Five of the web’s oddest communities

For a while, one of the UK’s free morning newspapers – Metro – ran a column named The Ridiculant. Its tagline was “things we found down the back of the internet”.

Because it’s down there – right down there, if you stretch a bit – where you can find some of the most intriguing, compelling and downright bizarre corners of the web.

Places where people all over the world gather for the most pointless of reasons, yet feel some reward from it.

The BBC decided to stick its hand down the back of the internet to see what it could find. The results, in no particular order, and for no particular reason, can be found below…

Please note: Due to our policy on linking to sites that may contain offensive language beyond the BBC’s control, you may have to find your own way to some of the communities here via your favourite search engine.

Carpets for Airports

Singapore is famous for many things, but did you know its airport is also home to “one of the most psychologically terrifying carpets in the world”?

Counting

For some reason, almost 5,000 people are part of Counting, one of Reddit’s many ‘subreddits’ (that’s the name given to individual sections on the site which anyone can create).

Thomas the Dank Engine

Here’s rapper Eminem as Thomas the Tank Engine

Ice chewers

And if you thought ice was simply frozen water, think again – the site’s users share tips on recipes. Put a pinch of yoghurt inside the tray, suggests one person, and freeze it for about three to four hours. “Trust me guys its unreal!”

Birds with Arms

Birds with Arms started out as an image-manipulation challenge posed way back in 2008, but now boasts a Reddit community of more than 60,000 people.

So, don’t ever think your blog may be too esoteric, too personal or impersonal, too weird to attract a following. While the numbers for my personal blog are perfectly manageable – in part because of arguments I lost with both WordPress and Google – the same sort of posts have regularly appeared in the past at sites with eyeball numbers running at 5 million views a week.

I’m satisfied with what I have here – and the folks who drop by are the best. Mostly.