Cringe Culture

Meaning

What does Cringe Culture mean?

Cringe Culture refers to the online practice of booing fanart and bullying creators online, while retaining one’s relative anonymity as well as receiving gratification for preying on those who tend to be weaker and more vulnerable.

It is a particularly cruel aspect of the online social environment as it is often targeting posts created by children, the LGBT community, people with mental illnesses, disabilities, and other forms of physical or mental vulnerabilities.

It is a problem that has been increasing as access to the internet has become more accessible and widespread. The anonymity of such online practices, in combination with its targeting of those who are more vulnerable, can be especially psychologically damaging to those affected..

The most cringeworthy thing about cringe culture is the stuff they consider to be cringe

Origin

What's the origin of Cringe Culture?

The whole “Cringe Culture” movement, a phenomenon of mocking posts and videos of social awkwardness or embarrassment in a comedic fashion, evolved from the r/cringe section of Reddit, which was established in September 10th, 2009.

This was preceded by the increasingly intolerant and hostile atmosphere, one encountered on 4chan prior to 2009. While the open-ended subreddit was supposed to be filled with empathy toward people, who were the subjects of posts, it certainly didn’t go as planned, with the subreddit turning into a haven for those wanting to bully and shame others.

“Cringe Culture” has since broadened from the cringe subreddit, spreading across different media platforms, platforms such as YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram, to name a few. This has made cringey content wide-spread and available to anybody looking for a laugh at the expense of other people.

Spread & Usage

How did Cringe Culture spread?

“Cringe Culture” had spread even further on the web in recent years, from the earliest YouTube cringe compilations, to newer social media platforms such as Instagram creating “flop” pages, which post all sorts of offensive, objectionable and sometimes otherwise controversial content with the primary intention of inviting heavy mockery.

This phenomenon has been further popularised by Urban Dictionary, wherein early 2018 definitions surfaced, as conversations around “Cringe Culture” became more serious topics of discussion, in response to the often polarizing debate stemming from the modern “Safe Space” movement and others of the same vein.

External resources

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