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In the 21st century, the real issue isn’t “How do you find information?” but “How do you sift through the oceans of data out there?” As a result, it can be hard to actually know what is “common knowledge” and what is some obscure factoid you have randomly memorized. 

Someone asked “What’s something you thought was common knowledge but found out most people didn’t know” and netizens shared their best examples. From intricate traffic rules to observations about human behavior, hopefully, you will learn something new. So get comfortable as you scroll through, upvote your favorite examples, and comment your ideas below. 

#1

If you flick the bar sticking out of your steering wheel up, it causes the lights on the right side of your vehicle to flash. And if you flick it down, the left side flashes, so people know you are going to make a turn or change lanes. It even works in pickup trucks!

EkbyBjarnum Report

#2

Queer people existed in the "olden times". And they exist in countries where it's banned. And they exist in ultra-conservative families.

PrecariousThings Report

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Geoffrey Scott
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Those fundamentalists who decry homosexuality as immoral fail to realize...first, that God made all...second, that Old Testament scripture recognized it. Called it immoral, but recognized it. "Nothing new under the sun"

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#3

Social media is NOT for you, it's for advertisers. You're the product.

blaspheminCapn Report

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Luke Branwen
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Except Tumblr. It has already cost a large company billions of dollars and is somehow still running.

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#4

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge You let people out before entering

Maybeyanny , Darius Krause Report

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Daniela Lavanza
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This is not really knowledge, more politeness and common sense: to get in, you need room made by people leaving.

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#5

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Being nice and patient will give you a bigger chance of getting a refund or a new of whatever is broken, than being angry and blaming the random worker

ellaablair , Clay Banks Report

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Sonja
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Nice and patient =/= make excuses and be avoidant though. You still need to be firm and show you won't just go away if they make it difficult. It means you don't raise your voice, don't make accusations, no name calling and simply stating the facts without assumptions of malice. Never say sorry for your complaint. But be friendly when addressing it. I want to bring to your attention that this food is cold and I ask you to get me hot food please. Is perfectly friendly and fine. Say thank you when they make it right.

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#6

You have to empty the lint trap on your dryer after each load.

SummerGirlsByLFO1999 Report

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#7

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge If you are driving and it is raining - turn your lights on.

broncoguy612 , Thái An Report

#8

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge That you should wash your hands every time you use the toilet. Yes, even if you “got nothing on them”.

Ecstatic-Barracuda20 , Clay Banks Report

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#9

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge HR is there to protect the employer, NOT you.

Grenadine is made from pomegranate, not cherry.

rayyy16 , im Gouw Report

#10

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Gambling at a casino will most likely result in losing money.

Layla_BC , Kaysha Report

#11

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge The older I get, the more I'm realizing basic history is not known at all.

Yanwes , Zach Plank Report

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VioletHunter
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

That's true. A lot of people have a very, very shaky grasp of even basic history. Kind of like people who can't even find their own continent on a world map.

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#12

RSVP means Please Respond. Not respond if you're coming, or respond if you're not coming. Respond whether you're coming or not.

EstablishmentLucky50 Report

#13

Vehicles entering a freeway/merging with traffic do not have the right-of-way and YIELD signs are not merely suggestions.

No_Independence1479 Report

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missmal
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Also, if the left lane is open, its common courtesy to move over to allow room for incoming traffic. 👀Texas

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#14

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Ammonia + Bleach = Poison Gas. Don't combine the two, and pay attention to the active ingredients on cleaning products. Glass cleaner is often ammonia-based while "bathroom cleaners" usually contain bleach, for example.

paleo2002 , Kelly Sikkema Report

#15

95% of getting what you want, is in HOW YOU ASK.

Don't be a d**k/karen, and you will likely get whatever you need.

PitBullFan Report

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Jared Robinson
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

"someone should have told you, at a very young age, that you attract more flies with honey than vinegar."

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#16

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Cows have to give birth first before they can produce milk
Just like any other mammal

schlingelschlange , Suvrajit 💭 S Report

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Verena
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The calves are taken away immediately after birth and put in separate "igloos", so no mommy time and no contact with other calves. However, some dairy farmers are very successful with a different approach: They leave the calves a couple of months (up to 10 months) with their moms, in the herd. The milk "lost" is no issue (the substitute the calves are fed is not cheap), the farmers have less work and the animals are healthier and well socialized.

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#17

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Lefty loosy, righty tighty

BubblesO4 , Christian Buehner Report

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Luke Branwen
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I've heard that in one language (I think it was Spanish/Portugese but I'm totally not sure) they have a version of this that goes "The Right oppresses, the Left liberates" and I think it's cool as hell 😁

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#18

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Mayonnaise does not have any dairy in it. Just because eggs are sold in the 'dairy' section of the grocery store does not mean eggs are dairy products. They will not trigger your lactose intolerance because they have no lactose in them.

WesleySmusher , Jaye Haych Report

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Sonja
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Be careful with that! Always read the ingredients. While it is true that eggs are not dairy, egg free mayonnaise can be made with whole fat milk and oil. So mayonnaise containing dairy exists. Especially when it's homemade.

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#19

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge If the traffic lights are out at an intersection, treat it as a 4 way stop.

porcelainvacation , Davis Sánchez Report

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Libstak
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Some of these are clearly American. In Australia you give wY to your right...we drive on the opposite side of the road so the equivalent is give way to your left

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#20

If interrogated by the police for a crime ask for a lawyer and say nothing. You can be incredibly guilty but without your testimony you have a chance to get off. You have rights.

df_45 Report

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Nina
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

You can also be incredibly innocent but get in trouble through the tunnel vision from investigators. (Ofcourse not all, but it happens)

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#21

I have an inner monologue which I thought everyone had

SL04NY Report

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Papa
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Mine is not a monologue. If I'm not actively thinking about something there's music in the background.

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#24

Some eggs aren't fertilized and will never become a baby/chicken/penquin. It baffles me how many folks Ive had to explain that to this month alone.

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VioletHunter
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2 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

All factory farmed eggs are unfertilized. Those hens never even see a rooster from afar.

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#25

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge Blue light on your dash means your brights are on

Car_loapher , Hannes Egler Report

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ƒιѕн
Community Member
2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

pffff... who has time to look at their dash when their looking at their phone instead.

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#26

I'm always surprised by the number of people who think that ponies are *baby* horses rather than *small* horses.

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Donkey boi
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This one is not so straight forward. There is no universal standard definition of 'pony'. In some places it is based on current height, and others it's a horse below the average height for it's breed. In some places it's based on the shape of the horse (shorter legs, stockier appearance, wider heads, etc). A few countries use a variation of the word to literally mean 'small/baby horse'. A few places even use the word to describe a female horse with a great temperament. So in summary, All ponies are horses, but not all horses are ponies, and all "baby" ponies are ponies, but not all "baby" horses are ponies, but all "baby" horses might be ponies, depending on where they grow up.

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#27

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge A lot of media online. It's easy to see something being really popular online and forget that it's only popular amongst people of a certain demographic or audience.

The_One_Guy1 , dole777 Report

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Luke Branwen
Community Member
2 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I'm in my late 20s and I teach English occassionally. Sometimes it's fun to inflict psychical damage to my teen students by asking questions like "Who's Mr. Beast?" (or any other famous Youtuber / internet celebrity they mention) 😁

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#28

Roman Numerals.

Not sure why I thought it was common knowledge.

Arkiswatching Report

#29

If you want to drink beer all night long, drink a glass of water between each beer. You will be the last one standing.

scrimage Report

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Daniela Lavanza
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2 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

It's also useful to avoid hangover (which is merely dehydration). Well, the best is to drink alcohol lightly, of course.

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#30

“Lefty Loosy, Righty Tighty”: 30 Highly Useful Facts That Are Not Yet Universal Knowledge The arrow next to your gas pump symbol on your dashboard indicates what side of the car your tank is on. ⛽️🚗

Iwantacheezeburger84 , Danny Sleeuwenhoek Report

Note: this post originally had 44 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.