After a successful but unprofitable call back (did very well, but didn’t book it), I accepted a temporary position curating content at a very popular cat meme website. I basically spend all day doing what most people at work are trying not to get caught doing. And, my friends, it is awesome. This might be why I haven’t posted in awhile — it turns out when you spend all day trolling the internet, you don’t really want to be online anymore.
For the most part, I’m really enjoying myself. I get a weird OCD pleasure from having to fill up my quota of funny posts for each of the pages I preside over. I made a little spreadsheet and I x off each time slot and then highlight the row when I’m done and oh, um, also, I’m a total nerd and can’t believe that I’m so proud of this. What’s weird is that I’m not even a very organized person. I wish I was. I also associate organization with aesthetic taste and I don’t have that either. I wish I were one of those people whose houses look like it happened on purpose, but I just shove furniture around and throw shit up on the wall and hope it doesn’t fall.
Anyway, despite the fact that I don’t think I’m naturally organized, I get serious satisfaction out of filling in bubbles and crossing off things when I complete tasks.
I have pretty much no other tasks other than to fill my daily quota, which is great, because whenever I’m done, I can go home. But before I leave, there is one little mud field I have to drag myself across.
Comment moderation. Oh God, comment moderation. I try not to read comments in general because I know there lurks trolls, but now I have to look at them and read them carefully. Here are few things that I probably already knew, but really had hammered home after three weeks of doing this:
1) There are a lot of disgusting, racist, sexist, stupid, ignorant, and cruel people commenting on the internet.
2) People are really impatient about letting the world see what disgusting, racist, sexist, stupid, ignorant, and cruel things they have to say.
When you post something with cursing or anything sexual, it gets sent to a human being for moderation. This takes what we call TIME. Yes, there are bots that can censor the obvious. But when you get all profane up in here or you say “I would love to see Fluttershy in a hentai movie” or you start posting links to things without saying where those link end up (::shudder::), sometimes it gets sent to a special little purgatory where some poor sap paid hourly has to sift through them all and either censor your potty mouth so advertisers will keep throwing money at us or make sure you’re not a Nigerian prince. So here are your choices. Either don’t say profane things or just wait until it gets through the system. You know what you should NOT do?
POST IT OVER AND OVER AND OVER BECAUSE YOU DIDN’T SEE IT IMMEDIATELY POP UP.
Because then you freeze that poor sap’s computer when she tries to load all the comments and realizes that pages and pages of them are of IHateBlackPeople69 or BroniesSuckC0ck666 saying “fuk u mods, wheres my coment????”
And you know what that poor sap does?
After painstakingly censoring all your inane insults, she will approve every single one of those posts and make them live. So that everyone can see what an impatient jerk you are and your Oh So Important message will lose all meaning after being repeated thirty times in the comments.
Yeah. That’s right. I do that on purpose. Suck my ****.
I will say that there was one protest comment that I greatly admire and actually didn’t censor at all because it was awesome. We have to censor “penis” and “vagina” because, again, the advertisers have requested it. It’s not because we think they are bad words, we’re not shaming anyone, it just comes down to money.
However, one very clever commenter decided, in protest, to write Eve Ensler’s “Reclaiming Cunt” monologue in a comment, but she put spaces in between the letters so the bot wouldn’t pick it up for cursing (it did anyway because posts with spaces in between the letters are usually trying to sell you some a m a z i n g w a y s t o w o r k f r o m h o m e, but still, kudos). I approved that mofo so fast.
And finally 3) Users are ever-hungry monsters who choke on anything that they’ve seen before as if it were the very bile of Satan. I’m new to the site so sometimes I (GASP) repost things that have already made teh rounds. And OH the snarky bastards that come out to let me know that I have wasted valuable seconds of their time with a repost. So wasted is their time that they feel the need to actually comment on the post to let me know that “Ugh, this is SO OLD. Just DELETE this already, stupid mods” or my favorite passive-aggressive response “re-re-re-repost.”
But despite having to begin and end my day with this inanity, I’m actually really enjoying myself. I’m especially enjoying making my own money again.
And herein lies the trap.
It’s now been one year and two weeks since I moved to Seattle to start my new life. I’ve struggled through feelings of uselessness, selfishness, and anxiety about me not working. And now I’m working. And bringing in money. And if they offer me a full time permanent position, I have to say no. Because that is not what I want.
I want to be on stage. I want be in plays and musicals. I want to write. I want to be able to go somewhere for a week and not have to ask anyone’s permission. And the last time I had a full time job, I had to sacrifice all of those things. Can I delude myself into thinking that won’t happen again? Just so I can say that I have a job and not feel embarrassed? So I can spend money however I want and not feel like I’m sucking our nest egg dry? So I can feel like I’m doing something during the day that has impact (hey, making people laugh has impact, don’t be mean :P)?
I don’t know. It might not even be my choice. If they don’t offer to continue with me, then I won’t have to worry about it. But for now I spend my free time wondering.