Max Read at Valleywag reports that Encyclopedia Dramatica is no more:
Unofficial 4chan wiki Encyclopedia Dramatica, the user-authored repository of memes, racism and homophobia, is no more. It’s been replaced by OhInternet, a much cleaner site with much less offensive content. We asked its founder: Is ED preparing to sell out?
Until this past Thursday, Encyclopedia Dramatica, or ED, was (in the words of Gawker’s Adrian Chen, himself an ED subject) “one of the last bastions of Internet nastiness.” Founded in 2005 by a
kidwoman named Sherrod DeGrippo, the site exhaustively catalogued thousands of memes, in jokes, characters and concepts from the internet’s adolescent underbelly; unsurprisingly—since it was written and edited by the same 4channers and Anonymous hangers-on who created those memes—it reveled in homophobia, racism and misogyny, not to mention dozens of really gross pictures. The wanton bigotry made it a frequent subject of attack, and earlier this year, when tech issues briefly took the site offline, rumors flew that ED had finally been shut down for good.
But those were just rumors. This time, DeGrippo has confirmed that ED is gone for good, and has been replaced by OhInternet—a sanitized version of ED’s free-for-all meme wiki, accompanied by a frequently-updated blog. (Coming soon: Forums and an IRC channel.) “Shock for shock’s sake is old at this point and we’re looking forward to the future and how things are evolving,” DeGrippo told Geekosystem. “When you put user experience first, the language becomes highly important and that’s what we’ve done.”…
Reaction to the shift has been, needless to say, ! ! ! dramatic ! ! !. Per Geekosystem (read the comments over there, for full flavor):
The site does have its work cut out for it in winning over Dramatica fans, though. Last night, as regular Encyclopedia Dramatica visitors were discovering the redirect, Oh Internet’s Facebook wall was bombarded with hate messages, graphic pornography, and the like, though the page has been scrubbed as of this morning. And as much as there may have been to loathe about Dramatica, an Internet without it is by definition a more homogeneous one…
I won’t miss the spyware or the OCD lowest-common-denominator witless repetition, but as someone whose people have always believed that a grudge properly cherished is a cultural treasure, I may actually miss the old, untamed ED. I also find it amusing that while its most prolific contributors were undoubtably adolescent boys of all ages, the person who actually did the work of starting and cataloging and running the whole mishegaus was one of us Vagina-Americans:
“There had previously been no upgrades, no redesigns and no changes in seven years. Sites that don’t change, become irrelevant. There are tons of examples. I would like to discuss them with [Gawker founder] Nick Denton. We will sit back and talk about those inscrutable users and their dislike for redesigns….
The site was created to house information on livejournal users. I have never been a part of anonymous, I have never been a chan user. This is some weird cognizant dissonance that people are seemingly unable to accept. The site was started because I wanted to house some information from livejournal and some drama about hackers Theo DeRaadt and Darren Reed. They are my OTP.”
(I had to look up that last acronym — on Urban Dictionary, since my Firefox says OhInternet is not available at the moment. I’m such an Old, when I was writing fanfic, the definition of ‘slash’ was still an open question.)