'Vile' Titanic submarine memes show social media at its worst

'Vile' Titanic submarine memes show social media at its worst
Missing Titanic tourist sub has 'about 40 hours' of oxygen left, says …

Every now and then, there’s an element of online discourse that reminds you how much of a cesspit social media is.

The search for the OceanGate Expeditions submarine is one of them.

Ever since a craft containing five people went missing on a journey to observe the wreckage of the Titanic on Sunday, our timelines have been full of people making light of the situation - they must be seeing a very different news story to the one we're seeing.

The Titan submersible is equipped with a four-day emergency oxygen supply. It is estimated that the five missing passengers have just 24 hours of oxygen supply left inside the vessel.

A Canadian aircraft searching for the missing Titan submarine detected intermittent “banging” noises from the vicinity of the last known location of the divers, and the search continues. It’s the deepest undersea rescue operation in history covering some 10,000 square miles of ocean and the sheer scale of the operation is hard to grasp.

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As families wait anxiously to hear details of the rescue mission, social media users across the world have been joking about the situation; sharing memes about which nostalgic games controller they’d choose to steer the craft, and showing contempt for the gravest of situations.

An OceanGate craft much like the one missing in the mid-AtlanticCBS

The people trapped in the 6.5 metre sub somewhere in the mid-Atlantic ocean were revealed to include British billionaire explorer Hamish Harding, renowned French diver Paul-Henri Nargeolet, and OceanGate founder Stockton Rush, along with Surrey-based businessman Shahzada Dawood and his son Sulaiman Dawood.

Friends of the people trapped on board have also speculated that those on the vessel could currently be dealing with hypothermia if the vessel has lost power.

Many have been highlighting the material wealth of those on board on social media, as if somehow the fact that there are billionaires on board who spent £250,000 to head on the expedition in the first place justifies the ridicule and indifference to human life.

It’s social media at its grimmest, and if Elon Musk’s deranged tinkering hadn’t already, seeing the lack of empathy for an unimaginably terrifying situation play out on Twitter, with so many gleefully giggling away at the horror of it all, I’m starting to think I wouldn’t mind seeing the back of the whole wretched platform forever.

There are plenty of people on Twitter who have recognised such, and voiced their anger at the ghoulish reactions they’ve been seeing online.

One wrote: “The tweets joking about the missing #OceanGate sub make me physically ill. These are real people you are mocking. Their wealth is immaterial. Have some effing compassion.”

“idk man i know we hate rich people but i think if you’re laughing at the idea of any non-evil person dying perhaps the most nightmarish death imaginable, it may be time to log off for a little,” a Twitter user said.

Another said: “Two of the people on the Titanic submarine are a father and his teenage son. His wife and daughter are back home absolutely terrified. Sorry to be a buzzkill guys but maybe we shouldn’t joke about it or make fun of these people for how they spent their money, they are real humans.”

A user commented: “The entire online discussion surrounding the OceanGate submarine is an indictment on the vile nature of social media.

“Five people are either dead or starving of oxygen (imagine the terror) and Twitter is awash with jokes/hot takes about them.


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