People share long-forgotten internet trends on Reddit

As a millennial elder, I keep in mind when the web was utterly uncharted territory. Plenty of new issues to find and expertise, with apparently no guidelines. The World Large Net was actually the Wild West, and we have been courageous web explorers.

With the sheer velocity with which data travels via social media in the present day, we’re used to web developments that merely come and go. A lot in order that we could have forgotten some gems that have been as soon as thought-about a “it” factor.

Bear in mind the unparalleled joys of constructing your Neopet comfortable? Or the moment vanity increase you get once you see that web site soar within the backside nook of your digital masterpiece? (Bear in mind, we did not have “parables” to base ourselves on throughout this darkish interval.) These are only a few traces of a not-so-distant previous – as soon as cherished, however now buried in antiquity.

A Reddit consumer not too long ago requested, “What factor the web was once loopy about however is now forgotten about?” Folks’s solutions have been a wild nostalgia trip. Use this checklist to take a stroll down reminiscence lane, or to confuse a Technology Z good friend. Both approach, it is a little bit enjoyable—one thing the web will all the time be an excellent useful resource for.

With out additional ado, listed below are 9 of the strangest web developments that nobody remembers:

1. Obtain customized cursor results to your PC

through GIPHY

Ah sure, who needs to see a boring arrow transfer round their display screen whereas they will faux to wave fairy mud round them? Or rainbows, or snowflakes, or bubbles, for that matter. There actually was simply one thing magical about facilitating cursors. Certain, it was stuffed with bugs, however typically that is the value you pay for a little bit of a whim, is not it?

“I gave my household’s laptop plenty of viruses again within the 2000s attempting to click on issues with a lightsaber.” – @TW1103

2. Pre-Google serps

Before Google, alternative search engines

One engine to seek for all of them….


Superior, it is onerous to think about a time when googling wasn’t an actual phrase. Consider it or not, youngsters, it was all a go when looking for obscure film trivia or long-lost recipes.

Every search engine web site had its personal character – Alta Vista opted for a no-frills strategy, Dogpile made a (by no means humorous) joke of the day, and Ask Jeeves supplied a wise server primarily based on a personality in a novel collection by PG Wodehouse, able to quench all of the curiosity that got here within the type of A query.

Many of those separate quirks have been downright revolutionary, and whereas they have been swallowed up by the widespread success of Google, they clearly impressed a lot of their total format. Certain, different serps nonetheless exist, however I believe we are able to all agree that Google is sovereign.

3. AOL On the spot Messenger (AIM)

through GIPHY

Hulu’s “PEN15,” about two center faculty college students within the early 2000s, nailed all the pieces about AOL chatrooms neatly — from the annoying display screen names, to the distant melodramatic messages, to the obnoxious login sound they’d Pavlovian affect on youngsters, involuntarily introduced their eyes to the display screen. It’s pure gold.

After all, there are some facets of AIM that may be finest forgotten – primarily the harmful approach during which teenagers might be simply exploited.

“I used to be 14 however enjoying 17 as a result of 17 ‘growed up’ an excessive amount of for me, however I did not really feel there was sufficient age distinction to inform the lie.” – @KayleighJK

“I used to be 13 years previous pretending to be 18 in AOL chat rooms. I used to be uncovered to plenty of issues at a younger age. Think about if I stated my precise age” – @Chickeggsandlegs

4. Flash video games

Early Internet Games

Did you get Flash?


Flash video games – They’re typically free, very straightforward to play and often solely require Adobe Flash. In line with comedian e-book sources (CBR), one Flash sport particularly known as “Membership Penguin” was so beloved that when it closed in 2017, “1000’s of gamers signed in within the final moments of the sport, and did all the pieces they might in sport earlier than it is gone eternally.”

5. Good Guestbook

Early Internet Trends

That was positively good.


A very simple and direct option to join with individuals world wide. Guests from all around the world can digitally “signal” and depart a private message, often issues like “Hey, I actually loved your web site, it was a pleasure looking.” See now that was good? Not fairly just like the aggressive Yelp critiques we’re used to.

6. GeoCities

Geographical areas

Too few pixels, too little time.


In science fiction and fantasy? Head to “Area51”. Extra sports activities followers? Click on on “Colosseum”. GeoCities have launched digital neighborhoods primarily based on particular pursuits, all on websites stuffed with flashy graphics and a few sizzling new stuff known as GIFs. This was a time when enthusiasm for the Web as an area for group constructing and self-expression was at an all-time excessive, even when trying again at implementation was primitive.

Though the times of GeoCities are lengthy gone, some vestiges of their glory stay, as such.

7. Webrings

internet retro

Within the bachelor period (earlier than the algorithm).


As Brittany Vincent, a contributor to MIC, astutely put it, “Werings are a forgotten relic of the previous, an answer created to resolve an issue that not exists.” When web sites have been so costly and restricted – to not point out that serps did not fairly hit their stride – there was a little bit field on the backside of the positioning you have been really visiting, which revealed much more magical locations you might go to primarily based on the situation you have been at present… effectively This was the final word luxurious.

“Man, for those who discover a ring on the web that you’re focused on it’s like gold. Save! To not be confused with StumbleUpon, that was in a while in addition to magical.” —DanAykroydFanClub

Which leads us to…

8. StumbleUpon

Ask Reddit

Who is aware of the place you will see that?


Prior to now, the Web was not an all-knowing entity that was fed by algorithms. A part of the enjoyable was the limitless exploration via the thriller. There is no such thing as a higher instance of this than StumbleUpon, the place guests click on a button and land some other place at random. It was a web based roulette sport. That was thrilling.

9. Badass on Fb

Early Internet Trends

Hey… I am nonetheless right here…


Typically, the Web imitates life. Such was the case with Fb’s “twitch” function, the place customers might click on a button to remind one other consumer of their presence. Was that ineffective? sure. Was it intrusive? Sure too. Regardless, it was all outrage.

Like many Fb options, the “pokes” in a barrage of notifications can disappear, which may result in lower than excellent realization.

“I had a good friend poke me and I by no means seen the notification. He died. I now have this unreturned poke as a reminder that I’ll by no means be capable of return it once more.” – @Klaus0225

Internet trends

It is time to surf the net!


Certain, in the present day’s know-how is quicker, extra environment friendly, and far-reaching, however we’ll all the time have a spot in our hearts for the shaky early magic of the Web. Type of like these previous annual photographs…