rogue

"Okay, whingers, listen up." Here's why Gen Xers need to stop complaining.

Okay, whingers, listen up.

I’ve had it up to here *holds hand up to chin level*.

Now, in case you don’t understand what I just did there, the use of the asterisks is Internet-speak for “imagine me doing this action”. Asterisks also might be used for *emphasis*, or to correct a mitsake (Oops, I mean *mistake). It’s the way we hip, trendy peeps communicate online.

Hold it. If you are shaking your head right now, complaining about missing a simpler time when we all communicated face-to-face and everybody spoke the Queen’s English, then hold it right there.

YOU are the reason I am *fed up*.

ENOUGH with the nostalgia. Image via The Brady Bunch, CBS.

Nothing pisses me off more than people reminiscing about the days BC. Before Connection. If you are one of those people, and you are reading this, you are on the Internet right now. So stop your bloody whinging.

"I miss the simple times." "Nobody knows how to communicate anymore." "Life was so much easier back then."

When Thomas Edison invented the electric light bulb, did everyone push back this much? "Sigh. Life was so much easier when we had to light two hundred candles every night. I miss 1879."

Or when Penicillin was discovered? "Ugh. Everything is so complex these days. I miss gonorrhea."

Or the wheel? "Don't look at it for too long, you'll get sore eyes. Now, help me carry this wagon."

There is nothing else that people complain about more than the Internet. It's been going strong in households for twenty years now, and people are still moaning about it. I don't mean about the dangers of the web, because granted, they exist. I just mean the general bitching about its very existence, and how it has complicated everything about our lives.

These guys are NOT the enemy. Images via Getty. 

I may only be 28 (or a 'millenial' as I have been so casually and sweepingly branded), but I am vintage enough to have not had my first Internet experience until I was 8 years old (still young, but these days there are iPads for babies). The Internet was new and exciting, but not nearly the glorious beast it is today. For my primary school education, I spent more time use encyclopedias and the Encarta '97 CD-Rom than using the old dial-up Internet.

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Anyone reminiscing about that simple time, let me remind you. It was bullshit.

My school research project could only go as far as the paragraph in the Britannica, the two books in the school library, and my immediate family's existing knowledge. If I was lucky, the local library might order in an extra book for me, which would arrive in four weeks' time and invariably be a huge disappointment. That was it.

Now go and Google the word 'Jellyfish'. The top line of the results page will say something like this: "About 23,500,000 results (0.67 seconds)".

See my point?

Here is what women in the Mamamia office have been googling. It's not pretty. Post continues below...

Fifty years ago, you would have been stuck wondering 'what ever happened to Bobby Smith from third grade? I wonder where he is now?'. Your only way of knowing would have been putting a notice in the local paper, or calling every B. Smith in the phonebook. Now you can find out at the click of a keyboard that he gained two hundred kilos and works at Centrelink, without even having to have an awkward conversation. Cheers, 'net.

The Internet is not a thing to be complained about. It has its' downsides, indeed. Just ask anybody who has drunk-stalked their ex. But it has also opened up worlds for us. From one website in 1991 to over 1 billion websites today, the Internet is there, waiting patiently while we spiral down its' rabbit-holes, learning, seeing, experiencing, and discovering worlds we would never have glimpsed, all with our fingertips.

And if you don't buy that spiel, feel free to comment below and we can debate. Or shoot me an e-mail and I'll respond within a few minutes. WAIT. Sorry. Do it your way, web-free. Look me up in the phonebook. Oh no, I'm unlisted. Write me a letter? You don't know my address. Hmmm. Maybe put an ad in the local paper, and cross your fingers I'll see it...

*Good luck, buddy*.

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