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Pop Culture

Man shares the 'one sound in the entire world' that separates everyone born before and after 1998

You'll have a visceral reaction or feel nothing.

glass sniper, 1990s internet, aol

The Glass Sniper is taking people back to 1998.

A popular TikToker known as The Glass Sniper is going viral with a video that struck a chord with people who remember the early days of the internet.

In the video, he teases a specific sound that was everywhere before it suddenly disappeared into the collective memory of those born before the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal hit the news.

“There is only one sound in this entire world that will forever separate the old generation from the new one,” Glass Sniper in the viral video. “'For when the new generation hears it, they'll have no idea what we're talking about. But when the old generation hears it… We cringe!”


The sound, of course, is the squeak of a dial-up modem connecting with an Internet service provider or ISP, as they were known back in the day.

New year. New Generation. What year is the line drawn? Lol

@theglasssniper

New year. New Generation. What year is the line drawn? Lol

One of the biggest problems with dial-up internet was that if you were online, no one in your home could use the phone, which caused some big domestic problems. Also, if you used a long-distance phone number for your dial-up number, you could be in for a hefty phone bill.

"I can hear my mom yelling 'IM ON THE PHONE!'" — MacksMom1990 wrote in the comments. "Followed by...You've got mail," DawnMichel added.

"I can already hear my sister yelling at me to get off the computer so she can call her friend," Uncle B wrote.

Although they’re uncommon, people still use dial-up modems in 2023. For some comparison, in 2002, 55 million people in the U.S. used dial-up internet but that number quickly dropped to 51 million in 2003. As of September 2023, 400,000 people in the U.S. still have dial-up internet.

@geaux75/TikTok

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