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4chan Genesis

Antonizoon edited this page Jan 31, 2015 · 1 revision
<moot> regging
<moot> FOUR CHAN
<moot> brace for faggotry

4chan is founded in October 1, 2003 by moot, a 15 years old user of the DC++ hub Raspberry Heaven and Something Awful’s ADTRW forum, as an English-language version of 2chan, Futaba Channel. Moot copies the 2chan's source code, Futaba, and manages to translate it. The site introduces a simple and free method of communication that Something Awful users have always dreamed of. It soon becomes wildly popular as a new home for banned ADTRW refugees and #RaspberryHeaven goons, who in turn spread word across the Internet. 4chan links quickly replace Futaba Channel and world2ch links on ADTRW, even reaching Futaba itself. This occurs at the same time when Lowtax begins to crack down on several undesirables on SA, including furries, Lolicon fans and others, effectively creating a Soviet-style police state of extremely arbitrary rules which cost users their precious $10 bux. Thanks to that, 4chan quickly rose beyond the tired, old site.

<Negi-Sensei> What is the difference between 4chan and 2chan?
<n0> 2
<Lost_Technology> 4chan is twice as good.
<Lost_Technology> Did someone seriously register 4chan?
<n0> Time for 8chan.

Many users from Something Awful used 4chan to vent their frustration with the site. After years of being on sites like SA, GameFAQs or Newgrounds, which had a very restrictive moderation in terms of allowed content and expression, the nearly complete freedom of 4chan was a breath of fresh air. It led the young 4channers to post all manners of things, like ironically pretending to be 13 years old Otakus (Something that would get you banned on ADTRW, even if it was ironic). The most problematic content being Lolicon and guro. By day one, /b/ was already filled to the brim with such. moot didn't like the idea of having forty years old pedophiles posting loli all over the site, so he quickly declared /b/ the “retard bin” and a temporal board. He created /l/ - lolikon and /g/ - guro to redirect them somewhere else. Those boards would later give him a lot of problems regarding hosting, and would end up on a separate site called not4chan, hosted by a friend of moot, ultimately disassociating from 4chan.

4chan drew many of its initial users from Raspberry Heaven and Something Awful's ADTRW board, and later from world2ch users. Early 4chan thus inherited a lot of Something Awful’s humour and memes, like image macros and demotivational posters. The original 4chan staff and moderators were drawn from ADTRW. The spinning head title image is an Australian ADTRW member called Roobar. The "Dot net fo'shizzle!" title image is by ADTRW poster Rick_Feynman, who coined the term "ZOMG!" (Pronounced "Zoh my god!") in an ICQ conversation with fellow SA goon Hannibal; although they admit the term was used before then, it wasn't widely used until popularized by Something Awful and 4chan.

The cultural elements 4chan drew from SA and 2chan – Ironic silliness from ADTRW, aggressiveness from FYAD and absurd Japanese jokes from 2chan and world2ch would prove to be a very attractive mix to people bored with normal manners. During its first years 4chan would be defined as a place where people came to express themselves, to say things for which they would be ridiculed or shunned on if done in real life – Black comedy, silly attitudes and racist jokes solidified 4chan's reputation a place where people could be both silly and hostile, good and evil. The news of 4chan's founding fired up much of world2ch, who felt they were stealing their thunder. They quickly began to protest and make some petty attempts at raiding, but a personal visit from moot quickly calmed down the situation, ending it with some friendly advice from both sides. Thus endeth the first western chan war.

The massive popularity of 4chan quickly becomes taxing, there are many errors in 4chan's coding and moot barely knew what half of it meant. Their first host dropping them would be due to a bug that made users load thumbnails as if they were full sized images, effectively increasing bandwidth to enormous levels. Many ADTRW and world2ch members offer a helping hand, fixing code or explaining concepts. Shii, [NPH], hova and thatdog helped tweaking the source code a little, and thatdog eventually releases Futallaby, which would become 4chan's first source code. Due to the enormous bandwidth costs, moot just barely manages to keep the site alive, through ads or donations. The controversial content becomes a major point of contention, forcing 4chan out of hosting at least 3 times. The majority of the anime boards take shape during this time, and the first tenets of 4chan culture are created under influence by ADTRW, FYAD , world2ch and 2chan. During a particularly hard time thanks to the owner of HentaiKey convincing PayPal to close moot’s account, effectively suspending him of donation money, he decided he had enough of 4chan and shuts it down, killing it for a fourth time.

* Quits: moot ( 
<cathead> moot has left us 
<cathead> what do we have left to live for 
<microwiz> let's go waste more of his bandwidth

The Beginnings of the Chanverse

4chan was not the first imageboard, the tittle belongs to world2ch. And neither of them would be alone for long. The creation of 4chan, which imported 2chan's source code, Futaba, led to the creation of Futallaby (created by thatdog), Shiichan, Shii's attempt at 2ch’s BBS and Kareha and eventually Wakaba, created by WAHa.06x36 (Dag Ågren). All these source codes allowed for the creation of a myriad smaller chans. The first alternative imageboard was probably 1chan, founded by thatdog while he tested Futallaby with moot, housing only one unique board, trains, which still lives to this day. The most important sites would be iichan (Idlechan), a site created when 4chan died on June 2004, which eventually died and became WAKAchan, an interesting concept where users would host boards on their own servers and link each other under the same banner, and 5chan, originally created by BarnacleED, it was home to the kind of Otakus ADTRW hated. He closed it when moot personally visited their IRC. The name was later taken by another user, Zadabab, associated with TheRowan, owner of HentaiKey. It required registration, was barely populated and had a wide range of pornographic boards. TheRowan used rather dirty tactics for the day, including selling mailing lists. When he saw that 5chan was not getting any posts, he decided to try and convince PayPal of dropping moot’s account. He succeeded, effectively cutting moot off donation money and forcing him to take the site down. While 5chan died shortly after, WAKAchan and iichan gave birth a whole net of imageboards extending into the modern Russian chanverse, some of which still live to this day.

Other minor chans where the original 7chan, a very short-lived site that lasted a few days, and 8chan founded by WTSnacks.

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