Attention Whore

Attention Whore

Part of a series on Internet Slang. [View Related Entries]

Updated Apr 22, 2014 at 02:40PM EDT by Brad.

Added Jul 10, 2012 at 04:36AM EDT by Triple Zed.

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About

Attention Whore is a pejorative label used to describe someone who solicits attention from others through unnecessary or overbearing means. On the web, the slang term can be used to reprimand attention-seeking messages or behaviors on discussion forums and social networking sites, in similar vein to the use of karma whores.

Origin

The earliest known use of the term “attention whore” can be found on Everything2 Wiki in a discussion thread about the axiom “It’s better to be hated than to be ignored”[1] posted on May 19th, 2000. After a forum member named rue asked what other users thought of the phrase, a user named moJoe claimed he had been called an “attention whore” on the site previously, but would prefer to have his posts ignored than misunderstood. He then went on to prove that he was not an attention whore by providing a story of how he blew off a girl who had attempted to talk to him.



Spread

In January 2001, the “insecure attention whore” was listed as a rock fan cliche on the Straight Dope message board.[2] In July 2001, a member of the alt.y2trolls Usenet group was called out for being an “attention whore”[3] by another poster who pleaded others not to play into her demands. In November 2002, a member of the North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club[4] began a conversation on the difference between an “attention whore” and someone who simply likes to post often. While most posters agreed that the difference mainly depended on the humor and entertainment value of the posts, FunkerVogt distinguished the former by the person’s self-absorbed or pitying tendencies, usually to solicit compliments, sympathy, or recognition. The same year, similar discussions about dating attention-seekers were started on the Honda-Tech forums[6] and the Love-Scent message board.[7] In May 2003, the phrase was defined for the first time on Urban Dictionary[5] and later featured as the Urban Word of the Day on October 19th, 2009.




In 2004, the term was referenced in the action role-playing game Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines as an unlockable quest. Over the course of the next two years, many critical discussions of “attention whores” appeared on male-centric message boards including Bodybuilding.com[9], eBaum’s World[10], Tilted Forum Project[11], The Straight Dope[12] and Godlike Productions.[13] By 2005, some people had begun to self-identify as attention whores, acknowledging that they would go out of their way to seek recognition by falsely playing a female character in an MMORPG[14] or by posting seductive photos of themselves[15] (shown below).



In 2006, an Uncyclopedia entry[16] for the phrase was created. The following year, The Daily Kos[17] posted an article by Cindy Sheehan, a U.S. antiwar activist whose son was killed during the Iraq War, about being called an attention whore after she announced she was taking a break from activism. In 2009, house music producer deadmau5 released a collaborative song with singer/songwriter Melleefresh titled “Attention Whore” (shown below). In 2011, a WordReference forums user started a thread[18] seeking help translating the phrase into French, but no exact translation was found.



In May 2013, Rookie Magazine[19] investigated the judgement and envy that goes into deeming everyone people attention whores, leading to a similar article on Jezebel[20] looking at the covert misogyny that exists in the term, as it is mostly reserved for females who depart from traditional stereotypes. These points were reinforced in a Huffington Post[21] piece about the implications about women typically being labeled attention whores. As of August 2013, attention whore is regularly used on Reddit[22] and 4chan.[23] It can also be found as a hashtag on Tumblr[24], Twitter[25], Facebook[26] and Instagram[27], where it has been used on nearly 55,000 photos.

Notable Examples




Search Interest



External References

[1]everything2 – It’s better to be hated than ignored

[2]Straight Dope – Rock cliches

[3]Google Groups Archive – alt.y2trolls: MONA IS QUEEN ATTENTION WHORE

[4]NASIOCWhat’s the difference between being an attention whore, and just having a lot to say?

[5]Urban Dictionary – Definition for “attention whore”

[6]Honda-Tech – How to spot an Attention WHORE!!!!!

[7]Love-Scent – Battle tactics and ways to deal with “attention whores”

[8]GameBanshee – Vampire: Bloodlines: Attention Whore

[9]Bodybuilding.com – The fine line between alpha male and attention whore

[10]eBaum’s World Forum – Look At Me, Im an Attention Whore

[11]Tilted Forum Project – attention whore – why does it bother me so much?

[12]The Straight Dope – Suicide Post… A Cry For Help, Or Attention Whore

[13]Godlike Productions – How to handle a Attention Whore?

[14]Something Awful – I was an Everquest attention whore

[15]Cannabis.com – So I’m an attention whore..and damn good at it.

[16]Uncyclopedia – Attention Whore

[17]The Daily Kos – “Good Riddance, Attention Whore”

[18]WordReference – attention whore

[19]Rookie – Shameless Women

[20]Jezebel – In Defense of the Attention Whore

[21]Huffington Post – Why We Need To Rethink The ‘Attention Whore’ Label

[22]Reddit – Search Results for “attention whore”

[23]Foolz Archive – Search Results for “attention whore”

[24]Tumblr – Posts tagged #attentionwhore

[25]Twitter – Search Results for #attentionwhore

[26]Facebook – Results for #attentionwhore

[27]Statigram – Photos tagged #attentionwhore

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