If you follow online debates between the right and left in the US, you may have noticed the NPC meme appearing on accounts and meme's across social networks.
NPC, that means the non-player character, is usually used to refer to characters in computer games that are not controlled by the player, yet it is controlled by the computer and has a predictable behavior.
During the last few months, several memes illustrating NPC have been going viral among the right wing and anti-progressive online movements in the US, mocking progressives as characters who are all identical in their ideas and ideology, as if they are objects or pawns.
It all started around five months ago on the messaging board 4Chan, where the NPC memes originated. The first meme was called the NPC meme and it has a caption that says: “Out there in the world, there are literal NPCs—the term for non-playable characters in video games—who have no internality whatsoever”.
Several users found their joy in it and started sharing it by replacing faces of prominent leftists and Trump critics with the NPC face.
NPC memes are usually used to refer to Trump-haters and prominent American progressive figures, including media outlets and agencies. The NPC theory claim they all usually share the same opinions and positions that are mostly in criticism of Trump or the right wing.
Some might think that NPC term is being used to replace the SJW [Social Justice Warriors], a term that is used to refer to anyone who promotes 'social justice,' a distinct ideology found in parts of the West. It implicates that they are pursuing personal validation rather than any deep-seated collective conviction.
As the NPC meme is becoming more popular now, more progressives came to the front in response to the NPC creators. Some regard it is a dehumanizing reference, which could be a legitimate criticism given the vitriol surrounding both sides of the political debate in the United States.
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