438: Internet Argument

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Internet Argument
It's easier to be an asshole to words than to people.
Title text: It's easier to be an asshole to words than to people.


This effect is similar to what happens when people drive a car: they're more likely to get exasperated or angry at other drivers than they do when not driving.

In the first two panels, Cueball is exchanging some possibly profane insults with the other Cueball. Megan takes hold of Cueball and flies him to the other one, so they see each other face to face. In this situation, each remains silent as neither has anything to say to the other.

When Megan returns Cueball to his original computer, they resume their communication, but without the insults.

The title text just summarizes the whole idea in a single sentence.


[Cueball is typing profanities into his computer.]
[Friend is typing profanities into his computer.]
[Megan floats in behind Cueball.]
[Megan lifts Cueball.]
[They are flying over mountains.]
[Megan and Cueball are floating in front of the friend and his computer.]
[She sets Cueball down in front of the friend and his computer.]
[Megan lifts Cueball again.]
[They are flying.]
[Megan sets Cueball down in his chair at his computer.]
[Cueball is typing at his computer.]
[Friend is typing at his computer.]

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Last ever CRT monitor? 20:52, 15 August 2013 (UTC)

Yeah, I did try to start a category here, but it was deleted by an admin here.--Dgbrt (talk) 21:11, 26 August 2013 (UTC)
Well, yes. He is using Linux. The beauty of linux: you don't need to buy the newest and the most expensive computers just so you can run the programs you want. *cough cough* Windows 10 *cough* Ubuntu 16.10 user *cough cough* -- User:JayRulesXKCD (talk) 7:58, 9 September 2016
There is a CRT monitor in 1305 03:34, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

An explain on trolling is missing. Cueball is a Troll.--Dgbrt (talk) 21:11, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

I've written a (hopefully) complete explanation, and removed the incomplete tag. I included an explanation for trolls, however I don't think this comic is about trolling. I think it's about how people who is friendly in daily life can be much harsher when there's not a face to be friendly to, but only a block of text. 04:07, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

[Note to self: think of a trolling comment and return to enter it here] -- Brettpeirce (talk) 19:12, 4 November 2014 (UTC)

No apparent reference to trolls in the comic. Not even one. The two Cueballs are exact mirrors of each other. How is one a troll? Also, not sure why there is a very specific explanation regarding people who troll cancer forums... This definitely needs to be fixed.--flewk (talk) 17:40, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

Seconded. Both parties at the computers are upset, which suggests they're just arguing and at least one is being an asshole out of anger rather than trolling to get a rise out of the other. That said, I'm not sure how to fix it either unless it's satisfactory to simply copy what I just said...--Isaacslaughing (talk) 04:18, 15 December 2017 (UTC)