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[WSJ] A Generation of American Men Give Up on College: ‘I Just Feel Lost’

Cyberpunkd

Member
Their is no shame working at walmart, amazon, uber or whatever as long as you master your own personal finances as stated in my previous post. Getting a degree in something does not necessarily guarantee you getting a job.
The issue here is that for the past generations that was always true, you get a degree, you get a good job, you grow in your role, afford a house and a car. That was also what current late-20s were sold as well. Then one day they finished school and:

Season 7 Oops GIF by Workaholics


So who fucked up here? Because in my opinion adults with experience in a position of power, not teens who do bong parties on the weekend.
 
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nush

Gold Member
The issue here is that for the past generations that was always true, you get a degree, you get a good job, you grow in your role, afford a house and a car. That was also what current late-20s were sold as well. Then one day they finished school and:

Season 7 Oops GIF by Workaholics


So who fucked up here? Because in my opinion adults with experience in a position of power, not teens who do bong parties on the weekend.

Why did you feel the need to bump a 9 month old topic?
 

Jsisto

Member
I didn’t go to college. Started working when I was 18, was good at my job, and just kinda settled into a career with the support of supervisors/bosses who prodded me in the right direction. I’m 35, have no debt, and make nearly 70k, which I’m perfectly happy with. The only thing I’d say I missed out on by skipping college is the social experience.
 

Outlier

Member
I didn’t go to college. Started working when I was 18, was good at my job, and just kinda settled into a career with the support of supervisors/bosses who prodded me in the right direction. I’m 35, have no debt, and make nearly 70k, which I’m perfectly happy with. The only thing I’d say I missed out on by skipping college is the social experience.
You can still do it, but I imagen all the youngster will give you the side eye at the parties. Then again the indebt girls might give you a different kind of look, if that interests you.
 

Lunarorbit

Member
"Social science researchers cite distractions and obstacles to education that weigh more on boys and young men, including videogames, pornography, increased fatherlessness and cases of overdiagnosis of boyhood restlessness and related medications."


Guys if you need your mommy to help get your transcript in then maybe you shouldn't go to college.

I went to school in 2001. Never known my dad, played video games growing up all the time, and loved playboy magazine for obvious reasons. Social scientists are reaching sometimes.

Increased cost, mental health struggles, the devaluation of college degrees, the rise of financial independence from non traditional revenue streams.... These are real issues not fucking video games.

People don't think college is worth it as much. Plus honestly there's a LOT of stupid people in our country who never gave college a thought. By stupid I mean part of it is complete lack of attention span and no desire or willingness to think critically or fact check. These are really important skills to have in college and I think lots of people nowadays wanna be told what to think.
 
Yeah the video game thing is complete bullshit. I played LOTS of video games in my teenage years, and had an exceptionally active social life. Was a straight A+ student in high school, got into top tier reputable colleges. So did a lot of my buddies. And we came from pretty deep in the ghetto -- which I think was a motivator for me to go to college, since it was a sure way to get the fuck out of there.

What additionally helped me a lot was my parents stressing the importance of education and getting a degree that I both liked but would give me a fulfilling career. (At that time, my dad would joke "you can get a history degree, but it may not help pay your bills." Oh if he only knew all the "Gender Studies" stuff that would come down the line 😂...)
 

Bragr

Member
Yeah the video game thing is complete bullshit. I played LOTS of video games in my teenage years, and had an exceptionally active social life. Was a straight A+ student in high school, got into top tier reputable colleges. So did a lot of my buddies. And we came from pretty deep in the ghetto -- which I think was a motivator for me to go to college, since it was a sure way to get the fuck out of there.

What additionally helped me a lot was my parents stressing the importance of education and getting a degree that I both liked but would give me a fulfilling career. (At that time, my dad would joke "you can get a history degree, but it may not help pay your bills." Oh if he only knew all the "Gender Studies" stuff that would come down the line 😂...)
Do you think that your experience with games proves the entire videogame argument wrong for everyone?

Social media, Twitch, games, Youtube, all of this, the amount of students who sit in their dorm obsessed with their PC is massive. If students had no PC whatsoever at school, the whole picture would be different.

I had a big issue with this, I didn't think about it then but in hindsight it's clear. The last year my PC broke so I got a piece of shit one that couldn't play games and sucked using because it was so slow, so I barely did, and the difference between that year and the others were absurd, I was a different person when sitting on the PC wasn't an alternative, I was 10 times more social and did 10 times better at school. Half my class was just sitting on their PC in their free time, it's a dream killer is what it is. Studying sucks dick, and when you have something better to do, you ignore it, but when it's a bit boring and you don't have a PC to waste time on, stuff like studying is so much easier.

Of course, all this comes down to childhood, how you grow up and what sort of routines you develop. That's true for everything.
 
Do you think that your experience with games proves the entire videogame argument wrong for everyone?
It's trying to disprove the narrative that video games are supposedly some generalized big problem that is holding back boys/men en masse in society.

It's a complicated, multi-factor issue, and those that trying to pin it primarily/solely on video games are, indeed, wrong
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
Old thread that got bumped and I write stuff earlier.

It cant be that bad for men as we earn more than women on avg anyway. A lot of guys get a decent blue collar job that can pay well without college/university. Most women cant. They either do the white collar academic role, or they skew poorly to the fast food and check out cashier at stores. A lot less in between. Guys will do anything.

As for any young person who is having issues with a career thats on them to figure out. Cant be that hard. Every other generation seems to know how to pick a career. At worst, mom or dad nag you at the dinner table at some point in high school trying to get your ass to pick something. Follow their footsteps or do something you want. If the parents dont give a shit, and the kid doesn't either, thats on them. If they just want to wing it living day to day hoping a clear path magically knocks on the door, good luck.

You got to put in at least some effort in life.
 

Bragr

Member
It's trying to disprove the narrative that video games are supposedly some generalized big problem that is holding back boys/men en masse in society.

It's a complicated, multi-factor issue, and those that trying to pin it primarily/solely on video games are, indeed, wrong
But it's a part of the digital hook, it might not be the sole part, but it's a part of it.
 
It's trying to disprove the narrative that video games are supposedly some generalized big problem that is holding back boys/men en masse in society.

It's a complicated, multi-factor issue, and those that trying to pin it primarily/solely on video games are, indeed, wrong
If anything video games are an escape for boys who feel/know that the scales are tipped.

Girls are just more suited to a classroom setting to begin with but with society treating men the way they do, esp. academia, this really isn't hard to figure out unless someone has blinders on.
 

Catphish

Gold Member
I won't pretend to know what's driving others but, for me, college is a waste of money. You're saddled with a fuckton of debt to take a bunch of classes that aren't relevant to your major.

It's like the academic version of a cable package or store-bought PC. Paying for a bunch of shit you don't need or want, and will never use.

You could once argue that the college experience was at least beneficial to stimulate independent, critical thought, but those days appear to be over, as radical-leftist thought enforcement pervades the entire industry.

I could see getting a degree if it's an absolute necessity to work in your chosen field. Otherwise, I see no value in it whatsoever.
 
as we earn more than women on avg anyway.
I heard somewhere that for younger millennials and Gen Z college grads, that this is actually no longer true and women make more than men. The time when men still make more than women is when you account for ALL generations.

I haven't been able to independently verify that claim myself, but it would make some sense if young women are graduating at much higher rates than men, and getting associated white collar jobs after college.
 

MastaKiiLA

Member
I have a Master's, but if I had to do it again, I wouldn't go to college/uni. I'd work and try to start my own business instead. College is a huge waste of money, especially in America. There are some fields that require the knowledge learned, but most careers don't need it. Even something like engineering can largely be learned on the job. Both my degrees currently collect dust.
 

p_xavier

Authorized Fister
I spent 18 years in university full time while working full time. It went from usefull in my first years and hard to basically useless degrees. I had started a masters in engineering project management and it was so stupid that's when I said I'm done. To do it again I would do trades to be an electrician.
 
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I didn’t go to college. Started working when I was 18, was good at my job, and just kinda settled into a career with the support of supervisors/bosses who prodded me in the right direction. I’m 35, have no debt, and make nearly 70k, which I’m perfectly happy with. The only thing I’d say I missed out on by skipping college is the social experience.

I think you are in an excellent position in your life. You Go Boyfriend!!! (Suzie Orman Voice)

-Social experience in college is like high school 2.5 or something. It is NOT worth it in my opinion and means nothing. Don't you dare have any regrets on that, be happy and live freely. Make sure you have plenty of savings, and investments and putting your money into good retirement accounts. Consider Roth IRA along with your 401k. Take care of your health, get at least twice a year physician checkup.

And lastly, enjoy playing video games!
 
If I had to do it again I wouldn't go. I would probably just do RV Sales and make a killing over the years in the right Geography. But I didn't know that back then so oh well.
 
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EviLore

Expansive Ellipses
Staff Member
You could once argue that the college experience was at least beneficial to stimulate independent, critical thought, but those days appear to be over, as radical-leftist thought enforcement pervades the entire industry.

I could see getting a degree if it's an absolute necessity to work in your chosen field. Otherwise, I see no value in it whatsoever.
The days of universities promoting critical thought are definitely not over. I haven’t experienced any thought enforcement, and have been treated fairly and respectfully when I’ve pushed back against anything of questionable validity taken for granted as true. While the wrongthink stuff surely does happen at times, and there are general ongoing problems at universities—absurd costs (sometimes for useless degrees), DEI officers interfering with professors, questionable Title IX processes—what gets disseminated on partisan social media and conservative news sources is a handful of the most egregious examples pulled from a pool of thousands of universities. It is not a representative sampling, and it is used to promote an anti-intellectual agenda.
 

Catphish

Gold Member
I haven’t experienced any thought enforcement, and have been treated fairly and respectfully when I’ve pushed back against anything of questionable validity taken for granted as true.
I appreciate the response. Can you elaborate on the snip above?
 
I won't pretend to know what's driving others but, for me, college is a waste of money. You're saddled with a fuckton of debt to take a bunch of classes that aren't relevant to your major.

It's like the academic version of a cable package or store-bought PC. Paying for a bunch of shit you don't need or want, and will never use.

You could once argue that the college experience was at least beneficial to stimulate independent, critical thought, but those days appear to be over, as radical-leftist thought enforcement pervades the entire industry.

I could see getting a degree if it's an absolute necessity to work in your chosen field. Otherwise, I see no value in it whatsoever.

No matter where you go you won't encounter that stuff unless you are taking things like Gender Studies, or other fields that have a laser focus on those topics. Its not a reason to avoid college. 99% of people don't even graze that stuff. Even taking your basic psychology class just goes over the basic stuff. Also say that you are taking Gender Studies, you get taught on all aspects on it, not just the leftist version of it. There aren't radical leftist books out there that individuals exclusively use to learn about woman's studies, the material is much broader than that.

Undergrad is a job prospect machine, and that's about it. It's not used to make the individual smarter outside of the context of preparing individuals to be job ready.
 
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A big loss for going to college with men is trade jobs. There was a huge influx of college grads going into the tech sector and seeking jobs in the office space only to learn is sucks and pay is total ass. As a result in the past 5 years trade jobs have become heavily in demand with crazy good pay at starting positions.

Why go to college and get massively in debt for years, when you can go to a trade school or on job training programs which will have you getting work and paid within months? So many folks looked down on trade skills and jobs for years that the pay gap changed so much. A friend's son dropped out of college and joined an elevator technician job program, they teach you on site for several months, then he was a tech making close to 60k a year and more right quick. Tons of opportunities in fields which are more suited to males all paying well.
 
It cant be that bad for men as we earn more than women on avg anyway. A lot of guys get a decent blue collar job that can pay well without college/university. Most women cant. They either do the white collar academic role, or they skew poorly to the fast food and check out cashier at stores. A lot less in between. Guys will do anything.
For graduates, women make more than men and, overall, men work more hours. The difference in comparable jobs is most likely negligible.
 

teezzy

Fantastik Tuna
31 year old here

High school drop out. G.E.D. Film school. Community College. Associates in Liberal Arts.

Busted my ass and became a manager at every crap job i worked. Pull over 60k a year. Kept applying for better gigs. Have a decent car and 3br house in the Michigan suburbs. I did okay so far. Just looking to start a family eventually and I'll be fulfilled.

Hate this loser ass mentality that life is so unfair. Life is too fair. That's the problem. Inputs and outputs.
 

lem0n

Gold Member
I didn't go to school, mainly because I could never 100% decide what I wanted to do. Shit, I still have no clue where I'm "supposed" to be. I did know that I'd love to either work with cars, or teach... So I chose the more stable, easier path that required no schooling. I'm 33, help run a parts department at a Mazda dealer, have very little debt and make about 70k a year. This is pretty damn good for where I live. Could I have tried harder in life? Yes. Could I have learned more, gained more experience? Absolutely. Do I regret my path of low resistance? Absolutely not. I live a very low stress life, with a woman I love, I can afford to dabble in my hobbies, I'm surrounded by good people, and I have no kids. As a simple man, this brings me great joy.

Conversely, I 100% respect those that are always hungry, always wanting more. Those are the ones that will leave a legacy, good or bad.
 
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Maiden Voyage

Gold™ Member
31 year old here

High school drop out. G.E.D. Film school. Community College. Associates in Liberal Arts.

Busted my ass and became a manager at every crap job i worked. Pull over 60k a year. Kept applying for better gigs. Have a decent car and 3br house in the Michigan suburbs. I did okay so far. Just looking to start a family eventually and I'll be fulfilled.

Hate this loser ass mentality that life is so unfair. Life is too fair. That's the problem. Inputs and outputs.
Any applicants to help start the family part yet?
 

Maiden Voyage

Gold™ Member
It's been years since I've bothered tbh. Used to be really into the alternative hipster type. I'm a much different TeezzyD now than I was then. Spent a lot of time focusing on myself once I'd found out my mom was terminal. Became more reserved and conservative. Got off all social media apart from forums etc
Sorry to hear about your mom. You’ll find the right juggalette to call your wife someday.
 

Golgo 13

The Man With The Golden Dong
There’s many reasons for this - Men aren’t encouraged in current western culture as much as women are, for starters. Secondly, in distribution of scientifically measurable personality traits indicate that typical feminine temperament is more suited to the academic environment (women are higher in Agreeableness than men). Thirdly, the political corruption present in universities - a focus on a loathing for the western literary corpus along with a emphasis on political correctness , for starters, along with a sizeable increase in social sciences (the birth of ethnic and women’s studies as an example) is also more feminine leaning.

THEN, you have the increasing cultural awareness that that both the quality of education AND the correlation of educational attainment in acquiring higher salaries jobs has decreased dramatically in the last two decades - the exceptions here being science, medicine, physics, and mathematics.

I work in technology, and literally zero of my (mostly brilliant) colleagues, all men, have a degree. We all have certifications very specific to what we do, which cost us roughly $300-$500 each and are a better indication of competence due to their specificity relating to our job duties - no required classes on Lesbian Dance Theory.
 
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Engineering is worth it. Most of my classmates are well over six figures and we went to a state school. College practically paid for itself with internships.
 
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Golgo 13

The Man With The Golden Dong
Engineering is worth it. Most of my classmates are well over six figures and we went to a state school. College practically paid for itself with internships.
I agree with this sentiment. Engineering degrees are probably achievable by maybe %5 of people who go to college - one of the highest dropout rates of any degree. But if you can do it, I agree the investment in the degree is one of the few that pays off almost inevitably.
 
No matter where you go you won't encounter that stuff unless you are taking things like Gender Studies, or other fields that have a laser focus on those topics. Its not a reason to avoid college. 99% of people don't even graze that stuff. Even taking your basic psychology class just goes over the basic stuff. Also say that you are taking Gender Studies, you get taught on all aspects on it, not just the leftist version of it. There aren't radical leftist books out there that individuals exclusively use to learn about woman's studies, the material is much broader than that.

Undergrad is a job prospect machine, and that's about it. It's not used to make the individual smarter outside of the context of preparing individuals to be job ready.
I was at university in England around 20 years ago. I did a degree in politics but also did some elective subjects, one of which was gender studies. It was 100% left wing bias even back then. I can only assume it's got worse since.
 

lachesis

Member
The way I see it... most men need "purpose" in life to excel.
Leaders find "purpose" on their own, but not everyone can.
However there are vastly more folks who just needs to be "shown" the purpose in simple term, and they would excel as much as anyone by dedicating themselves.
In this high tech, post modern society - that "purpose" or "path of life" has become quite elusive.
It's no wonder people are losing their ways. Both Men and women.... but it is what it is - perhaps growing pain, or perhaps the sign of collapse.
But when things become more clear and men find out their own purpose in lives... it will change, I'm sure.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
The way I see it... most men need "purpose" in life to excel.
Leaders find "purpose" on their own, but not everyone can.
However there are vastly more folks who just needs to be "shown" the purpose in simple term, and they would excel as much as anyone by dedicating themselves.
In this high tech, post modern society - that "purpose" or "path of life" has become quite elusive.
It's no wonder people are losing their ways. Both Men and women.... but it is what it is - perhaps growing pain, or perhaps the sign of collapse.
But when things become more clear and men find out their own purpose in lives... it will change, I'm sure.
Who knows. Maybe young people now are overthinking it.

The vast majority of people work at a job that literally just supports business and profits ---> sales, marketing, manufacturing, some kind of service like advertising, programming games etc.... . There's only so many heartfelt ethical kinds of careers like medicine, social worker, charities etc....

Nothing wrong getting through life doing let's say a frontline job like a trucker, or a desk job like logistics and traffic. Same kind of industry. Not the type of jobs people would elevate into the same class as a doctor or dentist improving people's health, but who cares. If it's something you like and pays decently, just do it.

Do the ethical purpose shit after work hours.
 

Tams

Member
Who knows. Maybe young people now are overthinking it.

The vast majority of people work at a job that literally just supports business and profits ---> sales, marketing, manufacturing, some kind of service like advertising, programming games etc.... . There's only so many heartfelt ethical kinds of careers like medicine, social worker, charities etc....

Nothing wrong getting through life doing let's say a frontline job like a trucker, or a desk job like logistics and traffic. Same kind of industry. Not the type of jobs people would elevate into the same class as a doctor or dentist improving people's health, but who cares. If it's something you like and pays decently, just do it.

Do the ethical purpose shit after work hours.
Also, if there were no lorry drivers, cleaners, etc. how long would most of the more 'ethical' professions last? Most just days.

Hell, even stacking shelves at a supermarket helps society. Most people would go mental if suddenly those workers all just disappeared. Hardly a great job, but someone has to do it.
 
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StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
Also, if there were no lorry drivers, cleaners, etc. long would most of the more 'ethical' professions last? Most just days.

Hell, even stacking shelves at a supermarket helps society. Most people would go mental if suddenly those workers all just disappeared. Hardly a great job, but someone has to do it.
100% agree.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I didn't go to school, mainly because I could never 100% decide what I wanted to do. Shit, I still have no clue where I'm "supposed" to be. I did know that I'd love to either work with cars, or teach... So I chose the more stable, easier path that required no schooling. I'm 33, help run a parts department at a Mazda dealer, have very little debt and make about 70k a year. This is pretty damn good for where I live. Could I have tried harder in life? Yes. Could I have learned more, gained more experience? Absolutely. Do I regret my path of low resistance? Absolutely not. I live a very low stress life, with a woman I love, I can afford to dabble in my hobbies, I'm surrounded by good people, and I have no kids. As a simple man, this brings me great joy.

Conversely, I 100% respect those that are always hungry, always wanting more. Those are the ones that will leave a legacy, good or bad.
Looks like you made the right choice.

It looks like you didn't fall into the trap of forcing yourself to do what western world PR does which is pick a college/university 4 year program. You rarely see apprenticeships promoted. In Canada, college and university are much different too. College is more about 3 year programs a bit more hand on. Universities are 4 year programs and the academic/theory side, which also houses professional degrees. Universities are pushed by everyone from gov to companies to parents as it's the academic, white collar, be a desk boss kind of job. Dont waste your time getting dirty, doing technical certifications., or college. Gun for a university.

Media does too. MacLeans magazine is popular here and they do their various Best Universities rankings. Also best MBA schools. Never seen one for college.

As you said some like the hunger. More money, higher career positions, keeping up with the Jones. Not everyone is cut for it or should do it if they dont like or can handle it.
 

lem0n

Gold Member
Looks like you made the right choice.

It looks like you didn't fall into the trap of forcing yourself to do what western world PR does which is pick a college/university 4 year program. You rarely see apprenticeships promoted. In Canada, college and university are much different too. College is more about 3 year programs a bit more hand on. Universities are 4 year programs and the academic/theory side, which also houses professional degrees. Universities are pushed by everyone from gov to companies to parents as it's the academic, white collar, be a desk boss kind of job. Dont waste your time getting dirty, doing technical certifications., or college. Gun for a university.

Media does too. MacLeans magazine is popular here and they do their various Best Universities rankings. Also best MBA schools. Never seen one for college.

As you said some like the hunger. More money, higher career positions, keeping up with the Jones. Not everyone is cut for it or should do it if they dont like or can handle it.
A while back, I wasn't so sure. Now that things have fallen into place in my life though, I realize I did in fact make the right choice for myself.

Slight aside, but still kind of related: When I was fresh out of high school, the whole "not going right to college" thing was honestly thanks to pure laziness and wanting a break from school. I spent a lot of time gaming online around that time, just as the OG Xbox was bowing out and 360 was getting popular. Had a part time job, a room in my parents house, an old BMW I drove around/tinkered with, life was good. I kind of stagnated for a few years thanks to this, but kept up with all of my friends that went off to school. All but one of them had a hell of a time finding work once they wrapped up their 4 years. They were stressed out, pissed off, and ready to give up. Rightfully so. This really helped lead me down the anti-college road. I looked at it as a scam to lock people into student loans while not guaranteeing a way to pay them off. I realize this was quite the cynical outlook, but part of it is still true to me- they know what they're doing advertising schooling as the only way forward but of course neglect to mention how over saturated the market is now. The solution to this over-saturation is easy though, there should be more advertisement and promotion for trade schools. Like, in high school, not necessarily on TV or whatever. Personally, if I were going to go back to school for anything, it would be a trade. I like working with my hands, solving problems in real time, and not sitting at a computer or in a cubicle all day. I like to sit at a computer for fun :) I think lots of kids are pressured by their parents to do that white collar desk boss thing like you mentioned, and are subsequently directed away from the trade side of learning. The world needs carpenters, electricians, plumbers, welders, automotive technicians etc. Most of these pay quite well. The schooling is also less expensive.

Many years ago, college was absolutely a better proposition. You took out student loans, studied your major, finished up, got a job in your chosen field, made lots of money, paid said loans back and boom! Success! If it still worked like this today, I'd have had a different life. I don't want to think the way I do about higher education. I would LOVE to better myself. But financially, for most of us without a foot in the door or a unique, in demand field of expertise it just doesn't make much sense.
 

teezzy

Fantastik Tuna
I'm a service advisor, myself. lem0n lem0n

Seems like dealerships are breeding grounds for oddballs who fell through the cracks in life lol. At least where I work.
 

lem0n

Gold Member
I'm a service advisor, myself. lem0n lem0n

Seems like dealerships are breeding grounds for oddballs who fell through the cracks in life lol. At least where I work.
Ah, now that's funny.

It certainly seems that way, doesn't it? Fixed ops has all the oddballs, while sales attracts all the snakes-in-the-grass types.
 

Jsisto

Member
Also, if there were no lorry drivers, cleaners, etc. long would most of the more 'ethical' professions last? Most just days.

Hell, even stacking shelves at a supermarket helps society. Most people would go mental if suddenly those workers all just disappeared. Hardly a great job, but someone has to do it.

So true. I’m a grocery store manager. It’s humbling work, keeps me grounded, and I honestly enjoy it. Thankfully I work for a really good company, too, so I’m not treated like crap or encouraged to treat others like crap.
 
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