Overview of the Topic
In this we will explore the topic of racism in the imageboard and *chan culture, the atmosphere that makes this possible, and many other things related to it. It is hard to imagine how a subculture brought over from the East Asian country of Japan would have such racism and hatred. The purpose of this paper is to define what the real racism is on the imageboards and what is “ironic” or for humor purposes only. This is not a paper to condemn the *chan culture, but to make a documentation of its many facets. In this paper we will explore all of these facets in their entirety.
The roots of *chan racism are probably in Japan, a nation with a history of isolation and a strong suspicion of anything from the outside. The Japanese are a very polite people, but they are also highly racist agaist people of color and even other Asians. The racism found on Japanese 2channel and 2chan is of a humorous nature, given that there are emoticons for each nationality and group. All the stereotypes found on 2chan and 2channel are more tongue in cheek than those found on 4chan, which is the difference between Eastern and Western stereotyping and racism.
The Role of Racism in Imageboard Culture Racism plays a role in the imageboard to show that there are no holy cows, nothing that cannot be mocked, made fun of, or derided. A casual observer may think that the environment is conducive to this kind of behavior, but that is not the case entirely. The chans have two kinds of racism, one is serious hate of other races and separatism, while the other is more “LOL guys I can say nigger” type racism. It is important to distinguish between the types in order to understand why such attitudes are present in imageboards.
Anti-Semitism The internet has given a whole new breed of bigot and hater a platform, a place to spew fear and hatred of a long maligned group - the Jews. The history of the Anti-Semite is as long as the history of the Jews themselves, spanning back to story of Esther in the Hebrew Bible. In the last thousand years there have been pogroms and deportations of Jewish populations - the largest and worst of all acts against Judaism was the Nazi death camps in Germany and the rest of the Reich. The internet has become a platform for holocaust denial and other forms of anti-Semitic thought, such as conspiracy theories involving Jews and the shadowy cabal of them that runs countries such as the United States. This attitude is found strongly in the /new/ board of 4chon and some parts of 4chan, namely /x/.
Overview of 4chon 4chon is an imageboard that uses tinyboard and contains boards that were once part of 4chan. The purpose of 4chon is to allow for an enviroment of “free speech” even at the expense of minority groups and certain individuals. The site has been made famous by its /new/ board and it’s hosting of /r9k/ which was taken down and then later brought back to 4chan by moot. The site itself has a fairly large community for a site of its size and reputation. The site’s owner claims to be a free speech activist, but at one time engaged in harassment of the Yotsuba Society co-founder Jkid.
/new/ The board /new/ is a board devoted to the posting of news stories, although the board has a reputation for strong racism and anti-Semitism that even its own community recognizes. A relative newcomer would think the place to be a kind of White Supremacist playground with news stories sprinkled around for flavor. Browsing /new/ requires guts and posting on it requires a lack of human feeling or empathy, since most of the board is full of hate and threats of genocide are common. Holocaust denial is also rampant on the board, which is unsurprising given the nature of its content and fanbase.
Written by Travis “NegiSpringfield” Westphall (firstname.lastname@example.org)