609: Tab Explosion

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Tab Explosion
Cracked.com is another inexplicable browser narcotic. They could write a list of '17 worst haircuts in the Ottoman Empire' and I'd still read through to the end, then click on all the links at the end.
Title text: Cracked.com is another inexplicable browser narcotic. They could write a list of '17 worst haircuts in the Ottoman Empire' and I'd still read through to the end, then click on all the links at the end.

Explanation[edit]

TV Tropes is a popular site which allows conversation on tropes. A common joke with the site is how you will read a page, find a certain trope, which will open another tab on your web page. Then, as you read another article, you'll open even more pages. Pretty soon, this will cause an extremely long cycle of opening new pages and closing old ones.

In the comic, this is exactly what happens to our unfortunate victim. He starts on a single page, then opens more and more tabs on different pages. Pretty soon, he finds himself stuck in a loop of opening pages.

The last frame refers to Rickrolling, which is the practice of being linked to Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up" on YouTube.

The title text refers to the comedy site Cracked.com. This site is also known for its addictive articles. Most articles are formatted in the same way the title text notes. Eventually, Cracked itself wrote a column that paid tribute to this cartoon. (See the very last line With that in mind, we present to you the 17 Worst Haircuts in The Ottoman Empire.)

The original comic links to TVtropes' page of Universal tropes. TVtropes has taken notice and has a welcome letter for you at the end of the main article: "Oh, and hello to all you xkcd readers. (And thank you for the information!)" Here the "thank you" link actually links to this page, the "hello" links to the comic on xkcd and the other two links are to two articles on TVTropes, the first about xkcd and the last one being an in-joke about how "TVTropes will ruin your life".

Transcript[edit]

[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Cueball: Huh.
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball stares at the computer.]
Cueball: I never noticed that!
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Cueball: Haha, yeah.
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Cueball: So true.
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball stares at the computer.]
[Cueball stares at the computer.]
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball stares at the computer.]
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Click
[Cueball is sitting at a computer.]
Megan (off-screen): Are you in there?
Cueball: Help!
[Megan walks in behind Cueball who is still sitting at the computer. The bottom of the image is covered in Megan's last line]
Megan: Okay, who linked you to TVTropes? What's with that site?
Cueball: Can't ... stop...
Megan: It's like Rickrolling, but you're trapped all day.


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Discussion

It also has a link, not only to the comic, but also to the explained comic here! Talk about a loop. Anonymous07:20, 4 December 2013 (UTC)

you can't access title-text on mobile devices 173.245.62.75 14:29, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

could someone please poste a link to the cracked.com column that pay tribute to this comic? 141.101.81.222 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

This could be the one that makes some reference: http://www.cracked.com/blog/clippy-finally-messes-with-the-wrong-word-doc/ (the text appears inside) Mercastan (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

To access the title text on mobile devices, hold down the thing you need to see the title text of. Nate 108.162.221.20 (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

You can also go to m.xkcd.com, and tapping on the image or the alt-text link makes the title text appear below the title (for those chrome users who can't see the entire title text by tap-holding). 162.158.74.143 13:20, 24 March 2020 (UTC)

I have that website blocked by an application that blocked websites. The reason is NOT because of what is described in the comic, but it's because I got permabanned from that site back in 2017 for something I did not even know was against the rules, with no prior warnings, and the only appeal option that they gave that they did not consider "ban evasion" was an email address that never replied back to you, even years later, and I don't think they even deserve viewing traffic from people who they have treated so unfairly/punished so harshly like that. 172.70.135.48 01:56, 18 December 2021 (UTC)

Waitwhat? Presuming even that you mean Cracked (not sure what you did to annoy them, it must have been... interesting) and not m.xkcd.com, I'm not sure how they could remain targetted against you, nor how it'svan application. Assuming you're not reinstalling a Child-Safe-style application of your own on every machine you try to access via, and making sure it's using PG-13 limits of some kind.
I doubt they can reliably IP-block you. If I go to edit wikipedia and it refuses because some idiot has previously made a nuisance of themselves under my current dynamic IP, it is trivial (without VPNing or similar) to get a newish IP-of-the-moment that usually lets me do my (non-nuisance) editing.
Even if you stick to a single device then aggressive cookie-style tracking can be 'forgotten' so that you machine isn't traitorously restating your apparent blockability.
...never mind me, it's way too late (GMT) and I'm just far too intrigued by your statement. 162.158.159.19 02:30, 18 December 2021 (UTC)