By the early 80s, kids were already trawling the message boards of the Internet for perverse kicks. Well before Star Ways Kid or "flash mobs," one of the first online fads was the "Purity Test," a series of questions to rate your moral purity, from the raunchy ("Ever had sex in your parents' bedroom?") to the absurd ("Ever snorted cocaine off the dashboard of a car doing 80 mph?").
The tests would be printed out, brought to school, and pored over with friends in the back of the gym during recess. Then kids would modify the original with their own prurient additions before sending it along. Eventually, the tests became bloated thousand-question Franken-tests that took hours to complete.
Doing the test with friends was like playing an endless, filthy, wildly enlightening game of "Did You Ever?"--and because it was a standardized test, you could compare your scores. Assuming everyone was being honest--which they weren't.
The Purity Test will offer both a humorous history and analysis of the Purity Test as well as several versions of the test to take at home.