By now if you’ve ever been to a Wal-Mart or grocery store parking lot in a big city, you’ve already seen panhandlers. Some of them are broke as shit and genuinely need a few bucks to live day to day. Some of them are pretending to be poor to make money, only for them to take off when they think nobody’s looking in their luxury SUV. Then some of them are just perpetually homeless, turning down any sort of help as you see, they enjoy the homeless lifestyle. Some are mentally ill, some are drug addicts who only live day to day wanting another fix, and some are just lazy bums who want to stimulate their mind as they live day to day leeching off other people.
There are also a lot of dodgy charities out there, with scandals ranging from the classic corruption to not doing what they are claiming to do. Sites like Charity Navigator have popped up offering to make sure your money is going towards the cause, and not some CEO’s executive jet or mansions. There are also dodgy ones with vague names that resemble trusted ones that love to scam old people out of their hard earned savings.
On the internet though, it’s obvious that there is a whole culture of broke ass people who have absolutely no money management skills who need a few bucks for video games and gadgets. The minute you start going into the fringe parts of the web, you’ll see all these identical looking Twitter bios, selfies, and icons. The thing that sticks out the most with these people though is their living situation is all identical. Their McJob won’t fuel their hedonistic lifestyle and they end up living paycheck to paycheck, with a serious event like a car breakdown or a first world problem like a new video game launch or optional plastic surgeries being enough to drain their income. Due to this, they all are guaranteed to have a few donation links on their bio. Patreon, paypal.me, Amazon wishlists, venmo, cashapp, and more tend to make frequent appearances on the bios of grifters. It’s obvious from the get go, they want your money even though you have never met this person at all and unlike someone else asking for donations, it’s not for their pet or for their dire financial issues. It’s for their indulgences.
Nobody is “unique”
To first understand how these people pop up though we have to take a look at social media culture. Now social media culture first gave rise to the idea that everyone is their own star in their own personal reality show and as cell phones got increasingly more powerful cameras, this mentality solidified itself. The problem is, a lot of people aren’t cut up to handle that lifestyle of being out in the public eye constantly being criticized and this led to what could be called hugbox culture. No criticism is allowed anymore, you’re supposed to ass pat people no matter how much they come off as a freakshow. This mentality has spread far and wide nowadays in modern culture, as TV shows that previously would have mocked bizarre subcultures now try to make them look better. The TLC or TruTV era mentality of “look at this crazy person” has faded away in the eyes of the big corporate machine, replaced with the Vice or BuzzFeed mentality “look how inspiring these crazy people are.” They want to prop these crazy people up on a shelf as role models as people to be inspired by despite all evidence to the contrary being in open view. While the oldschool mentality of laughing at crazy still is alive and well on sites like Kiwi Farms or cringe pages on social media sites, it’s pretty clear that the corporate social media overlords have chosen to fuel the delusions of crazy people on the internet. They’d rather shield them from any sort of criticism they run across while conditioning them to be offended instead of telling them to improve or even to be who they are without caring what people think.
But that’s just what enables this. What’s really going on and causing people on social media to act like this is well, the no criticism mentality mixed with the idea that you should try as hard as possible to be special and unique. Furthermore, a lot of teenagers lack a sense of belonging. They’re isolated from their families, isolated from the community, and isolated from religion. But they do have their computers for unlimited internet access and their peers who are the same as they are. This leads to a lot of people attempting to be special, only to also do the same thing every single one of their peers is doing to fit in. For the extremely detached individuals this can be severe, especially if their only friends are online or they threw their friends under the bus because they ended up in a group that promoted cutting off anyone who doesn’t agree with you. These groups can never give criticism and even if they finally do, the people in these groups will simply leave the group and become further and further isolated to only be friends with those who say yes to any bad decision whatsoever.
You can go on Twitter profiles and assume people are bots, but when you see their selfies you’ll realize they’re just being cloned in a vat somewhere in the Pacific Northwest part of the USA. Or they’re simply being brainwashed there. Either way, the results are the same and this leads to the grifting culture I see online.
“Please give me money, please”
Everyone fantasizes about having money in the western world. Money is needed to do quite a lot of things, especially as the economy has shifted towards working jobs and away from getting ahead with your own business and whatnot. If you weren’t born into having money, you either have to work hard for it or you’re screwed. The rise of internet wallet services and Patreon though has changed the dynamic quite a bit. See, these services were intended for legit purposes originally, like sending money online for business use or donations for broke families to raise money for critical expenses from other family members, friends, and rich strangers. With the unchecked social degeneracy of the internet though and the collapse of services like YouTube or Twitch in the “make money from doing little” realm, the newest way of making money for lazy people has been through donations from random people or “paypigs” as they’re commonly called.
Go on Twitter and you’ll find lots of people begging for money as their first instinct. It’s not about needing money for a family emergency, it’s because they need money literally like right now to literally exist.
Sometimes it’ll be in a bio even, like this will be the first thing they want to tell you about them. “I need money please”. Here’s an average Twitter bio of a beggar, I’ve censored out all the random other details because these people are all the same to a T.
At the same time though, a lot of them live this very hedonistic lifestyle. They just want to play video games, have the latest iPhone, and be able to tweet all day. Why work a job when you can write short posts online? And when your friends aren’t pushing you to improve, do you have any incentive to get off your ass and get your shit together?
They’ll talk about how bad shit is, but they only want ass pats on the internet. When it comes to helping them out, they’ll turn it down because they don’t want the help. They just want to wallow in their own shallow existence, living off money from other people until they die at a young age. You can try to give them life tips but they’ll ignore them, you can try handing them job offers and they won’t care because it’s too much work. In their own eyes as one even admitted, the only “help” they want is money. Money for what exactly though, video games? Drugs? Electronic devices? Rent? Well they’ll say rent a lot but it’s like how the panhandlers here always say it’s for bus money and anyone who’s been in that situation will ask “Okay, what’s it really going towards?”
You know, if I ended my post right there this wouldn’t be so constructive or fit in with what my blog seems to be about, which is me analyzing society and the culture of the internet as of late. It’d come across as yet another generic rant on the internet, of which many already exist that are similar. So I’m going to talk about my thoughts on this.
Besides stating the obvious “don’t give money to beggars online”, it’s also a reflection of the state of social media and society. People don’t want to work; they want to take the easy route in life. Being homeless or rooming with people doesn’t require work or effort, it simply requires posting in front of a computer. It also allows one to ask a question, are these jobless losers the kinds of people you want to be around online? When one gets sucked into this culture online, being a lazy bum is not only encouraged, but so many do it. Peer pressure is one obvious cause, but in this case it isn’t also always working the way it’s commonly seen in TV shows or PSAs with a shady dude asking “hey kid wanna try weed?” Oftentimes people online are easily influenced by big social media users, just like they were back in the days of TV. In this case, there are a lot of people in communities online who just love to beg for money and who simply don’t want to better themselves. This also tends to be seen in left wing communities online too, since at least in the right wing communities there’s been a whole push for self-improvement going on even if their advice is basic stuff even your mom can tell you like “clean your room”, “quit fapping”, or “go to the gym”…which to be fair is something anyone who didn’t throw their parents under the bus would know.
And if you get into groups where ebeggars talk, they beg to each other. They’ll also retweet other ebeggars on social media. Here’s one saying they’re getting away from their parents in a group, and their linked tweet says they want HRT instead. That sounds a bit familiar.
“Please give me money” they say, but what do they do with the money you have to ask yourself? They’ll say they’re creating something, but you’ll dig and it’s either garbage or they’re lazy tweeters posting all day on a social media site. They’re too busy retweeting political stuff, dumb memes, and whining about their parents. But actually producing what they claim to be making? Nah, they’re just bitching online instead.
But you know the worst part about this? These types of people are oftentimes shielded from criticism. I still remember vividly when someone on Twitter who often mocks those types of people was attacked for mocking somebody e-begging for Fallout 4 DLC. Adding to the problem is that a lot of these people fall under “protected groups”, or groups that mocking will earn you a ban from mainstream social media services. Perhaps the best known example of this was Chloe Sagal, a failed trans game developer who killed themselves by setting themselves on fire. Chloe Sagal was ebegging because they needed life-saving surgery for a car accident. As the lies added up a Destructoid journalist blew the whistle, and was met with being fired and blacklisted from the gaming journalism industry. More info can be read on the Chole Sagal ED article, but the gist of it is this. If someone hides behind groups, they can be untouchable and this applies to e-begging as well. The more you use social media, the more you’ll discover how untouchable some groups are, and how you’re not allowed to critique them for the sole virtue of them being in a protected group.
But oh well, that’s the state of the internet nowadays. It’s full of lazy bums begging as they slowly crawl towards their deathbead…in a gamer chair in front of a computer monitor, expensive mechanical keyboard, and gaming mouse. It’s a shame that’s what society pushes for nowadays, instead of hard working adults who make enough to make a living without having to resort to begging for money from those who had to work for it.