Hi everyone. Lately I've noticed a few things that I would like to address. now this mainly pertains to the outer web side of SL - mainly forums, plurks, what have you - but I've seen some of this in world also, and it concerns me somewhat...
First off is the use of deliberately mispronounced "cutsie" talk that reigns throughout message content as well as day to day conversation. for example:
"Hai there!" "I want moar!" "Izwatchinteh pr0n!"..........
You get the idea. I know you can't make it through a day without seeing this type of text somewhere(If not being guilty of it yourself). This type of text is derived from the internet meme known as "lolcats"...
While this type of text is perfect for the Neko population, when used by so-called "Normal" avatars it raises a few questions...
Lolcat speak, at it's core, is highly sarcastic. It's sole intent is to lampoon and poke fun. due to the sarcastic nature of lolcat speak it has been widely adopted by the internet "trolling" community.
Now for those of you who do not know what a troll (also known as a flamer or a griefer) is, here's a quick definition:
(According to Wikipedia) In Internet slang, a Troll is someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room or blog, with the primary intent of provoking other users into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion.
A Griefer is a player in a multiplayer video game that purposely irritates and harasses other players.
Flaming is hostile and insulting interaction between Internet users. Flaming usually occurs in the social context of a discussion board, Internet Relay Chat (IRC), by e-mail or on Video-sharing websites. It is usually the result of the discussion of heated real-world issues like politics, sports, religion, and philosophy, or of issues that polarise subpopulations (for example, the perennial debating between PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 owners). Internet trolls frequently set out to incite flamewars for the sole purpose of offending or irritating other posters.
Now what does this mean for the average user? Well, when a troll approaches you and says "oh HAI!" That doesn't mean they are excited to see you, in fact it usually means they aren't too crazy about you at all and more than likely they are about to troll the crap out of you.
So if you approach someone in world or in a message board type of environment using "Hai!" as a greeting, chances are you are going to set that person on edge and put them into a defensive position that is very likely to cause a fight. All from one little word.
What does this all mean? Ladies and gentlemen, it saddens me to say we live in a world full of assholes, and if you don't believe me, scroll through the official SL topics and read the replies to the posted threads. 90% (and I'm being generous) of what you see there falls under the "flaming" definition.
The internet has taught us that we can be free to pointlessly harass others under a veil of anonymity all from the comfort of our living rooms. So the best way to combat this is to simply watch how we word our thoughts.
Watching the internets closely over the last few days I've seen a whole lot of drama, and I can guarantee you at least half of it started from someone misinterpreting something that someone said. That's easy to do online, and I'm sure we've all experienced it.
Now the other half was instigated by the usual drama mommas and the only way to combat against that is to not get involved. I don't care if they are your friends or family or if they have naughty pictures of you and are threatening blackmail, stay out of it. Drama mommas gain their power by being able to entice people into picking up their cause and following them into the fire (although the drama mommas are actually sitting it out and letting you do all the fighting for them).... Blah... just leave that mess alone. I've gone on a tangent... I digress...
Lolcat speak! It's cute, but dangerous... if you are non Neko, chances are you may accidently insult someone by using Lolcat speak with them. so just be careful how you use it.