The NetGods Must be Crazy
Tales From The Bitstream
Jeff Schult and Nicole Chardenet
Welcome to "Ask the Net Gods," where the authors humbly give up their
allotted space to the folks who can answer the Really Hard Questions. So light the Net
Gods' favorite incense (Acapulco Gold), consult your magic (rearview mirror) crystal, and
astrally project your superego-id out to the farthest edge of the Pleiades, where you, the
humble cyber-pilgrim, can find the Virtual Authorities on Cyberspace.
How do I get on the Internet?
The Net Gods are getting tired of this question. Ask any 12-year-old.
Okay, I got an Internet provider. Now where are all the babes?
What a typical guy question. Forget all those AOL ads with the gorgeous sexy chick in
the tight Spandex catsuit intimating she has
actually used a modem in her life. The Net Gods say the babes are everywhere you think
they're not. In other words, anyone in cyberspace claiming to be a breathtaking babe is
invariably a blue-haired old grandmother, an acne-scarred teenage heavy-metalhead, or an
aging gay novelist who laughs himself silly to see grown men falling all over each other
in local chat rooms trying to make time with someone they actually believe was Miss
What's the best "Web Browser" to use?
Whichever one will utilize really waycool hot new Web programming applications but
which is not currently compatible with whatever operating system you have.
How do we know there really are Net Gods?
Zaaappppp. Any questions? Next time it won't be just the modem.
OK, OK ... but if there really are Net Gods, then why are there bad things on the
Internet, like multilevel marketers, Scientologists and right-wing Republicans?
Next, you'll want to know how many bits can dance on the head of a microprocessor. The
Net Gods assure you there is also Karma on the Net, what goes around comes around, and
that They will get Theirs. OK?
What about pornography on the Internet?
What, where to find it? You dirty little pervert! You know what we do with
No, no, I mean will it be abolished by Congress, religious zealots and other
Oh, OK. The Net Gods see the porn issue as a passing annoyance. The passage of the
"indecent" content clause of the telecommunications bill will ensure that huge
numbers of people will deliberately publish indecent material on the Internet so that they
can brag to their friends about defying the law. So, in the short run, there will be far
more indecent material on the Net than there ever would have been otherwise.
Taking the long view, which we as Net Gods always do, we foresee that the issue will
mysteriously disappear after the November election.
Why did Germany pressure Compuserve to censor all the dirty newsgroups in Usenet?
Because the Germans feel they have the right to require their only Internet provider to
protect Germany's generous population of violently bigoted loud-mouthed hate-filled Nazi
skinhead Internet propagandists from talk that might injure their delicate sensibilities.
I have an Internet Service Provider and my girlfriend is on America Online. Is
the relationship worth pursuing?
We assume you are asking the Net Gods this because you can't afford to call the Psychic
Hotline, but the sad answer to your question is "uh-uh." If for no other reason
than that AOL is banning so many words from use on its service that it will not be long
before members cannot complete simple sentences in English.
Doesn't Prodigy's "pentagram" logo really mean the company is really a
front for a secret Satanic cult?
No, actually Satanism is a front for a secret Prodigy cult. But don't tell anyone.
I just put up my own "Home Page" on the Internet and so far I'm the
only person to visit it other than my mother. Why?
Because, Grasshopper, thousands of people are putting up personal home pages every day.
The Net Gods approve of this, but didn't foresee that 90 percent of all self-published
pages would consist of photos of beloved pets. We're omnipotent, not prescient.
We would like to point out that if all of America Online's alleged 4.5 million
customers took them up on their free home page offer, it would take almost 43 years, at
five minutes a page, for one person to look at them all. We're surprised your mother
I emailed the president DAYS ago and he hasn't gotten back to us yet. What's his
The Net Gods don't know. President Clinton always writes US back promptly. Are you sure
you have the right email address?
I don't give a flying floppy disk about the Internet and I think the very idea of
Net Gods is blasphemy. What do you think of that?
We keep track of your kind, and make sure your kids get free upgrades of "Mortal Vivisectionist Combat-Nazis of Doom" and all Microsoft products.
"Ask the Net Gods" is a sometimes feature of "Tales from the Bitstream." If you have a real or a good smart-ass question, we'd love to hear it. Submissions may or may not be answered, and may or may not be used. If there's enough interest, we'll make it a regular feature of the "Tales" home pages.
(Note: No one cared enough to ask. Oh, well. ;-))
Again, you can reach us by e-mail at: jeffbot at this domain
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