This is kind of depressing: KT Nelson trawled through QAnon facebook groups to get a feel for what kind of people go for it. And the answer is…old, gullible people who have totally alienated themselves from their families with their obsessive crank theorizing.
As you probably noticed from the examples I have provided, the Q crew is made up of a very specific archetype of internet denizen: elderly right-wingers who have gone too far down the online rabbit hole. Diving into any given thread you’d be lucky to find someone whose age drops below 55—but you will encounter one of the most unnerving melanges of psychotic ramblings and hateful screeds available anywhere. Calls for sanity are met with accusations of “controlled opposition,” and the only theories that are criticized are ones that question if the group has gone too far. But more importantly, almost every single member of Q’s following seems to have one glaring and unifying trait: They are deeply, heartbreakingly lonely.
Yikes. The pain and suffering inflicted on the people who adore Trump almost makes me feels some sympathy for them.
Wait…over 55? But that’s not that old, I’m over 55.
It gets worse.
Theories about Q’s endgame abound, but after watching closely for several months now, I think the odds are in favor of Q being an elaborate troll, aimed directly at one of the most gullible demographics in the world—old people on Facebook. A recent study found that people over 65 were several times more likely to share “fake news” online than young folks were, and nobody loves sharing a hot bowl of bullshit more than QAnon adherents. I thought early on that as more and more Q predictions did not come to pass, the following would dwindle, but these incredibly online grandparents have seemingly endless capacity for dissembling, and can conspiracy-brain themselves out of almost any corner.
Old people on Facebook? I’m on Facebook!
I was talking to my daughter the other day, and she informed me that the only people still using Facebook are old boring people, which is why she doesn’t use it much. I asked her what the young exciting people were using nowadays, and she hesitated — like she didn’t want to encourage some old gomer to discover the haunts of beautiful young people, and ruin them — and reluctantly admitted that some of them were using Instagram, but I think she might be hiding something. I have a conspiracy theory about that, and clearly Zuckerberg is in trouble.
At least I haven’t alienated my family…yet. Or they aren’t telling me.