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“Involuntary Abstinence” is a concept of Internet humor that is typically iterated in image macros poking fun at male-oriented hobbies that may be deemed unattractive by the other sex, such as LARPing, cosplaying and video game collecting among others. While some instances appear to be used as a form of self-parody, others can be seen as examples of virgin-shaming.
On August 12th, 2005, the American television network G4TV released a satirical commercial for the online role-playing game World of Warcraft in which a woman introduces the game to her boyfriend in order to prevent him from pressuring her to have sex.
In March of 2008, a demotivational poster was posted to the Internet humor site Ebaumsworld by user Ballentine with the World of Warcraft logo accompanied by the caption “World of Warcraft / keeping abstinence alive since 2004.”
On July 9th, 2008, the single topic blog Unmotivational Posters posted another World of Warcraft demotivational poster with the caption “Abstinence programs / $15 per month is a small price to pay to keep your son’s virginity” (shown left). On March 1st, 2009, Urban Dictionary user someone148615 submitted a definition for “W.O.W.”, an acronym for World of Warcraft, which defined the term as “an abstinence program.” On November 23rd, 2010, the Internet humor site Memebase published a post titled “That’s the Only Peek-at You’ll Ever Get”, which featured a photo of a man hugging a Pikachu Pokemon stuffed animal with the caption “Virginity / I choose you” (shown right).
On January 12th, 2012, a post titled “Virginity level ∞” reached the front page of the /r/funny subreddit with an image macro of a man dressed in cardboard armor captioned with “This is how I protect my virginity” (shown left). The post sparked a debate in the comments over the ethics of virgin-shaming. On February 23rd, 2012, the Memebase site Very Demotivational posted a photo of a teenager dressed in various Nintendo game accessories with the caption “Virginity / He’s ready to protect his at all costs” (shown right).