For the past decade, the internet has become the champion of communication freedom. From news, technology, gaming, to social media, everything is now built with internet connectivity in mind so we can be continuously connected with each other. But, with all good things that come from the advancement of internet, comes the bad ones along as well. Most people may not care much about it since all they are looking for is already up there on the ‘surface’ of the internet. But, if you really want to know better about the history of the internet, you should learn about its dark side too, even if it’s only a little.
According to Nick Douglas, the dark side of the internet, also known as ‘Internet Ugly’, is an aesthetic produced by internet’s advantages namely speed and lack of gatekeepers. One of the prime examples of ‘Internet Ugly’ is 4chan, notoriously known as the birthplace of memes and rage comics, which made their way into mainstream internet not long after that.
I personally see 4chan as the gateway to the deep web. Its environments can be toxic to some, especially because the community is so tight regarding their anonymity and it has no strict guidelines. Even Reddit, which you can refer to as the organised version of 4chan, has its dark sides too. You will never know until you eventually stumbled upon a subreddit (i.e. specific topics on the website) that makes you immediately close your tab.
And also, one cannot talk about the deep web without a slight mention of TOR browser. I won’t go further in it, but you can read this article from Sydney Morning Herald that basically sums up everything that I know about the deep web. And if you ever decide to go further into the deep web, a word of warning: Proceed With Caution.