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Reddit cakegate proved how skewed discourse is on the internet

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Something interesting happens when a post from one social site makes it to another—you see completely different responses to the post. That was the case when a Reddit post went viral on X (Twitter) this week. The post originated from a subreddit that askes “Am I the Asshole?”—not the original subreddit, but an offshoot of it. 

AITA posts are regularly shared beyond Reddit—and that’s because they are often divisive. On some posts, redditors almost unanimously agree that a poster is an AH. Others draw mixed responses. The “chocolate cake with vanilla icing” post from this week fell into the latter category. People believed that a 34-year-old man was in the right to tell his girlfriend that the birthday cake she made for him wasn’t exactly what he wanted—an all-chocolate cake instead of a chocolate cake with a layer of vanilla icing. Others, mainly redditors, thought the girlfriend was in the right to be upset

Once the post hit TikTok, the discourse spiraled out of control. One TikToker, @sweetpea.osrs, made a video that was over six minutes long discussing the cakegate. “I’m on the boyfriend’s side,” she announces at the start of the video. She compared the girlfriend deciding to add a layer of vanilla icing in an otherwise all-chocolate cake to sexual coercion. 

Commenters on the TikTok video agreed. “I can’t STAND when people ask me specifically what I want or I tell them explicitly what I want and they get me the complete opposite!” one person wrote. 

On X, however, the response to the video was different. “You have lost your fucking minds,” one person wrote

Why it matters

Seeing a post receive wildly different responses on different sites is now a regular occurrence. That’s why the response you see to a viral social post is often skewed. It might seem like everyone is mocking someone until you see how that post is discussed on another site. 

The chocolate cake post is a perfect example of how people respond differently on different social sites. As for the boyfriend, he is using the internet’s divided opinions to try and ask for an apology from his girlfriend. “After looking at the comments, I’ve apologized to my girlfriend for being the partial asshole but also asked her for an apology as well because it looked like the results were about 50/50 on whether I was or wasn’t, at least when I skimmed them,” he wrote in an update on his post.

No word if the girlfriend has seen all the drama about her creation.

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