End Of An Era, Long Live RT, Yada Yada…


This is overdue, but I am posting about it, anyways. Months ago, Rotten Tomatoes decided, just like IMDB.com did, to kill off their message boards. However unlike IMDB, RT decided not to warn the users, and closed the boards for good, making it impossible for users to recover anything they wanted to save. I keep forgetting to make backups of certain things I want to save or preserve, and every time I regret doing so. This is not why I am angry, though-no, I am upset that after years of giving the site eyeball traffic along with others, RT decided to can a feature that is responsible for them existing in the first place. Too bad, since I think the forums were experiencing sort of a resurgence, and people still posted there, although I will admit things were never the same after 2011 or 2012, I guess. Maybe it was time. I have been a member of numerous sites, and I always departed before they went under, although there were a few that I hung around at long after someone turned off the lights. No apology has been posted, and I feel worse for the user mods, several of whom I am friends with on Facebook. They should have at least received something for their troubles, or some kind of heads up, but the RT higher ups, probably embarrassed by some high profile incidents (thanks insane DC fanboys for making things worse, not better-and yes I blame you, too) that occurred on the site, although those were not related to the actual forums themselves, decided to call it quits. There were some good jokes made in OT that the forums were the dark side of the site, chained up in the basement, hidden from view, which was not wrong considering that RT made it hard to find the forum link around 2008, or 2009.

Goodbye, RT OT. The political and sports talk were always fun, and I have good memories of posting during election time, when things were at their most heated and active. Goodbye, both RT chats, although the OT one was held off site and is still around, while GD’s was at its height when Yahoo hosted it until late 2007, or 2008-I do not recall. I managed to get booted from the OT one a bunch of times, for various reasons or another, heh. The Yahoo one had live cams, which was really cool, and ended up pulling users from different groups. Farewell, GD: Oscar season when Crash won is one of the site’s highlights, a real moment in time. I still have not seen that movie, and I probably never will. All of the neat thread groups departed to different sites, all which I post on, and maybe this is just another downside to the Internet: the fragmenting of people, divided up into sections and groups. There are different streaming services, different social media (Facebook and Twitter have literally killed the message boards, for better, or for worse), multiple entertainment options. A lot of memories, all gone forever, lost in time, quote that overused classic Blade Runner line, or the Children of Men one about the last one left turning out the light,  auf wiedersehen even though I will never seen the site again.

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I wish I could be really petty, yet I still follow RT on their twitter feed, mostly to lob meaningless “Bring back the forums” posts at them, a David throwing Internet stones at a Goliath that never cared in the first place. 20,000 some posts, well almost 21k, never to be recovered, along with everything else. Perhaps that is for the best, and there have been jokes about how now that RT’s forums are gone (the site still lives, of course, not that I care too much) they can run for office now, although I doubt anyone worried about that sort of thing. Thus ends a journey that began in 2003, and I imagine that my old posts were really awful, so hooray for them no longer existing, although knowing the Internet nothing is ever really gone, a fact that Donald Trump and others keep forgetting. On to the next phase, whatever that is; I myself hope for virtual reality, or space travel. Both would be nice. MadMan_731/MadMan (the site let me drop the numbers later on)/MadMan_7 and TheOmegaMan71 (aliases), signing out, for good.

A Most Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy


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No I’m not talking about Washington D.C., although that place certainly qualifies. I’m referring to the comments section of any and all Internet news and opinion articles. If you are wondering about Donald Trump followers, terrible people and those who lack the ability to spell or use proper grammar, well look no further then a place that is now part of the Internet. I can’t recall when this became a feature, although I imagine this is as old as message boards.

What’s even worse is the opinions people post. On any given day you can read racist, sexist, homophobic and degrading posts that make one feel the need to take a shower. It’s sad that discourse has rapidly degraded to a level that you have to wonder if these people’s mothers would be ashamed to find out their children do not have any filters. Maybe they were raised that way, a prospect that sounds depressing and unfortunately not too surprising.

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Also the use of insults  (something even I’ve been guilty of) is commonplace on both sides of the political aisle. Many try to assert that it is Republicans largely to blame and yet many Democrats are also guilty of poor behavior. Is there a solution beyond simply avoiding the comments section?

Well encouraging people to behave and hoping for moderators to ban the misbehaving users is maybe the best we can hope for. Acting civily is a good idea, too. Or just skip the comments altogether. I’ll admit they are like a car crash: I can’t look away even though I should.

Social Media Killed The Message Board


Today I tried to access Rotten Tomatoes’ message boards. Well every attempt was met with one of those lame errors that you get when the site has gone to shit, only the main page is fine. What we have here is RT’s overlords trying to kill off the forums even though without the forums RT doesn’t even exist the way it does today. The users are what made it profitable enough for it to be bought up by IGN back in 2006, and they’ve made the site tick. Only during the past two-three years RT has been pretending the forums are hardly even on the site, hiding the forums and making it harder for new users to register. They also got rid of the journals, a feature that was actually decent and enabled users to communicate with one another because they were clearly too much of a good idea.

You now have mod approval for certain posts, gateway timeouts, and any other bugs that may pop up. RT’s new goal is to turn itself into a social media connected website, and while I cannot blame them for doing so its still terrible. They are lying to their users, or at least not being forthcoming with them, and I happen to be a long time poster there (10 years this month, in fact). That’s utterly ridiculous, not to mention anger inducing, and while I can see someone telling me not to bitch about a free message board I still think I’m inclined to. How would you like it if Facebook started charging its members, or if Twitter decided to phase out certain features or change things without even telling you? You would be angry, right, and those services are free.

I guess that the song “Video Killed The Radio Star” can indeed be amended to “Social Media Killed The Message Board.” Oh sure many other boards will continue on, but RT was the biggest and brightest of them at one point. Its really sad that a place I’ve spent countless hours on is going the way of the dinosaur, however perhaps its time to move on. I’ll admit that I kind of have, as I use Twitter a lot, blog almost every other day, and I have a Facebook account. Man does change sometimes have its casualties, one way or another.

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