This week, 4chan's 22-year-old founder, Christopher Poole (AKA "Moot"), held an extensive Q&A with users of the anarchic site's /b/ messageboard. The discussion ranged from technical details, to the rewards of fame, to sex. Lots of sex.
Poole, who launched 4chan when he was still in high school, doesn't give many interviews to the press. He seems more-or-less indifferent to the blogosphere and its obsession with the unruly horde that lives on his site, the largest Internet forum in the U.S. But he does have a complicated relationship with 4chan's anonymous users, who alternately worship and despise him. He'll occasionally hold a Q&A on 4chan's /b/ board, which quickly fills up with thousands of questions, curses, and gross pictures.
On Monday, Moot held one of these impromptu chats. He offered up no information on his new start-up, Canvas Networks, for which he recently raised $625,000 dollars in funding, but it's still a fun read. The resulting transcript has a Lord of the Flies feel—probably inevitable for a conversation between a bunch of 15 year-olds and their 22-year-old overlord.
Here's Monday's chat between Moot and the anonymous users of 4chan, condensed and edited for readability: [You can see the whole thread here. Warning: It's very long and extremely NSFW.]
4chan: Fuck you m00t. Suck my dick. Been here 5 years, and 4chan has gotten so gay, and you just sit their in your fucking computer cabinet shit. Fucking asshole
Moot: Feel free to leave anytime.
What's your favorite pasta dish?
Penne a la vodka.
How the fuck do you afford this shit?
We break even on ads.
Does the server host know/understand 4chan, or do they think it's another one of those weird internet sites for assholes.
They know/we have a great relationship.
Moot, I notice you're not overly warm and friendly here. Quite the contrary, actually.
These threads wear me down pretty quickly. Wading through "lol fag" and "post cp!!!" gets old fast.
Do you hate all of the /b/tards?
/b/. I don't hate anyone. Sometimes I wish I could interact with the community in a more normal way, though.
Fuck Moot, is there anything wrong with you? You seem WAY too fucking normal… like too much. Tell me something that is NOT normal about you for once.
A journalist asked this to my father. He spent a day with me and interviewing my friends/colleagues and didn't understand how I could be the one that created 4chan, and as he put it "couldn't understand how to fit the square peg into a round hole." The best way I have of describing it is, "I didn't define it, and it doesn't define me."
4chan is a framework of pictures and text. I've always been extremely hands-off with dictating what gets posted, past general categories and rules. I support providing a place to discuss anything, although I don't agree with everything that's posted.
Thank you for the awesome site. You give us something that on one else can—freedom from social convention and complete freedom to speak our minds without fear of consequences.
I recently joined the United States Marine Corps and I ship off to basic training in a couple months. Any advice?
Try not to get shot.
Do you plan on writing a book? It would be a best-seller for sure… as these threads can attest to how interested people are in you.
I've turned down a handful of offers. Maybe when I have something worth writing about.
Did you really get married? I remember a thread about it a few months back.
Haha WHAT? I'm not nor have I ever been married.
Are you gay?
No, but I'm probably one of the least girl-crazy guys on the planet.
Probably cause you fap every day. That happens to me too. When I fap everyday I just don't give a shit about girls.
Would you ever get in a relationship with a female /b/ user? Just curious.
Sure, if they were smart/pretty/normal
Yes, I have hope then!
Have you ever taken advantage of the fact that there's probably like 10,000 female /b/ users spread around the country who would be willing to fuck your brains out?
No, and you guys seriously overestimate how many girls/4channers are genuinely interested in me.
Yeah, but you must realize that if you wanted to you could probably get laid about once a week on just the fact that you are moot. (I would suck your dick.)
Luckily I don't.
Moot hates chubbies, he even said it.
I don't hate them, it's just not my type.
What is your stand on child porn?
Disgusting/highly illegal and I can't believe you people treat it as a joke.
You're a fucking sellout, I seriously hope you go die.
Because breaking even and refusing to rape a site with popup/popunder/popover/hover/flash/sound ads/etc is "selling out," am I right
You would testify against any of us in court. I mean, child porn is one thing, but hacking some hack politician's email is another. Those IP addresses could have been made to "disappear" if you wanted them to.*
Sorry, but I'm not going to jail for someone who broke the law. We comply with all valid subpoenas and search warrants, as required to do so by law.
I would honestly sleep with you. I like how you handle yourself in public and with the press. Makes me think you'd be dominant in bed. Unless you were submissive, then it'd ruin it for me. Tell us fems how you like it.
Consensual and in the missionary position.
I have a gun to your head, my intent is to kill you. What are you going to say in order for me to spare your life?
Don't taze me bro.
Moot: Make my life goal come true by replying to this.
[Image via Wikipedia]