psychotic monsters out there, hiding behind the apparent anonymity of untraceable IP addresses. Or if it is even more subtle and worrying?

Do we, reasonable and moderate people, become different when we control the mouse? Do our actions become intemperate, simply because we spend so long staring at our flat screens?

A couple of weeks ago I was flamed for wading into a forum to protect the memory of a friend whose reputation was being mocked. The sense of anger I felt was pretty real - no sense of virtual feelings here.

The story below tumbled out of a dark place with (I confess) a worrying ease. I think I ought to go and read Philip Zimbardo's new book (The Lucifer Effect).

Ping ‘rage_hard_then_die’ and move on

Ping_snear^owooo^shhh....thinking is for wussies, Descartes. I do and therefore I am. I surf and I am King. W00t...Yo, I’m ripping a Colombian line. Nescafe for junkies. Watch me sail, watch me fly right through you. Blink or get out of my way; yr buggin’ me with your unhealthy freak show. I am cadet: eat my dirt or die in a poxy ho.

Now, he’s gone off-line and has left me alone. I monitor their comings and their goings and their natural selections. I don’t need to listen to this inferior bleating tonight; I just need to win. Christ, downstairs I can hear the Eastenders music playing for the third time tonight. What sort of person needs to watch it three times just to understand the story? Thick as shit, that’s what. Story? There is no story.

This is the story. I sit, a funnel spider on its web, waiting for you to drop by.

Look at you, prodding and poking around. Who sent you to me tonight? Haven’t you got better things to do? Shall we talk, little girl? Type:

my name is mel ;)...wots yrs?

Will you stay, please stay, I want you to stay.

yrs is mel, 2? Like mel C or mel B? I lk U mel B.

Can U C my silly puppy? He’s called rags.

And so it goes. All night I can do this. They can’t see what I do with my left hand, whilst my right strokes my mouse. My left hand wraps round razor wire.

Ping_smear^weee^shhhit. Is it worth being nice? Will I gain – can you be frightened, just a little bit? Can you twist around my fingers? Just a little bit?

Come closer onto my web. I want to see you squirm.

No, quick.

Will you go, please go, I want you to go.

She’s coming upstairs – needs another piss. It’s all the tea that she... I close the door to... Don’t need her seeing me talk to you.

‘No, just a spreadsheet for work. You know what its like at the moment.’

Piss, wipe, flush, wash, dry, pull the light cord, pad downstairs: to chocolate and Midsomer murders.

So, here we are co-joined in the flat-screen twilight. You and I, drawn together across the spaces, with our mingled IP addresses. The talk of the ages.

What did you come here for? Who are you pretending to be tonight? Yourself? No, not here, not tonight. This is the masquerade. Come as a syphilitic corpse, or a buccaneer or a crucified messiah. Anything but you. Who would want to talk to you?

Will you stay, please stay, I want you to stay.

I certainly don’t.

mel B – I think U are a man. Fuck you and die a leper’s death.

I bar the IP address; the ghost fades from my screen.

Alone. Again. Waiting for traffic to drop by.

Traffic. IP addresses. Avatars. Monikers. User Names. Identities.

But never people. Never people with juices to taste and souls to suck dry.

The people left cyberspace long ago; only the vampires, the wraiths and the psychopomp pirates surf broadband today.

We blogged ourselves to death. And death is what we crave.

Drugs we can get online: delivered by moonlighting pizza boys on bikes.
Sex is mechanised and battery driven.
Power is in the hands of the biggest cocks.

Tomorrow I will change the world.

Come again.

Ping ‘Milgram’s legacy’ and pay

Everyone has a idea and mine is really cheap. Cheap is good, cheap is power. Cheap is me. Remember Stanley Milgram? He had the right idea, but got the wrong ending. It wasn’t the 14 who refused to give the experimental subjects 400 volts of electricity who were the heroes. It was the 26 who pressed the fire button that we should celebrate. Homo superior: the brave new world of cybernauts.

Oh, I saw the film of them in action: all hand-wringing and sweating protests. ‘I refuse to take responsibility’. What kind of white liberal crap is that? Press the play button anyway and Ping_snear^owooo^shhh, off they go to oblivion.
Oh, yes they were shocked when they saw what they did; yes they were relieved that it got them off the hook.

But what a hook. They might run blubbering to priests and analysts, but which of them in the middle of their night-sweats could regret the moment when they felt for the only time in their lives the primal sense of lust, the sweetest sense of freedom, the original source of power in their veins. The breath of life in their lungs; the screaming, tearing invincibility.

Then the slow come down which lasts forever: the guilt, the tears, the shame.

The shame of what? The wistful regret that the moment could not last longer. That they could not return to the place again.

Milgram, you corrupted us! You explained away our darkest impulses; you removed our right to be wrong.

So, I’m writing wrongs. Think of me as a liberal-slayer, an evangelist for the dark-side.

And visit

Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends We're so glad you could attend Come inside! Come inside!

Pay up front using your PayCheck account. $50 dollars for entry to the ride (additional surcharges may apply) – oh but what a place for an evening well spent. Choose your partner for the evening from our extensive menu bar. Girls, boys, lesbian couples*. Black, Asian or Eastern European. Choose naked or clothed. Choose eighteen+ or underage legal.

*(ladyboys, jews and queers are available at 48 hours notice; cost to be negotiated in advance).

Then, choose the questions: easy, medium or hard. For each incorrect answer you get to press the button. And kerpow! A real electrical shock. None of this liberal poncing about with stooges and confederates. The real schizzle. The big deal.


Watch them squirm, watch them cry out, watch their skin burn, hear them swear, cry out to their gods, see them vomit and sweat, let them fall to the ground unconcious, only to be brought back again for the next question.

Which question you will ask?

How far will you dare go?

There is a clock running, the meter is racking up the costs. Do you want to go just a little higher, up to the magic 400 volts? Dare you, should you, will you? Will you take the ultimate challenge*?

*(additional surcharges will apply, calculated on a unit rate per volt above 150 volts)

A film of the encounter will be placed on a secure website for you to download for a modest cost; after all, you will want to savour every moment, relive each second of the ultimate thrill ride.

I am thinking of branching out into merchandise. Lampshades and book covers made from their skin; organic compost from their decomposed wastes.

It pays to be green these days.

Do you know just how cost-effective this is? The subjects come almost free of charge. The people carriers are glad to find their traffic secure homes, where they will not run away to cause embarrassing trouble. No identities, no fuss, no mess. Pile ‘em high and sell them dear: the next step in pornography.

Deal or no deal?
You’ll love it to death.
Wanna try some?

1 comment:

rhino towers said...

Jeez. I wouldnt like to meet him on a web forum, would you?