Ever since Twitter’s been blowing up on the internet I’ve been noticing that the average attention span of the viewing public is becoming shorter and shorter. Less than 140 characters or else they’re moving onto the next page.
The old adage, “quality over quantity” has been replaced with “lack of quantity over quality”. After all, what do you have to lose reading a twitter message besides a couple of seconds? Who cares if it’s bad?
Many instant gratification blogs and web sites have existed for a few years or so (eg., I Can Has Cheezburger, Home of the LOL Cat, or Group Hug which has been around since before Facebook and YouTube) with varying levels of success, but it’s no secret that a lot more of them are starting up, and some are actually quite good.
Most have a common characteristic of anonymous people posting along a theme, where others can vote on whether it’s worthy of your consumption or not.
Ruminations.com is my most recent find. The site encourages people to “Write what your thinking”. Sample ruminations include:
I don’t understand the purpose of the line, “I don’t need to drink to have fun.” Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they’ve invented the lighter?
– Posted By Ludabers
Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you’re going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you’re crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.
– Posted By MaVieEnRose
Ruminations is brought to you by some dude named Aaron Karo, who seems to want to promote himself as much as possible through the blog. I recommend NOT reading any of his posts, as he seems like a supreme douche along the lines of Max Tucker. It’s not my favourite site, but the layout and content so far is pretty good.
F My Life had quite the media hype behind it earlier this year. It debuted in late 2008 and started out with some great posts. Users anonymously post a shameful story about themselves starting off with “Today, …” and ending with “… FML”:
Today, I forgot to do my French homework, but since it was an online worksheet, I told my teacher my internet wasn’t working. I told her with an e-mail. FML
– Posted by ihavepinkbackpac
Today, I saw an elderly man fall in a crosswalk, so I jumped off my bike to help. As I helped him across, the light turned green. At that point I noticed my phone had fallen out of my pocket in the street and was run over by several cars. I then watched across a 6 lane street as someone stole my bike. FML
– Posted by Mick
I still frequent F My Life every now and then, but the quality has significantly dropped since it became popular. Even though they have moderators that are supposed to weed out the bad stories, it’s quite obvious that the majority of the stories are fake or from 12 year olds.
Today, the boy I have crush on at school announced that his family were moving to Australia. My friend thought that it would be funny to spread a rumour that I was moving too, in order to follow him. Everyone has heard it, and unfortunately everyone believes it, including him. FML
– Posted by Some little girl
The crème de la crème of instant gratification sites in my opinion. I hit this site at least 4 times a day hoping for updates. The original premise of the site was to get people to send in their texts from the night before that they may wish they would have not sent, but it has evolved into a general text submission site.
There is pure comedy gold coming from this thing. Admittedly, a lot of the posts are college themed, but I’m a lot more close to relating to that then the Twilight crowd that has been submitting to F My Life.
(407): i went to disney world today with my friends, met snow white, then saw her later at a bar. she is naked next to me in her bed, passwed out. when you wish upon a star…
(774): i just walked into a room at this party and someone yelled “dibs!”…
(212): i want you now
(916): you need to stop dating girls with the same name as your mother…or stop drinking so much…I don’t want to see this
The three numbers in parenthesis at the beginning are the only clue to where the texts originate from, via the phone’s area code.
Some of the stuff on here is just priceless and is exactly what a quick site should be. Great rating system, users can comment, and the quality of the posts has stayed consistent.
My next two selections are image based. They say a picture is worth a thousand works, but you know what? I don’t have time to read a thousand words, so bring on the pictures! Like F My Life, People From Walmart grew popular VERY quickly. To the point where I was seeing it being referenced in local news papers and Seattle t.v. news segments.
The site is extremely basic, but brilliant. People capture photos of odd looking patrons of Walmarts all across the country. Walmart already has a reputation for attracting all sorts of weirdos, but it’s nice to see visual evidence.
Part of me feels bad for laughing at these people, but then I see a picture of someone in full Betty Boop pajamas and realize that if they aren’t going to make the effort, then they somewhat deserve it.
People of Walmart captures people that for some reason or another just don’t fit into accepted society. Usually it’s because they don’t care, or just don’t get it. Look At This Fucking Hipster (LATFH) chooses to highlight the irreverent idiots that try their hardest to stick out on purpose.
Build with the template blog site Tumblr, LATFH features skinny white boys wearing ironic gold chains and retro mustaches. Chubby girls with neon sunglasses, and various outfits from American Apparel. Young kids who crave attention, and are achieving it through their clothes.
I do NOT feel bad about laughing at these goons, because if they don’t have the self-awareness now to realize that they look like idiots, they will in 20 years when they’re in the safe white-collar jobs reminiscing. Assuming of course that their coke habit doesn’t kill them first.
The popularity and simplicity of LATFH even spawned it’s own family friendly spin-off, Look at this Lovely Hamster. Aw, cute.