Cringe Culture refers to the online practice of booing fanart and bullying creators online, while retaining one’s relative anonymity and feeling good about oneself for preying on the weaker.
It is especially targeting the posts of children, the LGBT community, people with mental or other disabilities.
Origin of the term
The whole cringe culture movement evolved from the r/cringe section of Reddit, which was established in September 10th, 2009.
This was preceded by the increasingly intolerant and hostile atmosphere, one encountered on 4chan prior to 2009.
While the subreddit was supposed to be filled with empathy toward people, who were the subjects of posts, it certainly didn’t go as planned, with the subreddit turning into a haven for bullies and shamers.
Spread of the term
“Cringe culture” had spread further on the web, from YouTube cringe compilations to “flop” pages on Instagram, that post all sorts of content, with the intention of being mocked heavily.
Urban Dictionary has definitions on the subject, since 2018, when people started discussing the “cringe culture” more seriously, in response to the safespace and other similar movements.