This Place Is Not a Place of Honor meme depicting a pictographic representation of the dangers of nuclear waste.

This Place Is Not a Place of Honor

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Updated Sep 06, 2021 at 10:55AM EDT by Adam B..

Added Sep 01, 2021 at 11:19AM EDT by Adam B..

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About

This Place Is Not a Place of Honor, otherwise known as Long-Time Nuclear Waste Warning Message or Radiation Warning Copypasta, is a message intended to warn future cultures about radioactive nuclear waste that will remain dangerous to humans for thousands of years. The message was written in 1992 and became a copypasta in the late 2010s with the simple and serious language of the message being used to comedic effect.

Origin

The original message referenced in the meme was written in April 1992 as part of a report for Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico,[1] which was an interdisciplinary study on how to protect people from the hazardous effects of nuclear waste for thousands of years, as cultures and languages changed but the radiation remained dangerous.

They proposed that nuclear waste sites be designed to communicate messages without language, but wrote the message as an example of what the design would communicate (excerpt shown below).

This place is not a place of honor…no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here…nothing valued is here.


This place is a message…and part of a system of messages…pay attention to it!

Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be powerful culture.

This place is not a place of honor…no highly esteemed deed is commemorated here…nothing valued is here.

What is here was dangerous and repulsive to us. This message is a warning about danger.

The danger is in a particular location…it increases towards a center…the center of danger is here…of a particular size and shape, and below us.

The danger is still present, in your time, as it was in ours.

The danger is to the body, and it can kill.

The form of the danger is an emanation of energy.

The danger is unleashed only if you substantially disturb this place physically. This place is best shunned and left uninhabited.


In addition to the message, the authors of the Sandia report also provided multiple examples of pictographic warnings (seen below), which are occasionally associated with the meme.


0,66 КM 0,66 KM RE2OSTORY 0.66 KM :0.66KM REPOSITORY REPOSIORY DANGER, POISONOUS RADIOACTIVE WASTE HERE DO NOT DIG OR DRILL

The earliest recorded use of the message for comic effect was by Twitter[2] user steve_lieber, who tweeted "Working out pictorial message system to warn future visitors to Periscope Studio that 'This is not a place of honor,'" on May 23rd, 2012 (shown below).


Steve Lieber @steve_lieber Working out pictorial message system to warn future visitors to Periscope Studio that "This is not a place of honor." 9:51 PM · May 23, 2012 · Twitter for iPhone 1 Retweet 2 Likes

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In November 2014, the message gained attention after an article in Method Quarterly[3] by Sarah Zhang, which covered the message and other methods of warning future cultures about the danger of nuclear waste.

The message became gradually more widespread online in the late 2010s. On September 23rd, 2019, Tumblr[4] user exeggcute posted about a wall-hanging displaying the message. The post received over 11,000 notes over two years, and multiple variations of the wall hanging (seen below) are now available for sale.


In this house this is not a place of honor No highlyesteemed deed is commemoral ed here. Eaothing is valbed here hat io here bo DANGEROUS AND REPULSIVE The dangér is in a The danger is still particular location Ts place s best left present in your time Shunned & U(ninhabited

On February 27th, 2020, the Tumblr[5] account nuclearwastewarnings made its first post. Inspired by exeggcute's post, the gimmick account writes the messages in various artistic Adobe Spark templates (examples seen below).


The danger is to the body and it can kill. The form of the danger is an emanation O of energy. PROBLEMATIC NUCLEAR WASTE WARNINGS List of problematic NWW (or LTNWWM). Not promoting cancel culture or anything, just letting people know. Updated WEEKLY. Don't interact, just REPORT. Click for the reasons why something is problematic This place is a message We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture This place is not a place of honor Nothing valued is here What is here was dangerous and repulsive to us The center of danger is here The danger is still present It can kil Emanation of energy This place is best shunned and left uninhabited

Throughout 2020 and 2021, as the meme became more widely known and used, it was noted by multiple people, including Twitter[6] user prophet_goddess (shown below), that the messages were now altered forever by becoming a meme.


ludum tsundare .. @prophet_goddess the long-term nuclear waste warning messages becoming a meme is really funny to me because no nuclear semiotician ever thought to consider preserving nuclear waste warning messages for future generations by just getting people to make jokes about them 12:30 AM · Dec 24, 2020 · TweetDeck

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Top Comments

adosta
adosta

Wow, the origin of this meme is quite interesting, there are also ideas on how to design eerie structures or signs that deter people from the dangerous of radiactive material without using current simbology.

+19
Sir Trollsalot
Sir Trollsalot

Trying to warn hypothetical post-apocalyptic savages of radiation danger reminds me of that incident in Brazil where someone stole radioactive material from abandoned hospital and tried to sell off the cool glowy stuff, irradiating lots of people.
Yep, radiation warnings don't even work with modern people (granted, it's Brazil so perhaps "modern" is exaggeration).

+15

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