01/07/2022 (Fri) 10:28:56
It is sort of hard to explain now but the ability to create your own board was a big novelty at the time. The only other imageboard with that feature early on was masterchan. Masterchan was only moderated (in the sense of a global moderator) by one bloke who was the Dutch student that created the site. As a result of the patchy moderation, kiddy porn would stay up for a long time. eg. upwards of 24 hours. I saw hardcandy whilst I was there and I have never been able to forget it. I am not bothered by gore but CP is something that scares you badly.
The CP drew paedos and drove off normal users. 8chan had more features and was more stable than masterchan. I first came to 8chan through a raid that masterchan's /b/ was organising. I realised how much better 8chan was and decided to stay. Masterchan died fairly quickly and I can't say I miss it. The admin had good intentions but it became a paedo safe haven. You see this on kohlchan today except the paedos aren't quite as strong there.
The fact that you could interact directly with hotwheels (8chan's creator/admin) was a big part of the appeal later on. I had him call me a retard which is still a cherished memory for me. There were certainly problems with the site but you could voice your objections and they would be heard and listened to.
There was a certain optimism in the air in those days. It just doesn't exist anymore. I came to 8chan in late 2014 and left when Tarrant's shooting happened. I stopped going to /pol/ when the 2016 US election happened due to the influx of redditors/boomers but it feels like a lifetime. It certainly had an influence on me in those formative years of my life.
8chan's /k/ is the main board I miss. /tech/ was also good. /k/ never really regrouped any where. /k/ommandos were scattered across anon.cafe, julay.world and a few smaller sites but it was never the same as what it was. That is more than any other online community what I miss. I wasn't with them for very long, only a few years, but it feels like a lifetime to me.