29 March 2009

Down with Orwellian Public Service Announcements

One of the things you really tend to miss when you are in an overseas location are actual commercials. The Armed Forces Network fills its "commercial" time with nothing but military-related public service announcements. You'll see everything from "wear a helmet when you ride a motorcycle", to "be sure to have a power of attorney", and whatnot. Sometimes you get an interesting fact on what the meaning is behind some phrase or custom.

But when you sit back and watch it, you probably can't help but think of a 1984-like scenario in which you hear nothing but public service announcements which tell you that Big Brother is good for you. In fact, a number of the PSAs are downright laughable, like when you're told "don't spread rumors, it's bad for morale". Yeah, I'm certain that will put a dent in the rumor mill.

Today, I encountered a laughable PSA from the Armed Forces Network, in which Scruff McGruff discussed what to do when you have an "Internet bully". I personally like to taunt them incessantly, log their IP and publish a map to their house on Google Earth, psychoanalyze them (they're always compensating for something), photoshop them into compromising situations--the list is endless. I even went so far as to write a story about a whole bunch of Internet trolls in which they were a bunch of pirates who were attacked by a giant squid (who was actually a fat internet troll), by a massive carrier (manned by more internet trolls), and were finally killed by Navy SEALS (those of us who hate Internet trolls). Classic.

Well, Scruff McGruff recommended an approach pioneered by Maddox, of The Best Page in the Universe. McGruff, much like Maddox, suggests that one just delete traffic from an Internet troll. However, Maddox recommends doing it to the vitriolic hate mail that he receives, since there's nothing more satisfying than looking at a long, emotional response--one that a troll poured out his soul into--and not even reading it, just simply hitting delete. That's how you deal with Internet trolls.

(Oh by the way, if you get upset at an Internet troll and find out that he's in the military, don't go telling the chain of command. Seriously, it's the Internet and everyone has a right to act like a jackass. I'll never forget one of my most memorable phone calls, in which some offended lady from an Internet forum wanted to know if someone in my company was "IllSteve69". )

1 comment:

SunJun said...

One has to wonder though, are these Orwellian Public Service announcements worse than the hyper aggressive commercials spewed upon the American public at far more frequent intervals? I would rather sit through rather comical messages about helmet safety and the random historical facts than get pounded by obnoxious ads to BUY! BUY! BUY!

This coming from the equivalent of years of exposure to American Forces Korean Network (AFKN).