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There is a Specter Haunting the Internet, the Specter of Euphoria.

While the word "gamer" has a lot of baggage these days, I will admit that I play a lot of video games, especially online video games. I can't even recall off the top of my head everything I've committed to or at least dabbled in, in the last few years, so I'll mention a few relevant to a rather weird phenomenon that is the subject of this story:
Star Trek Online (became a lifetime subscriber well before it went free to play. Especially during "weekly" story updates that were not so weekly, was a blast for a while. High point was probably Legacy of Romulus).
Planetside 2 (This one spoiled me: I just can't get into tiny-ass repeating maps with rigid 6v6 or 12v12 or 20v20 fights anymore so I'm stuck with this one when it comes to shooters)
Old Republic (worth playing through at least a few times for the class stories).
World of Warcraft (played for years, increasingly disappointed after Lich King, quit during Draenor, Legion not interesting me).
These are not the only things I've played recently, but what do they all have in common?
The Specter of Euphoria.
Each of them (yes, even Planetside 2) have had a weird thing happen in a commonly-shared chatroom. Be it Earth Spacedock, Vaiken Fleet Station, or Stormwind Trade Channel, a specter haunted them all, at roughly the same time, and at the time, I had no idea why they sounded alike.
This was primarily in Star Trek Online, so I'll derive the "conversation" from there, which was more like a guy standing on a street corner, waving an "THE END IS NIGH" sign, but with some specific differences, such as the wrath of God not being what to fear, but the wrath of, uh, well, the guy holding the sign.
I'll call the guy King Skynet, because it's a fine mishmash of his dreams and ideals and where he sees himself: ruling the world, but instead of a mountain of treasure around his Hyborean throne, there'd be Bitcoin. Somehow. He was already well into his prophecies, and according to someone I asked, was there for several hours already.
King Skynet: lol u laugh now, but all of u are replacable. u all will b replaced.
I had the overwhelming urge to chime in.
AngryDM: Replaced? In a video game? Are you referring to farmer bots and aimbots? We already have those.
King Skynet: players.... game devving.... all of u... replaced....
AngryDM: Okay. Who will buy the games?
King Skynet: the economy will be self aware.... u ever read Accelerando?
I had to look that up. Sounded like a cautionary tale in summary, or failing that, a speculative "this is what happens with runaway AI" as a thing to dread, not celebrate.
AngryDM: Okay. What's in it for you?
King Skynet: lol.... who do u think will b in charge?
AngryDM: Let me guess, you?
King Skynet: good guess....
This exchange went on for a while, a dreadful long while. It went on, also, in other games in a short span. I dare wonder if it was the same person lurking at the NC warpgate, in Vaiken Spacedock, in Stormwind. I'm not sure what'd be better: if it was the same guy or if it was him and his buddies, because this Specter of Euphoria haunted my corners of the online world for roughly a week like this.
Summary of the Specter's spooky prophecies: Very very soon, the world would be consumed by an uncaring AI with nothing else in mind but growth and self-perpetuation. People would be obsolete, except of course the wise Dilbert-like software engineers that were the true powers behind the throne.
Very soon after, because hockey-stick-shaped-curves are magic, the solar system would be reduced to base components and repurposed into tech toys.
Pretty soon after that, because hockey-stick-shaped-curves, the galaxy.
Pretty soon after that, the universe. Everything bulldozed, processed down.
Back to Earth Spacedock, here. "Okay. So everything in the universe is made into stuff, right?"
King Skynet: Things u cant even dream of....
AngryDM: What then?
King Skynet: I dunno, lol! prob kill myself when im bored.
There you have it: a brave new world. For months, almost a year, the specter was intangible, mysterious, with no clear connections I could find. This stuff simply HAD to come from somewhere, so I asked around, and one helpful soul linked me to this. Behold, the motherlode, the source of every fedora, neckbeard, trenchcoat, and set of fingerless gloves on the internet:
Behold, the Manifesto of the Dark Enlightenment!
"F. T. Marinetti posted:
1. We want to sing the love of danger, the habit of energy and rashness. 2. The essential elements of our poetry will be courage, audacity and revolt. 3. Literature has up to now magnified pensive immobility, ecstasy and slumber. We want to exalt movements of aggression, feverish sleeplessness, the double march, the perilous leap, the slap and the blow with the fist. 4. We declare that the splendor of the world has been enriched by a new beauty: the beauty of speed. A racing automobile with its bonnet adorned with great tubes like serpents with explosive breath ... a roaring motor car which seems to run on machine-gun fire, is more beautiful than the Victory of Samothrace. 5. We want to sing the man at the wheel, the ideal axis of which crosses the earth, itself hurled along its orbit. 6. The poet must spend himself with warmth, glamour and prodigality to increase the enthusiastic fervor of the primordial elements. 7. Beauty exists only in struggle. There is no masterpiece that has not an aggressive character. Poetry must be a violent assault on the forces of the unknown, to force them to bow before man. 8. We are on the extreme promontory of the centuries! What is the use of looking behind at the moment when we must open the mysterious shutters of the impossible? Time and Space died yesterday. We are already living in the absolute, since we have already created eternal, omnipresent speed. 9. We want to glorify war — the only hygiene of the world — militarism, patriotism, the destructive gesture of the anarchists, the beautiful ideas which kill, and contempt for woman. 10. We want to demolish museums and libraries, fight morality, feminism and all opportunist and utilitarian cowardice. 11. We will sing of the great crowds agitated by work, pleasure and revolt; the multi-colored and polyphonic surf of revolutions in modern capitals: the nocturnal vibration of the arsenals and the workshops beneath their violent electric moons: the gluttonous railway stations devouring smoking serpents; factories suspended from the clouds by the thread of their smoke; bridges with the leap of gymnasts flung across the diabolic cutlery of sunny rivers: adventurous steamers sniffing the horizon; great-breasted locomotives, puffing on the rails like enormous steel horses with long tubes for bridle, and the gliding flight of aeroplanes whose propeller sounds like the flapping of a flag and the applause of enthusiastic crowds. " 
These guys are legends, at least in their own minds. They are at the crossroads between the many roads of being enlightened by one's own intelligence. Was this just a single very ambitious soul spending a week spreading the good news of the tech singularity and how it'll make everyone fear him, or did "Mencius Moldbug", Nick Land, F. T. Marinetti and the rest of the shadow basement council all decide to get Steam accounts at the same time?
EDIT: Oops. Seems like F. T. Marinetti was a century-ago prototype of the "Dark Enlightenment". Doesn't change much of what I said except to say "horrible people obsessed with technology-based power fantasies also existed before the Internet".
submitted by AngryDM to neckbeardstories [link] [comments]

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