Richard Kyanka, better-known as Lowtax, died yesterday at 45. Kyanka was the founder and longtime operator of Something Awful, the sprawling web forum from which much web culture emerged. The news was announced there in a thread that quickly grew to hundreds of pages of bullshit before being summarily locked by admins—the perfect tribute.
The Something Awful forums spawned a great many thanks in its multiple decades of existence. Some things horrible and unfortunate, many things just unintelligible and a huge waste of time. But ultimately, Rich created a community where interesting things happen and people connected.
Kyanka sold the site in 2020 amid a divorce battle in which he was accused of assaulting his second wife — "the specifics, in great detail, played out on the Something Awful forums", reports Brian Ashcraft — and leaves three daughters.
Eulogies are pouring in, most of them scalding. Spike Trotman's is the most accurate and succinct: "incredible how much of the modern internet owes itself to Something Awful, and how little he had to do with any of that."