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Why so many dark, foreboding, negative avatars?

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posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 04:10 PM

Originally posted by pieman
on a more psychological note, mainstream culture at the moment is pretty light and plastic fantastic, generally speaking. it's all celebrity air brushed money chasing image based consumerism, the counter culture, which is ats' natural demographic, is naturally going to tend towards darker stuff to identify themselves as seperate from it.

I completely agree. That's how I felt back in high school 10+ years ago. The superficial, shallow culture around me drove me to adopt a darker aesthetic as a way to differentiate. Of course, all these divisions that we create and are encouraged by TPTB only serve to blind us to the essential unity of all life. But I think as long as you recognize that, there is no harm in playing with the dark side as well as the light.

We didn't choose to incarnate on this plane just so we could run from the things we don't like and return to the other realms. We're here to experience the vast range of dualities and multiplicities that make up our "reality." The important thing is to keep it all in perspective and remember that nothing really "is" what it appears.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 04:10 PM
I pose a question in response to SkyFloating's excellent description above,

if we see those Avata's as individual slippery slope before a new un PC correct meme of Avaratism could start,

People, or even just Avatars themselves descriminated against based on their appearance.


Stop Avartarism Now,

I should take no more notice, or allow my impressions cloud my view if a person is a "Goth" or a "surfer" or a "label", and further moor, maybe this is insid-uos, and we subconsciously react to other members posts, partly based on their avatars, rather than prose and content and contribution.

I myself do admit too all that I look at some Avatars and if a large flag with planes and explosions, or something similar , that yes I do judge and react partially due to that, first online impression!

I think honestly as said we are all guilty of it even if not aware of it!

The wonderful online ID eh... the world soo badly needs a new Geeky Leary Freud type guy to make sense of it all in modern environments.

Kind Regards

I might be green and 1 foot tall but please treat me equally

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 04:34 PM
reply to post by BO XIAN

If it makes someone feel uncomfortable then my Avatar has done it's job.

Welcome to the intarwebs.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 04:34 PM
One man's "dark" is another man's "light"...

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 04:52 PM
reply to post by Rumrunner

Well it is listed as the number 1 "Conspiracy Theory" related website.
There is a dark implication and possible attraction. There appears to be plenty of
white lighters here so I wouldn't worry to much.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 05:41 PM
Interesting thread OP
should also include nicknames.

My avatar which I did myself, is a representation of the NDE I had, and also signifies my interest in spirituality. I believe no matter how difficult life gets, there'll always be a light at the end of the tunnel. My nickname is from a magazine I used to subscribe too called "kindred Spirit". The reason I chose kindred is because on a soul level I believe we are all related and hopefully some day, all part of the same blessed family.

Full image, had to squash it down quite a bit to get it to fit.

P.S That's not me in the picture. I'm male, so please no more U2U's asking for more pictures.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 06:25 PM
My avatar is simply a tribute to the dark lord

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 06:46 PM
Strangely enough, I never really noticed an excessive number of "dark" avatars until I started looking through this thread after reading the OP
. Frankly some of the avatars in the UFO&Aliens section scare the crap out of me, but other than that I haven't really noticed anything that impacted or offended me.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 06:48 PM
I changed mine again! I hope you all like it. I was leary about people a real picture of, Kitty Pryde it is!

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 06:49 PM
I dont see anything wrong with having a darker avater.
Just a matter of taste

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 06:57 PM
Each person's avatar is his or her own preroggative. I've had one member call me out and send me nasty U2U's about my avatar before (which I will not name, you know who you are) and I felt like it was really uncalled for. I feel like one's avatar should not be judged just as you would not walk up to a person on the street and start juding them for what they wear or tell them to put another shirt on. It's simply an expression of individuality.

As for my avatar, I made a joke about it earlier in the thread, but seriously though, its just friggin cool looking to me. I have always been the one to root for the villains in movies and Sephiroth happens to strike me as the coolest damn villain ever. So I had to have him as my avatar. Does this mean I go around killing people, or summoning Satan, or eating the flesh of man? No...not really.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:04 PM

Originally posted by MemoryShock

And it isn't necessarily to evoke negative feelings. To me, it is a valid representation of what I think and feel towards the status of least mine.

I added the words to hopefully clarify and motivate thought on that which I think is relevant...Memory is an Associative Storm....we are reactive humans by nature. By comprehending our reactions on a mental level, perhaps we can better understand the actions of others.

Hmmmmmm . . . memory is an associateive storm. Probably more for schizophrenics and others with seizures. LOL.

Storm implies a lot of chaotic firings. Most healthy minds and healthy memories are not THAT chaotic.

Let me check your avatar out in more detail . . .

Seems to me that the lightening and the red part are clear and communicative, somehow.

The jumble of images on the bottom communicate less effectively, it seems, to me. The brown type critter on the upper right of the bottom jumble of stuff is mystifyingly unclear without any seeming . . . purpose or import for the mystifying part. I expect it gets ignored a lot.

The brain part kind of links with the wording. The white strip above and to the right of the brain is likewise a puzzle but not a very interesting puzzle worth a lot of curiosity is the feeling I get from it.

Not sure what the skeleton hands are trying to communicate.

Combined with "WORKING ON MY DISSASSOCIATES DEGREE" maybe the bottom jumble of stuff makes a bit more sense . . . though dissassociation seems to value NON-sense more. Another puzzle.

I think on sum, for most average citizens . . . it would leave a bottom line of discomfort, wary puzzlement, avoidance sorts of feelings. If that's the goal, I think it succeeds very well at that goal.

If the goal is to bridge gaps between people and share meaningful dialogue about various 'memory storms,' I'm not sure how successful it would be--probably fairly successful with folks who see the world similarly.

For old codgers like me . . . especially women of my generation, I'd think they'd avoid it a lot. Some of the men of my generation would be intrigued. Probably more than 50% would consider it toooooo strange to bother with.

I don't know that I'm much of a current youth expert to guess about their responses other than the general folks who are my students in Psych 101.

Maybe 5-20% of them might have some interest because of the avatar. I suspect most would be somewhat put-off by it. If your target is that 5-20%, you probably have a great screening device there.

Oh, I haven't given an over-all gestalt sort of emotional response. . . .

I think it does communicate disquiet fairly forcefully. Perhaps threat. Perhaps death. The skeleton hands could easily communicate evil to many--as likely would the font style of the wording. Was that your intent? I suspect one of the most common FEELINGS triggered by the avatar in the general population would be discomfort, wariness, a desire for avoidance.

It was an interesting avatar to examine in more detail. Thanks.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:11 PM

Originally posted by offtheheezay
whats wrong with a dark foreboding figure reading a newspaper on a park bench?

Thanks for your kind post.

Hmmmmm . . . Guess I don't see the figure as that dark and foreboding. I suppose if we imagine that he's some sort of ManInBlack in disguise we could make him more forboding . . . or perhaps imagine that he's a serial killer lying in wait for his next victim.

But all of those require inserting a LOT of stuff into the avatar that's not at all clearly there.

I just realized that the far left of the bench is a much brighter purple. Not sure what that signifies.

Seems to me that it's one of the more neutral avatars on this thread, so far.

Folks can easily take it negative or positive depending on what they impute into it.

I suppose with "On the prowl" it could easily be seen as more negative--particularly by women interested in a long term relationship.

Personally, I think it's kind of a fun avatar. A good kind of THEMATIC APPERCEPTION TEST stimulus sort of pic.

Thanks much.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:25 PM
Like others have said, this site deals with the dark the foreboding and the negative. Its simply natural that member avatars reflect this idea.

An avatar is an individual statement. Some avatars deal with a political view while others gravitate towards the artistic. It's personal taste that this site does a great job in encouraging.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:29 PM

I suspect one of the most common FEELINGS triggered by the avatar in the general population would be discomfort, wariness, a desire for avoidance.

Perhaps...the skeleton hand is that of Death himself in reference to memory. We as a forum tend to focus on the news as it is occurring now and rarely connect the dots of previous news stories....such is dissociation. We as a society tend to focus on more that comforts and appeals to the 'happiness' of life.

But that isn't the case. Many people in power take advantage of this and it is their actions that we as a society tend to overlook because many of us don't know what it is we can do....unfortunate but true when you consider that the media is designed to assuage public concerns...even if it means to misrepresent the actual goings on of our political and international social structure.

Memory is an Associative Storm.

Perhaps many do not have a chaotic memory....I of course concede that. But if placed in a rapid fire verbal Rorschach test, it is indeed interesting what some may express.

The implication is that the physiological reality of individual memory is implicit the sense that people can remember every day and moment if they utilized a longer degree of separation than "six degrees"...

Thanks for the my opinion, my avatar is very subtle. Which indicates, or I hope, that I am only interested in people who want to know...

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:37 PM
reply to post by Mad_Hatter

. I feel like one's avatar should not be judged just as you would not walk up to a person on the street and start juding them for what they wear or tell them to put another shirt on. It's simply an expression of individuality

I notice I've kind of routinely been responding to the avatars . . . uhhhh given my profession and bent and what the thread topic is, I guess.

IF folks prefer that I didn't, I hope they let me know before I get to theirs! LOL. I do scan the end of the thread before returning to respond to the next post in sequence. But I might miss such a request. NO offense intended, please.

I have a comment about the above quote, though.

I don't know what to do with "should not be judged."

That's nonsensical to me.

Everything we do which others observe and are aware of is AUTOMATICALLY JUDGED. Everything.

That's what perceptions and sorting perceptions and weighing perceptions is all about. IF WE DIDN'T we'd be IMMOBILIZED by a hurricane flood of data all treated equally important and equally valid and equally demanding of our attention. We could not function.

And, I think that it's kind of super nonsensical to put a lot of effort into selection and design of an avatar--at some level--putting it out there for all and sundry to view and form opinions about, have feelings about--REACTIONS TO--and then to claim such "shouldn't be judged."

One can say that the live-long day. Won't hinder 100% of the viewers from judging it consciously and unconsciously. It's human. It's automatic.

Now what they SAY/WRITE about their feelings, perceptions, judgments of the avatar is a whole 'nother ball of wax.

However, I think if one wanted to avoid all judgments about one's avatar, one would avoid having an avatar, at all. Or, one would choose a super neutral inoffensive, benign image--realizing that even that would be offensive to some folks.


The issue of walking up to folks on the street and judging and communicating those judgments immediately about their clothing is . . . a huge stretch from viewing avatars on an anonymous NON-FACE TO FACE medium where on the whole avatars are DESIGNED to elicit judgments and strong responses. Otherwise, folks wouldn't bother choosing, designing and posting them.

I don't know of anyone who spends hours, if not days designing and choosing an avatar, spends the points and then sits back and says . . .

"THERE. I hope NO ONE notices my avatar, at all."

That wouldn't be sensible, at all.


I don't know quite what to do with "It's simply an expression of individuality."

In our INDIVIDUAL GLORIFYING culture . . . there's little simple about expxressions of individuality.

And, here, on ATS, individuality seems to have been taken to a new low for anarchy far too often. Individuality seems to be most glorified hereon when it's poking long pointy sticks in other members' eyes, hearts, sensibilities because the other members aren't PERCEIVED BY THE WRITER to be as bright, scientific, clever at ferreting out hoaxers, hip, gothic, . . . whatever the current 'in' adjectives might be.

The above phrase SEEMS like it's designed to say:


Welllllllllllllllllll, excuse me. If an axe murderer is rushing toward my family swinging wildly and screaming about his wonderful expression of individuality--I'll quickly and forcefully beg to differ.

Society CANNOT FUNCTION without accountability.

The NWO folks have been shredding it quite successfully on that score for decades--by their design.

On the whole, I'm a great fan of individuality. I'm probably one of the more unique birds of rare plumage that most people who know me have ever met. I don't have a lot of choice about it. It's my genetics plus environment plus choices and conditionings along the way. It's my existential thrownness.

On the other hand, individuality that is not meaningly and effectively communicated to other individuals in mutually satisfying ways can quickly become a very stifling, deadly, dull, rut of a prison of one.

imho, My 2 cents, of course.

I do much appreciate your post and the trigger i provided for the above pontification. No offense intended toward you as a person, at all.

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:43 PM

Originally posted by offtheheezay
whats wrong with a dark foreboding figure reading a newspaper on a park bench?

I forgot to note in my last post to someone . . . .


WHAT'S WRONG WITH . . . bad about, good about . . .

As I note to my students . . . to be able to tell WHETHER anything is


One had best know 3 things:

1. What is the goal concerned?

2. What is the criteria, the standard of measure that tells you when the goal has been reached?

3. What is the context?

I try to couch all my comments about the avatars in terms of AN ASSUMED GOAL. Primarily, I'm only making such comments IN TERMS OF THAT ASSUMED GOAL/THOSE ASSUMED GOALS.

If the goals of the avatar owner are quite different than those I'm assuming, my comments would be meaningless.

I don't consider myself Almighty God at the final judgment juding avatars for points to subtract or add toward eternal reward or punishment! Goodness!

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:48 PM
reply to post by BO XIAN

I personally welcome your comments, BO XIAN...

The psychology of the D-Ego is an up and comer and we would all do well to make an attempt to understand why we express ourselves in the fashion that we do on the opposed to the 'normal' expressions we are socially conditioned to express in our day to day 'real lives'....

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:55 PM
This thread has encouraged me to throw together a little image -- not really an avatar, I guess, more like a slogan.

It's 'negative' in that it plays around with photo-negative perception of contrast.

To see the effect, stare at the ATS logo in the middle. Whaddaya think?

posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 07:58 PM

Originally posted by Ian McLean
To see the effect, stare at the ATS logo in the middle. Whaddaya think?

I'm thinking that if I were to have an MRI done...that would be what was recorded...

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