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Old 09-23-2018, 04:57 PM   #1
Astromancer
 
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Default Urban Legends for THS

Toxic Memes had many of these. I contributed Cabalistic Space Travel and Genomic Invasion. This thread is about adding new urban legends to THS. These are things that become the stories. Some are believed like conspiracy theories are believed, others are just fun stories to tell like most people's view of Bigfoot. Others, like ghosts in our world, are between belief and story.

Try this one.

Accidental Ghosting

This Urban Myth says that years of using VR and other similar interfaces can create a weak low res ghost (as in computer ghost) in someone's home. These things can act like ghosts in old stories because they don't know they're not real and are too mentally limited to learn their limited nature.

This is just another form of Ghost Story with a new type of haunting. Some people think it's fun, scientists say it's garbage, screenwriters overuse the trope/meme, and most people like a good story.

Several romantic comedies have someone meet the "ghost" someone left behind and then fall in love with the real person who accidentally made the ghost.

Your turn.
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Last edited by Astromancer; 09-24-2018 at 01:56 PM.
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Old 09-24-2018, 05:18 AM   #2
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Default Re: Urban Legends for THS

Memetics is older than we think

Everyone knows the idea of memetics is quite old, but we think the practical art started with LOGOS' work in 2078. When you look at the stuff that appeared on the old-style Internet in the early 2000s and 2010s, lots of it is so dumb that nobody can have been posting it for fun, or been interested in reading it. YouTube comments must have been a memetic campaign trying to tell people that breaching copyright was something that only stupid people did and stupider people used.
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Old 09-24-2018, 03:28 PM   #3
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Default Re: Urban Legends for THS

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Originally Posted by johndallman View Post
Memetics is older than we think

Everyone knows the idea of memetics is quite old, but we think the practical art started with LOGOS' work in 2078. When you look at the stuff that appeared on the old-style Internet in the early 2000s and 2010s, lots of it is so dumb that nobody can have been posting it for fun, or been interested in reading it. YouTube comments must have been a memetic campaign trying to tell people that breaching copyright was something that only stupid people did and stupider people used.
Good one. Great for Occult conspiracies.
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Old 09-24-2018, 03:37 PM   #4
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Good one. Great for Occult conspiracies.
Based on something I said during a THS game, actually.
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Old 09-28-2018, 11:02 AM   #5
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Default Re: Urban Legends for THS

Real Aliens have Invaded the Internet!

This started as a conspiracy meme. Simply put, the CIA or other similar agency is in contact with aliens and allows the aliens access to the internets in order to spy on humanity. Weird encounters on the internets are really alien psychology experiments to analyze the limits of the human mind. Once the aliens understand us well enough, they will be able to use memetic to have us conquer ourselves!

The authorities call this baloney, Hollywood screenwriters have, as usual, used it as the plot of a horror movie.
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Old 09-28-2018, 01:12 PM   #6
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Real Aliens have Invaded the Internet!
There's proof! Mars Web is updating from Earth Web faster than light. To use the Internets, the aliens would need computers that talked the right protocols. So Earth Web data is leaking through their systems and arriving on Mars before it could have got there at the speed of light.
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Old 10-02-2018, 04:02 PM   #7
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AIs with Deadmen's Missions

In some ways, this is the idea of the Bureaucratic Snafu simply getting outrageously worse. This Urban Legend does have elements of a ghost story but highly rationalized.

The basic premise is that certain AIs were given assignments by now dead bureaucrats. These assignments may have once been logical or useful but now they are long out of date and a problem. However, since the AIs in question lack free will to change their missions and those whose authority they recognize are long dead, these AIs keep trying to do their jobs. This can have consequences from silly to fatal.

One horror film has used the idea of a broken AI as the monster. However, this meme is mainly a "the gunment can't do anything right" example. There are examples of people trying to cover up murders by making it look like a broken AI did it. If anybody got away with doing that sort of thing, how would you know?
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Old 10-04-2018, 07:02 AM   #8
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Default Re: Urban Legends for THS

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One horror film has used the idea of a broken AI as the monster. However, this meme is mainly a "the gunment can't do anything right" example. There are examples of people trying to cover up murders by making it look like a broken AI did it. If anybody got away with doing that sort of thing, how would you know?
See also the first episode of Star Cops, where the pressure suit failure rate has been constant for years… because it's a really handy way of murdering people, but to keep the rate on a straight line you have to keep murdering people even when you don't have a use for their deaths.

There's also "the AIs are secretly controlling everything, and we are their pets" (to which the standard reply is "how could you tell") but that's really more conspiracy theory than urban legend.

I can see support for "we're in a simulation" taking the form of going to a really unpopulated place, doing a really complicated thing, and looking for errors. If it doesn't happen, "they must have patched that bug".
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Old 10-04-2018, 02:25 PM   #9
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Default Re: Urban Legends for THS

This sounds a lot like, "The U Files". Back when I ran a "BlackOps in Space" game, an NPC team member who was a holo-romance writer in her civilian ID also had a pen-name she used to write mysteries set in the lawless corporate settlements and solved by a Mary Sue auditor and her husband-by-contract microbe engineer.

The monsters-are-real vibe was turned way down to Weird Menace level in the mysteries so that impossible animal bites became an attempt to disguise fatal accidents, grey-human hybrids became black lab stem cell experiments, etc. The team recognized some of their BS fast-talk stories being re-used as part of The Company's efforts to discredit witnesses as repeating urban legends.

There was some discussion about which of them was the model for the engineer, but it turned out Toshi was based on the writer's college friend
who had agreed to marry and share the relocation if either of them scored an off-planet position; he was killed by the black labbers who made it look like an airlock failure that trapped him until he suffocated. She didn't twig until the black labbers gloated about it before the fatal injection, only she survived to be recruited.
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Old 10-04-2018, 05:13 PM   #10
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Jeff's post made me think about another source of Urban Legends. Traditional supernatural beings are still widely believed in many areas. In THS, with Bioroids, Parahumans, Bioshells, and other weirdness, many people would hold that Vampires, Aliens, and other weirdness as well, could never pass as human, but could easily pass as near humans. So a billionaire says that he had his brain removed from his unhealthy deformed body and placed in a sexy handsome bioroid. "WE KNOW" that he's really a Satanic warlock that stole a healthy young body.

You don't have to go all Scooby-Doo to blend con games and the supernatural.
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