Vakkotaur (vakkotaur) wrote,

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The Secrecy Problem: Telephone Game, Only Worse.

A few days ago I posted a link to a list of questions used in that "30 Questions" thing that's been going around LJ (and, I assume, other places) for a while. Last night someone pointed out another link to the questions. The interesting thing is a comment on that posting, pointing out that some questions had changed.

Did you get this one, which seems fairly innocuous:

05. Someone who seems easy to talk to.
21. Someone who you are grateful to.
22. Someone who makes you laugh.

Or this one, which implies different, not necessarily pleasant, things:

05. Someone who seems like a chatterbox.
21. Someone S-type.
22. Someone M-type.

And if you got one and someone else used the other, you wound up using the wrong key to decode the answers. The transmission was garbled, or rather, interfered with. That's at least two versions of the list. How many versions are there?

Since it's trivially easy to just copy and paste, this isn't just a transmission-reception or mis-hearing-mis-remembering-mis-speaking error as happens in the Telephone Game. This was deliberate. Someone decided to make things more revealing, perhaps more dramatic. And as long as the general secrecy was maintained, there was no way to verify that the set of questions or descriptors you had was identical to the list someone else had worked from.

As aiglet said in a comment:

At least one person I know seems to think of it as an experiment in information-spreading, which tells me that this person has probably never had an entire social group implode under the weight of "he said she said you said that I said that X was a bitch" or "I heard that so-and-so is a horrible person so I'm not going to be friends with them even though I can't remember who I heard it from or what it was exactly that was said" type drama.

I do wonder who (person or group) started this thing. Or at least who modified it. It has a certain familiar, and bad, odor to it. And I don't mean just the obnoxious chain-letter style of the thing. It smells of troll.

Tags: bad behavior, bait & switch, psa, trolls
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