So another of those “URGENT: MUST WRITE, RIGHT NOW” (that’s what I’m calling them) posts that I read about in the WP Reader feed was to share and respond to another post of your choice. I didn’t expect to find one this quickly, but I don’t ogle gift horses, so: et voila.
Now, let me preface my entire response with the acknowledgment and agreement that censorship, in theory, is reprehensible and can be taken way too far by governments and their officials. I’m not at all saying what Xi Jinping is up to is cool, in fact, my response is not directed to that facet of this post or its subject, and I apologize to the author of the post for not addressing what I think he intended as the main idea.
My response is directed at people who comment anonymously. I’ll pause here and, again, acknowledge that people should be free to say what they want without fear of their government or other negative or oppressive person, place or thing punishing them for sharing their opinions or experiences. However, let’s put aside the tyrannical intent of China’s C-O-C and talk about anonymous comments, okay? Cool.
But before we exit the C-O-C talk…I mean, seriously, we in the US who live in such shiny glass houses shouldn’t throw stones at another country’s highest official, considering our present presidential situation. *Ahem*
The huge increase in internet connectivity and use in just the last decade is mind boggling. According to the information I found at internetworldstats.com, internet usage went from a tiny sliver of 0.4% of the world’s population in 1995 to 51% in 2017.
The mediums of communication birthed by the internet, like forums, instant messaging, and, of course, email, have changed the very structure of our society. On a related note, I found an article at entrepreneur.com that offers a shocking summary of some of the big changes to the internet in the last 10 years that, inevitably, mentions some of the ways that the world wide web has directly affected most of our species.
I, personally, can barely remember my life before Google put the answers (or suggestions/options therefor, haha) at my fingertips. For someone like me, who’s got a curious streak the size of Texas, the access to all this information was a dream come true. I’m sure many would agree with that statement and share my sincere interest and intent which I do my best to manifest in a positive way that actively avoids irrelevant criticism or just plain malicious intent towards anyone.
OKAY, OKAY, YES, I am guilty of a drunken cyber investigation of a potential suitor met on a dating website in my younger years, but I stand by the statement that that was responsible. Maybe not the drunk part, but let’s not dwell 🙂 Moving on…
I love the internet – when it’s not taking forever to load a page or won’t stop harassing me with the ads. I am respectful of the internet and its powers, and through it, MY powers. I don’t make anonymous comments because, just as you have the right to in a US Court, you should be able to know who responded to something you said. If I wouldn’t say my comment to the person face-to-face, then I don’t post it. Because I’m not a coward and I don’t say mean, cruel, intentionally hurtful things that have, really, nothing to do with anything. I don’t seek to hurt people’s feelings because it’s not cool and it doesn’t make me feel good in any way. There have been less than a handful of times when I have inadvertently made a lazy comment that I didn’t intend to, but that hurt someone’s feelings and I couldn’t apologize enough. I felt terrible. I probably write and re-write EVERY EFFING EMAIL 10 times, at least; making sure that it is worded in a way that could not be construed negatively. Unless I meant it to be, which is very rare.
If you’re going to give a compliment and are just embarrassed to have the person know who you are, that’s one thing. I still think you shouldn’t post unless you can and would back it up, but that’s not hurtful or malicious, so I only sternly shake at my finger at that.
If you put on your “invisibility cloak” so you can trash others without fear of anyone knowing who you are, you are a COWARD. No one should have the right to wail and hate on others from behind a “Wizard of Oz, Parallel Universe” type of anonymity. You got something to say that you are reasonably sure won’t be taken as a compliment or in a positive manner? OWN UP OR SHUT UP.
If you wouldn’t say your nasty little comment to the person face-to-face, you don’t deserve to muddy their atmosphere with your pathetic cowardice. Hate and unnecessary negativity should never be allowed to be anonymous.
I have gotten into quite a few rows with some assholes who hide behind some dumb comic book inspired avatar and a fake name that’s more than likely NOT indicative of the person’s actual person. I may have gone a little too far on a couple occasions, giving said coward my address and phone number and a standing invitation (that, to date, none have accepted) to, uh, “come say that to my face” (bonus: I live in Hawaii, hellllllllo vacation! hahaha), but I don’t regret it and I would go toe-to-toe with a troll any day. You want some of this? Bring it on, bitch.
To me, in this day and age, the Internet Troll and the kind of person it takes to be one has become too commonplace and, in acknowledging the increased frequency of a troll’s appearance, it is an acceptance by the rest of us and we might as well start a table at every local school’s Career Day events that passes out pamphlets explaining how to be the ugliest version of yourself, anonymously. Yeah, totally…HELL NO! This shit needs to be given a good kick in the ass and told not to show its ugly face around these parts (the world) again. I have just the boots…
Anonymity is meant to shelter those who would be persecuted for speaking their truth. Anonymity is NOT for cowardly, small minded, ignorant piss-ants that are under the disillusioned belief that their hate and the emotion that it evokes transforms them into He-Man or She-Ra. Guess what, assholes? You’re still Gargamel – and not the handsome Hank Azaria version, this version:
And hey, I get that some of these trolls have serious, likely deep-seated psychological issues, but that still does not and should never give them the green light to spread their problems in the colors of hate and malicious intent. Healthcare controversy aside, go find a therapist.
I strongly suggest that everyone, every time, THINK about what you say or tweet or type or whatever you call it in your part of the planet, THINK how you would feel if the comment you’re about to make was directed at you. Some assholes might not care, so for those people – YOU SUCK, read a book and keep your hate to yourself. For the rest of us, let’s always be mindful of what we put out into this world because it is definitely what will come back to you. Love and acceptance and support – or just fucken NOT commenting if you have only hate to spew = much better karma than the opposite.
My best & warmest blessings of love, hope and faith to all.
The Chinese government under president Xi Jinping is continuing to make life on the internet difficult for its potential detractors. Yesterday (Aug. 25), the country’s highest internet regulator released new rules (link in Chinese) that govern who can post what online. The upshot: anonymity on the Chinese internet is just about dead. The new rules…