Last week, John Mellencamp was quoted by Reuters as saying, "the Internet is the most dangerous invention since the atomic bomb." His argument was two fold, beginning with the destruction of sound quality courtesy of MP3 compression (perhaps, but who the hell has an ear that even notices?) and, more important, he insisted, the Internet has killed the music business.
And while, yes, the Internet has definitely helped reshape the industry, perhaps even killing the "business" aspect of it, it certainly hasn't killed creativity or ingenuity. Regardless, asserting that it's the the most dangerous invention since the atomic bomb, well, that's sort of hyperbolic, kind of like proclaiming that the internet is over. With that in mind, we popped open some history books to see if we could find a few things that are more perilous.
5. The AK-47
This weapon was introduced in 1949 and has since become the go-to firearm for smuggling. The AK-45 has been used in countless civil wars across countless countries and has killed an absurdly high amount of people in the process. It's also popular in music (see above clip). Of course, we're guessing Mellencamp would probably say that rap music is destroying the industry, too.
We're pretty sure that cigarettes have killed more people than the Internet, either by causing cancer or, uh, burning down homes. They're also one of those things so ingrained in rock music that you can't help but ponder the correlation between the two.
3. The Large Hadron Collider
If Back to the Future taught us anything, it's that time-travel is dangerous. So are black holes, for that matter -- and since we have no damn clue what might happen with the Large Hadron Collider, it is potentially one of the most dangerous things we've ever invented. Even if it "just" uncovers the mysteries of the universe, it could have the potential of destroying civilization.
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Regardless of how you feel about global warming, we're pretty sure that having a hole in anything other than a donut is a bad idea. Considering CFCs caused a gaping hole in the ozone, we're certain that it has potential to do more damage than the Internet in the long term.
1. Agent Orange
Agent Orange is responsible for a ridiculous amount of deaths and defects, and while the Internet might make it hard to make money if you're on a major label, we're pretty certain that folks in Vietnam would argue this is far more dangerous.