if you make a joke on Mastodon, no matter WHAT the content is, after 50+ boosts people will appear in the replies that take it completely at literal face value.

you could post "a man walks into a bar, says ouch!" and if it receives 50+ boosts, then you will begin seeing replies like "THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN STEEL BAR PLACEMENT IS DEREGULATED BY PROFIT DRIVEN CROOKS!"

this theory is commonly known as Eugen's Gambit. and i love it.

@jackdaw_ruiz there's a podcast about social media called Blocked Party (Stefan Heck's new show, if you know him) that's started referring to this as Dutchposting after they noticed a lot of these replies were from the Netherlands or nearby countries


this certainly makes sense. in my anecdotal/personal experience, it's usually been the Germans.

but my perceptions are always skewed on this topic because back in the 90's, Germans and Russians were the first long-distance english speaking friend circles i made on the internet, and there was a MARKED DIFFERENCE between Russians being able to parse American humor, and Germans really fumbling with it.

@jackdaw_ruiz yeah the German thing is very familiar to the point of being cliche. I think they might have actually fudged it a bit (because Germany definitely is included as one of the nearby countries) because it's just a funnier term than Germanposting and is an opportunity to do a less explored comedic accent

@jackdaw_ruiz @robotcarsley I can confirm that my fellow Germans love to do that. They seem to have access to a small pocket dimension providing a steady stream of pressurized outrage.

@jackdaw_ruiz now, what more research needs to be done is how many of those replies are serious, and how many of those are someone trying to riff


i make all of these determinations the old fashioned way -- based on whether a uranium atom has decayed or not.

@jackdaw_ruiz @sexybenfranklin
another archetype is represented here: the "compassionate unsolicited advice". I get that a lot. I swear I can literally shitpost about IBS or something and ten boosts in, there is guaranteed to be a reply from a complete stranger starting with "I'm sorry you're going to this, did you talk to an internal medicine specialist about it? did you ever try healing earth?"

@jackdaw_ruiz this is my goal with 20% of all posts I make, and 90% of all shitposts I make

@jackdaw_ruiz the other 80% and 10% I am the one who takes it too literally

@jackdaw_ruiz this why i always post 100% sincere things meant to be taken at literal face value

@jackdaw_ruiz (extremely seriously) I'm going to help get this to fifty boosts so we can put this hypothesis to the test!

@jackdaw_ruiz see, the key is to say something that is humorous even at face value

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