Why does the internet feel less special and interesting now than it did in the mid 00s -


So I was on the internet archive looking up a forum I used to post on and immediately the first thing you notice is how different everything was, in a good way.
Back then the web was so much more interesting and the culture was so much more lively and unique.
People on websites like last.fm and myspace had their profiles neatly decorated, they had avatars representing memes that were truly original and representive of internet culture.
People weren't afraid to say whatever was on their mind and no one was going to banish them from the internet or guilt trip them into suicide for saying something offensive.
The internet of 2000 - 2007 felt so unique and special, it felt like a magical land of imagination and creativity.
And no none of this has anything to do with novelty because when I visit these pages from 2007 and so I still feel exactly the same as I did back then.
The internet of today is so much more bland and dull.
Everything is so uniform, conformist and soulless.
What the fuck happened that made the internet feel so dramatically different?

Dick Justice

Where have all the cowdogs gone?
It's become centralized, monetized, and surveilled. The fun of the "old" net was in exploration, experimentation, and vibrance more or less for its own sake. The fall of the "old" fun net parallels the rise of "remember to like, comment, subscribe, and donate to my Patreon!" pretty accurately.

The other thing that people forget is while all of this still exists, it's small and getting smaller because it's so inaccessible. Whereas the chaotic "old" net was formerly the default, now most can't even imagine anything outside the new corporate branded net and of those that can, few can even articulate it well enough to know what to look for themselves, nevermind relate it to others. We are talking about an aesthetic, after all.

E: There's a lot of accusations in the thread that somehow the lowest common denominator of the internet has gotten lower, as if the 00s internet was some kind of super sekrit club where everyone read Neuromancer and memorized netiquette. This is nothing but nostalgia goggles of the highest calibre, something the Eternal September post drives home perfectly. Of course the reality is that these people were always there, but net culture was such that newfriends naturally assimilated to it. The difference is that now the mainstream "net culture" people assimilate to is that of their facebook and twitter feed, and if you post on plebbit you're considered part of the seedy underbelly of the net. That's the cultural decline, not some recent infiltration of phoneposters and peoples' dads.

P.S. If you earnestly use the word "normie" you're that which you condemn.
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To be fair, 2019 was five-hundred years ago. Recreating its internet culture is difficult when most records were destroyed in the war. We’ve just been making shit up.
Look, I realize your programming has driven you to make stale jokes but it is true that this is just a "virtual reality" of sorts and eventually I'll explain it in detail for you NPCs.


(Cheesy 80s music intensifies)
Because back then, the internet was new and exciting. No one knew the possibilities of this newfound way of looking up information, playing games and communicating.

Nowadays it's more of a wonder just how much of it became either bombarded with porn, monopolized and taxed to all hell, or both.


Resident Pokemon Go expert
People who are never happy with anything and never shut up are the ones who never stop talking about how unspecial the internet is. I still appreciate being able to look up things I don't know about because I remember a time when if something wasn't in the encyclopedia you just had to take people's word for it (and we all remember how reliable that was. Hint: it wasn't.)

A close friend of mine once said one of the most prophetic things I ever heard about social media. He asked me if I was on Facebook when it was relatively new and I hadn't heard of it before. I told him no and he said "That's probably best. It's stupid."

Give Her The D

angry punk rock reject
True & Honest Fan
Social media. The screaming of blue checkmarks with their "progressive" identitarian politics ruined the fun for everything, and now everything has to be woke, driving those who value free speech into sites that the woke consider "alt-right" because they (the progressives) value censoring wrongthink over being able to say what you want without being removed from life altogether.


J'ai une âme solitaire
Age plays a big part I think. You were younger, the internet was only just beginning to get into the mainstream so everything felt new and exciting because to you it was new and exciting. It hadn't been oversaturated by normies yet, the internet was still mostly a place for geeks and people passionate about their hobbies looking to connect with others instead of trying to make a quick buck.

I actually really miss old forums from the early 2000s as well, because they were smaller communities and you really got to know the people involved, it wasn't one hodgepodge of shrieking, shit flinging monkeys like Reddit or Facebook.

The internet then was still in it's Wild West days. It hadn't been taken over by corporations and marketed and stylized for normies.

Notan Alte

feel good
True & Honest Fan
The internet used to be a place that had a sort of technological knowledge requirement to use. Before the rise of centralized monopolistic services like Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc, most normal people had no use for the internet. Files were still carried around on physical media, online streaming services were slow and low quality, and dial up sucked. Unless you had time to kill and the knowledge on how to kill it, you had no use for the internet. Nowadays we measure connection speeds in gigabits per second rather than kilobits, and services like those I mentioned earlier are stupidly easy to use. It's less special because it's no longer the nerd paradise it was, it's a shitty corporate cesspool of ads, stolen data, and sites with overly strict rules.

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