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View Poll Results: Memes? Good? Bad?
Memes is good, 0-20 121 40.60%
Memes is good, 21-30 66 22.15%
Memes is good, 31-40 17 5.70%
Memes is good, 41+ 23 7.72%
Meme are bad, 0-20 22 7.38%
Meme are bad, 21-30 28 9.40%
Meme are bad, 31-40 11 3.69%
Meme are bad, 41+ 10 3.36%
Voters: 298. You may not vote on this poll

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Unread 10-17-2018, 03:32 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Memes serve an important purpose as a large part of modern communication, but in all honesty, FRC memes are almost always bad. If I have to see another one of these:
  • haha don't eat power cubes
  • oh no, 254 was mildly inconvenienced in some way, press F to pay respects
  • incidental reference to some liquid = water game in foreseeable future
  • robot falls over at offseason event
  • Woodie/Dean in a mildly amusing situation

I'm going to lose my mind.

I 100% believe that memes can have a positive influence, but when the most publicly visible forms of social media used by FRC participants (the FRC subreddit is one of the biggest culprits here) are full of nonsense jokes about a water game, it paints a bad picture of the program.
Memes are great, as long as they are reasonably constructive.
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Unread 10-17-2018, 03:33 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Originally Posted by Andrew Schreiber View Post
Literally just sent one... like 5 minutes ago to my PL about a feature. My department head has sent multiple... And I work at a stodgy old company.
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Unread 10-17-2018, 03:42 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Unread 10-17-2018, 04:40 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Is this meme?
https://www.chiefdelphi.com/media/photos/36127
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Unread 10-17-2018, 04:47 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

I think a big source of disagreement in discussions like these is whether or not ChiefDelphi, as a form of communication within a community, is closer to email or a platform like Slack and Discord. 



Because, while I would also hesitate to send an email to my coworkers with gifs or memes, my work Slack is full of them (you should see all of our custom emoji too). And I would argue that ChiefDelphi is as close to Slack as it is to email.

Personally as someone who works remotely and interacts with my coworkers exclusively via the internet (I work for an online publication) I think a place like CD, which has a mix of people already in a professional environment and those who will hopefully soon find themselves in one, has a great opportunity to help both groups learn about and effectively use all forms of online expression that they might soon have in their own workplace.



Because sometimes yeah, gifs or memes can be annoying and out of place and are just signaling an immediate surface level agreement or disagreement, but they can also be a tool to effectively summarize an idea in a way that lends emphasis to your point.

 (To see a good example of this in action check out the YouTube series IdeaChannel.)

I think banning or discouraging the use of a particular type of communication would be to miss an opportunity to create community standards that focus on when and how to best use them to communicate effectivly. Whether you’re trying to properly explain a design concept, or you just want to blow off some steam debating which off-season is best. 



To answer OPs question: Do I think memes are good or bad…


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Unread 10-17-2018, 10:38 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil' Lavery View Post
Chief Delphi no longer has a monopoly on FRC discussion like it did 10-15 years ago. There's Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, Discord, etc. now.
Outside of Discord I would say Chief Delphi is the only other place to discuss FRC. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc are mainly for team updates to the public, not very conductive to any real form of back and forth FRC discussion. The FRC Reddit is all memes all the time, I only visit once every few months as it is the least useful subreddit I have looked at.

Discord has its place. It is a better platform for getting questions answered quickly, having real time debates, and general discussion of matches/events/current topics. It skews young because of it being both "new" and not conductive to delayed replies (in an active channel a topic can get buried 50 messages deep in less than a day, with no page sorting like CD). I am an old fogey there because my age doesn't start with a 1 or 2.



On the original post, I think occasional memes are fine, but they were being used to excess by a few (there was a website dedicated to the memeingness of OP...). In a similar manner the occasional swear word in a professional setting can give impact or emphasis to something, but doing it frequently makes no one take you seriously and can frustrate those around you.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 08:13 AM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donut View Post
On the original post, I think occasional memes are fine, but they were being used to excess by a few (there was a website dedicated to the memeingness of OP...). In a similar manner the occasional swear word in a professional setting can give impact or emphasis to something, but doing it frequently makes no one take you seriously and can frustrate those around you.
What if professionally you're a comedian or entertainer? Isn't humor, snark, sarcasm, and witticism part of your job then? Is it still bad to use it on ChiefDelphi in that case? I'm asking because I'm considering a change in career...
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Unread 10-18-2018, 08:16 AM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by marshall View Post
What if professionally you're a comedian or entertainer? Isn't humor, snark, sarcasm, and witticism part of your job then? Is it still bad to use it on ChiefDelphi in that case? I'm asking because I'm considering a change in career...
Everyone laughed when Marshall said he wanted to be a comedian. No one's laughing now.

For those interested here are the results to the poll, I'll update the sheet as more people vote.

Things I learned:
  • I'm in the old person group, the vast majority of CD users are 30 or under.
  • As I suspected more people in the 20 and under group said good than said bad. The ratio then tapers off closer to even as the user gets older.
  • The student (20 and under, I know I should have set it to 18 instead of 20) to mentor ratio on CD is much closer than I thought it would be.
  • I like pie, and this made me hungry

Last edited by notmattlythgoe : 10-18-2018 at 08:22 AM.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 09:36 AM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by notmattlythgoe View Post
The student (20 and under, I know I should have set it to 18 instead of 20) to mentor ratio on CD is much closer than I thought it would be.
This was the most interesting part for me, as I've always had the impression that the majority of CD users are adults. Does anyone want to do a breakdown of the number of posts (in the past week? Month?) whose poster is 0-18, 18-30, 30+ or something? I believe ages are available on CD profiles. I suspect that, while the ratio of students to mentors might be close to 50-50, mentors are doing a lot more of the posting.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 12:46 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donut View Post
Outside of Discord I would say Chief Delphi is the only other place to discuss FRC. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc are mainly for team updates to the public, not very conductive to any real form of back and forth FRC discussion. The FRC Reddit is all memes all the time, I only visit once every few months as it is the least useful subreddit I have looked at.

Discord has its place. It is a better platform for getting questions answered quickly, having real time debates, and general discussion of matches/events/current topics. It skews young because of it being both "new" and not conductive to delayed replies (in an active channel a topic can get buried 50 messages deep in less than a day, with no page sorting like CD). I am an old fogey there because my age doesn't start with a 1 or 2.
This is basically my point. Each platform has their own characteristics, strengths, and best uses. Back in the day, Chief Delphi was the centralized hub for everything. CD was the primary online medium for team reveals, not YouTube, twitter, and FUN. CD Chit-Chat and AOL IM were the places for off-topic discussion with other FIRSTers, not Facebook, Snapchat, and Discord. CD was center of the FIRST universe. Now it's much more democratized and spread out among various platforms.

Reddit handles the memes. Twitter and Instagram handle team PR. YouTube handles the videos. Facebook is a meld of team PR and some discussion. Discord is a bit of everything, and in many ways is a replacement for the old AIM chatrooms. Chief Delphi's strength is serious text discussion. That's what forums are good at, particularly when compared to other forms of social media.

As an aside, I'm not particularly fond of Discord for serious conversation. The issues with lack of permanence and threading making it hard to have back-and-forth discussions that don't devolve into noise. It's great for chatting and quick help, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pkrishna3082 View Post
This was the most interesting part for me, as I've always had the impression that the majority of CD users are adults. Does anyone want to do a breakdown of the number of posts (in the past week? Month?) whose poster is 0-18, 18-30, 30+ or something? I believe ages are available on CD profiles. I suspect that, while the ratio of students to mentors might be close to 50-50, mentors are doing a lot more of the posting.
This is another factor that often gets glossed over. I'd be inclined to agree that the bulk of posts come from adults, but not all users are active posters. There's segments of guests, lurkers, and infrequent posters who are part of the Chief Delphi community as well.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 02:12 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Originally Posted by Lil' Lavery View Post
Reddit handles the memes. Twitter and Instagram handle team PR. YouTube handles the videos. Facebook is a meld of team PR and some discussion. Discord is a bit of everything, and in many ways is a replacement for the old AIM chatrooms. Chief Delphi's strength is serious text discussion. That's what forums are good at, particularly when compared to other forms of social media.
Have you ever been on the internet? At least the same internet that I've been on? I must be plugged into the wrong port on my modem, should I switch to port 2?
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Unread 10-18-2018, 02:19 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Have you ever been on the internet? At least the same internet that I've been on? I must be plugged into the wrong port on my modem, should I switch to port 2?
We can be better than the internet as a whole. Heck, back in the mid-2000s Chief Dephi was "attacked" by another forum for exactly that. They saw us as too good natured, so they decided to flood CD with spam posts and fake accounts. I see no reason why we should stoop to the levels of lesser parts of the internet.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 02:36 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Originally Posted by Madison View Post
People who rely on memes to communicate their feelings and opinions are doing a disservice to themselves and to the people around them.

The most important skill we have is our ability to communicate. Nuance and depth is an asset, not a liability, and our words and our actions are the things that connect us with one another. When we rely on the words of someone else -- literally or metaphorically -- we're telling the people around us that we don't have anything interesting to say or anything useful to contribute.
I don't post very often any longer, but I love language and wanted to chime in here. We don't always agree, Madison, but I think we both communicate on the same level. I'd like to both politely agree AND disagree.

After studying the nature of meaningful discourse and the evolution of language as a primary focus for my degree, I agree particularly with your second and third sentence, but not so much with the rest. As the old lady of my particular workgroup, I've found that the tendency to communicate in memes is actually usually more subtle and full of subtext than is immediately obvious. The younger engineers and team members in our group have taught me plenty in the last five years.

Take, for instance, one of my favorites:



I have no idea how to SAY that. Well, I do. But not concisely, and not without potentially not-quite-nailing the exact thing I want to say (if my vocabulary is only so-so, or English isn't my first language and I don't necessarily understand some of those nuances of which you speak). It's the same as glancing across the room to your friend and giving an eyeroll in response to something said, right? Long before written communication, nonverbal said plenty. Communication, in any written form, is only enhanced with non-verbal communication. Hence Scott Fahlman's creation of the ": )" symbol in the first place. How to you properly convey sarcasm? Each language has their own phrases, hand gestures, etc. that all have those nuances implied. As a stickler for written English, I've realized that you just pick those up as you go. Younger students, ESL students, etc. don't necessarily have that fully developed. Enter memes.

Think about the first time you remember doing something wrong in public, and the look your parents gave you to keep you in line.



You knew what that meant. You knew to curb your behavior without saying a word. And memes have started to take that function - conveying a look, or a glance, in those ways. You probably reacted like this:



Not all are intelligent, or even funny. Some are destructive or harrassing, and those in particular I'd love to strike from the face of this planet. But I see the meme culture developing like all other language among teenagers. I've decided I'm better off getting on board, as language and communication come in all forms. Most people with kids, or who mentor kids, or have any interaction with kids know that kids are unpredictable and sometimes not as verbal as we'd like them to be. So I try to read into the meaning of the meme, even if it's posting absolute crap. It's no different than the crap posting that's text-based, either.

(As an aside, my favorite game to play with the students on FRC 1296 was to mix slang words or popular terms in the most awkward way possible. Nothing makes a student cringe quite like yelling "Is this lit? Are we lit right now?" when getting picked for the finals, or misusing "hella", or whatever else I could throw in. Weird sense of humor, I know.)

What does that mean for an online text-based bulletin board like CD? Who knows, long-term. Not sure it takes away that much and the reactions to it can be downright curmudgeonly. But hey, all change takes time. Maybe this is fad, but maybe, it isn't. So I guess I'm all aboard the meme train. Even the stupid ones. Like this (language warning).

But a great counterpoint is Neil Postman's Amusing Ourselves to Death, which (and I'm really, really generalizing here) argues that we're all slowly getting, well, stupider as a result of television and other inputs that are intentionally less intelligent to appeal to the masses. I'd argue for most of the points in his book and I've referenced it many, many times over the years. Memespeak isn't really the most nuanced or most intelligent of discourse, but it's not meant to be. It's but one in a long line of communication methods in which we are maybe communicating but somewhat dumbing ourselves down. Why pick on this one in particular? Because it'll replace that intelligent conversational language such as what I've posted here, between the memes? Students aren't coming to Chief Delphi for language lessons. I guess to me it's not a sign of anything other than "kids will be kids", and I'm willing to roll with it even when I don't understand it.

tl;dr: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Last edited by Amanda Morrison : 10-18-2018 at 02:45 PM. Reason: CD took away my emojis. :(
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Unread 10-18-2018, 02:44 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

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Originally Posted by Amanda Morrison View Post
(As an aside, my favorite game to play with the students on FRC 1296 was to mix slang words or popular terms in the most awkward way possible. Nothing makes a student cringe quite like yelling "Is this lit? Are we lit right now?" when getting picked for the finals, or misusing "hella", or whatever else I could throw in. Weird sense of humor, I know.)
I had this realization as I got older. I realized my parents were calling all of my video game systems "Sega" and calling it "Pokemans" on purpose, because it frustrated me and it was amusing for them. And now that I do it to kids I have to admit, it's very amusing.
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Unread 10-18-2018, 02:51 PM
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Re: Are we out of touch? Is memes bad? Are meme good?

I'm not quite sure how this discussion has gone on so long across a number of different threads given the overwhelming response of "it depends" I'm seeing. It seems like forcing people to fall on one side of the line or the other on "are memes good or bad?" is not getting to the key issue here.
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