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Online hate. Why we're all stuck in high school.


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#26 RichardParker

Posted 04 June 2012 - 06:53 PM

QUOTE (Excentrique @ 04/06/2012, 06:36 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
. I'm with you Amity. Sometimes the internet makes me want to go bush.

But you CAN go bush from the Internet. You can just turn it off. You can't just not go to work or school without big life consequences. That's the difference.  I've had experiences online where I felt I'm being attacked. It can be distressing, and people can be knobs.  But if the people are strangers, it's over as soon as I switch off the computer. And I have the power to do that.  If I'm in the public eye due to the career I've chosen, or because I've got a life-revealing blog, I can't really complain if people respond honestly. Even if those people are b**ches.

#27 mudskippa

Posted 04 June 2012 - 06:59 PM

QUOTE (mavisandjack @ 04/06/2012, 06:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
FWIW I do happen to think some parenting practices which deny a baby love and comfort are abusive. I choose not to get involved. But why am I not able to voice an opinion if I want to?


I guess the issue is that there will be something you are doing that someone else thinks is abusive to your child. When you are talking about that thing, how much do you want to hear that someone else thinks you are abusive when you know very well that your child is fine and thriving despite this terribly abusive thing you are doing? Let's face it, it doesn't take much these days for someone to think you are a bad parent, but you don't necessarily want to hear their soap box oration on the subject of your parental failings. Especially when they are doing something that YOU think is abusive. LOL.

#28 Lipstick on a Pig

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:00 PM

QUOTE (kerrie23 @ 04/06/2012, 04:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Yes, there were some nasty remarks made in response to a newspaper article written about my father.  The catalyst for the article was his death notice that had appeared the week before, it was written by him, and it was different to the normal depressing death notices, he asked for no prayers or flowers and invited people to smile at a dog.  The death notice also made Column 8 in the SMH, The Fitz Files, ABC radio and various other media outlets culminating in Kevin Rudd tweeting the story the ran on him in the Illawarra Mercury.  Some randoms felt that it was necessary to accuse my father of thinking himself to be better than other people, which is incredibly insulting - he stood up for the rights of everybody, standing on picket lines supporting workers rights, setting up the homework centres for Indigenous children, protesting nuclear testing, he marched in every May Day March too and so much more.  Yet people hide behind user names and feel it is ok to criticise thereby offending his daughters and tarnishing the good name that my father had/has.


Kerrie is your dad from Wollongong? If so, I read about him in the Mercury and I really thought he sounded like a fantastic ratbag. My kind of guy. I'm so sorry you've lost him.



#29 Clever Clogs

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:03 PM

QUOTE (mudskippa @ 04/06/2012, 06:59 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I guess the issue is that there will be something you are doing that someone else thinks is abusive to your child. When you are talking about that thing, how much do you want to hear that someone else thinks you are abusive when you know very well that your child is fine and thriving despite this terribly abusive thing you are doing? Let's face it, it doesn't take much these days for someone to think you are a bad parent, but you don't necessarily want to hear their soap box oration on the subject of your parental failings. Especially when they are doing something that YOU think is abusive. LOL.


Yep and that's my point! I choose not to get involved because I'm sure people don't agree with my parenting style and that's okay, diversity is interesting. Unfortunately science is on my side! And I do care about how other people raise their kids to the extent that their future social interactions determine how our society functions.

#30 CalEliKat

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:04 PM

Yep, that was my fantastic Dad.

#31 mudskippa

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:10 PM

QUOTE (mavisandjack @ 04/06/2012, 07:03 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And I do care about how other people raise their kids to the extent that their future social interactions determine how our society functions.


Me too - but tons of people just don't want to hear it or don't believe it hurts or matters anyway if they just let their kid do x or y. Luckily, many kids self-correct.

#32 NotTheSame

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:32 PM

Why the Internet (or anything else in your adult life) is actually NOT “just like high school”.

I'm sick of the 'just like high school' line people trot out often.

#33 BadCat

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:39 PM

I think there have always been nasty people and there always will.  It's not about high school.  It's not about women.  It's not about the mean brigade or the nasty pasties.  

Used to be when someone annoyed you, you complained to your mates and that was that.  Now you complain to the internet.  And then someone comes in on the side of the person you are complaining about.  And then it becomes an argument.

I like that people still feel strongly enough about things to argue their point and I think we would lose a lot if we all agreed to disagree.  Robust debate is a good thing and the price we pay to keep that alive is that sometimes it will get ugly.  At that point you can choose to step away from the argument.

I can never condone the sort of nastiness that leads people to post vile comments on a deceased persons FB tribute page.  But I recognise that they are just the nasty people who have always been there and I refuse to allow them to drive me to despair.  

People haven't changed.  Just the reach of their comments.

#34 nano-tyrannus

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:40 PM

To be honest, I think it's perfectly warranted. The human race isn't exactly governed by Darwinian natural selection, so it stands to reason that complex social relationships should help to moderate the weaker links in our gene pool.

#35 rose888

Posted 04 June 2012 - 07:42 PM

One problem with the internet is how what is essentially a trivial issue can be made into a touchstone issue that you have to be either for or against. For a while i have suspected that many sites are encoraging this as a way of making their site more popular.

Take for example the Chrissie Swan thing. Before  I read some of the comments I had just read an article about the death of people in a massacre in Syria. Comments following the Syria story rightly used strong language to condemn the deaths. I then read the Chrissie Swan piece and was amazed that exactly the same language and tone were used to condemn Chrissie.

I am not saying that child obesity is a trivial issue but compared to the deaths in Syria....

Moreover there seems to be a competition amonst posters to use the strongest language without any thought of whether in the great scheme of things it is warranted. Surely at some point the voice of sanity by way of a forum moderator should at least remind people that virulent personal attacks or extreme positions may not be warranted.

On an internet forum there is a fine line between asking/receiving advice and providing entertainment to casual readers and this means there is a real dilemma where the line is drawn by moderators. Some appear to value good advice over entertainment while others seem to allow entertainment to be the main criteria.

As the internet matures it will be interesting seeing how this develops.

Edited by rose888, 04 June 2012 - 07:43 PM.


#36 F.E.B.E

Posted 04 June 2012 - 08:39 PM

QUOTE
Take for example the Chrissie Swan thing. Before I read some of the comments I had just read an article about the death of people in a massacre in Syria. Comments following the Syria story rightly used strong language to condemn the deaths. I then read the Chrissie Swan piece and was amazed that exactly the same language and tone were used to condemn Chrissie.


Great point. Sometimes I feel that the internet has no sense of perspective.

#37 The Cat

Posted 04 June 2012 - 09:06 PM

...changed my mind. *grins*

Edited by The Cat, 04 June 2012 - 10:11 PM.


#38 purplekitty

Posted 04 June 2012 - 10:29 PM

Sometimes I think the mantra "it's just like high school" is the real high school where anyone disagreeing with you ,and saying so, was being "really mean".

The internets a big place. You can always find an echo chamber to sit in that will bounce back your opinions to you, full of praise, and allow you to never question them.

And what Greenbag said.


#39 CocobeanLillylove

Posted 04 June 2012 - 11:32 PM

QUOTE (SPACE HYENA @ 04/06/2012, 05:53 PM)
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I don't think much of someone though who bemoans the nastiness online while calling people high school b*tches, nasty pasties, angry mob and mean brigade though. I'd rather be someone who is blunt and lacks a bit of tact than a hypocrite.


Are you saying that pulling people up on their nastiness is hypocritical? What is the alternative then? Ignoring the behaviour or allowing nastiness to just go ahead?
I would say that it is hypocritical to pull someone up on their nastiness yet to be nasty yourself but I don't believe the act of pointing it out is also nasty.
In response to a few other posters - I think there is a big and clear difference from having a robust debate with attitude to making it about something else such as constant negative remarks towards the same person or making it not about the debate but about something else. It's obvious to everyone and as much as the 'nasty' people try to make excuses for 'b**chiness' or ridicule the claims of 'high school behaviour' IMO some people will always behave in an immature way and I don't believe that true nastiness should ever be ignored - people should be pulled up on it. People will always make excuses for it - just like the bullies did in high school.
I think most of us are capable of online nastiness - I know I am, but then if I'm honest with myself it isn't really about the person I've been negative towards but about my own issues or insecurities.
I have to emphasise that I'm not talking about healthy debate on a particular topic or a fun robust argument with a bit of sass and attitude thrown in. I love that about EB!

Edited by CocobeanLillylove, 04 June 2012 - 11:59 PM.


#40 RealityBites

Posted 05 June 2012 - 09:06 AM

QUOTE (purplekitty @ 04/06/2012, 10:29 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Sometimes I think the mantra "it's just like high school" is the real high school where anyone disagreeing with you ,and saying so, was being "really mean".

The internets a big place. You can always find an echo chamber to sit in that will bounce back your opinions to you, full of praise, and allow you to never question them.


Exactly.

#41 F.E.B.E

Posted 05 June 2012 - 10:23 PM

Perhaps the full moon has something to do with it Amity? The mod team is always busier this time of the month!

#42 TNH1

Posted 06 June 2012 - 11:15 AM

All post on the internet should have an upvote/downvote system (like Reddit.com). This would mean (hopefully!) that inappropriate comments get relegated to the bottom of the discussion while clever/interesting/relevant debate rises to the top. This has the bonus of supporting people who are feeling bullied online as they can clearly see 306 people downvoted the comment and that it is therefore not held by the majority. Unfortunately it is sometimes only the extremists who bother to post...

#43 Mummy Duck

Posted 06 June 2012 - 11:24 AM

QUOTE (Retro_Mumma @ 04/06/2012, 05:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
These are my thoughts too.

When I read something horrible that someone has written I dont think "good point, what a clever, funny person" I think "wow something is seriously wrong with that person to make them write something like that" or "that person has no tact" depending on the scale of their remark.

I believe; "People who are brutally honest get more satisfaction out of the brutality than out of the honesty." Richard J. Needham


Exactly Retro!

My high school was as tame as a kitten compared to the big cat fights I see on EB.

I honestly feel some members treat it as a sport. They are trying to be mean and wrap it all up in clerver.



#44 wabbitsw

Posted 11 June 2012 - 04:24 PM

Yes it is sad Amity. Personally I think Chrissie Swan looks absolutely content with her lot in life and I don't think her kids are obese!! I bought the magazine because I liked looking at a real woman with her real kid and both looked so happy. I wish that for every mum and kid.  Unfortunately Amity, from my experiences with school mums and mother's groups I just think the b**chiness has transferred from the b**chy schoolyard gossip onto the internet. Some people just don't emotionally graduate from high school. You're right greater anonymity on the internet means people are more willing to say what they think without inhibitions. Age chronology doesn't correlate to maturity. Well mannered tactful people know when to get into a debate , know how to handle it with  maturity, sensitivity and intelligence. The internet probably isn't the platform for any of that. Good on you for commenting on this issue.

#45 Melissa4444

Posted 11 June 2012 - 06:33 PM

I agree with you that there is a lot of unnecessary vitriol.

The Tizzie Hall stuff though? Totally justified. Her practices are wrong. Doesn't matter which way you swing it, just wrong. Those poor, poor babies.

#46 madmother

Posted 11 June 2012 - 07:11 PM

I think the high school line is simplifying the issue.

It is extremely hard to convey tone in the written word, and in heated debates, when tempers and emotions are running hot, things can be misconstrued.

We also need to consider the nature of the internet. We do not (no matter how much it feels like it) KNOW each other. We have no way of understanding where a person may be coming from, their history, their hurt or maybe just the fact that they haven't slept in a week or are coming from a point of personal investment in a situation.

I am passionate about kids with autism. I live it. I also come across as a lot more tolerant when explaining or educating someone irl. Online i often have trouble conveying tone, and when it gets heated, am far more likely to take on the lioness protecting her cub role than in person. Not because it is warranted online, but because I do not have to see these people face to face in my life and thus will be less diplomatic, nor bite my tongue in fear of repercussions everyday.

And if it has been a particularly bad day on the ASD rollercoaster, and if I have fought every system known to man for my child's rights, then my tolerance is lower... but someone starting a topic on "normal" kids held back by the disabled kid, they wouldn't know it, would they? And I'd jump on it  and them pretty damn hard.

#47 BetteBoop

Posted 11 June 2012 - 07:32 PM

I don't think the internet is significantly any more or less like highschool than the workplace. Or the gym.

Adults and children share the same irrational thoughts and fears. Adults just learn to hide their reactions better.

QUOTE (mavisandjack @ 04/06/2012, 06:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
No one is forced to live a public life. Being a model, actor, writer ... all these things are a choice. I think choosing a public life means knowing the possible consequences.


I think that's a cop out.

People in the public eye don't deserve whatever they get. Some people overstep the line of basic human decency and forget there is a person behind the public facade who is likely to have some reaction to vicious words.

And yes, some people have no choice about being famous. The media hones in on ordinary people and turns them into celebrities. Children of celebrities have no say on their public image.

They're torn to shreds just as much as fame hungry ASWs on reality tv shows.

#48 Not_A_Normal_Man

Posted 11 June 2012 - 09:57 PM

As a man of 36 years and having grown up in a tough environment, I can affirm that online abusive comments  are the weakest traits of the individuals in questions.  

Those who bully/abuse the online community are clearly showing that they are rejected in the real world in one way or another and are frustrated with their issues in questions.  Bear in mind that I chose the word "issues" not "problems".  Those cyber bully are so afraid of voicing their ill-intention in persons that anonymity is their only way out.  Weak people's choice of communication to tell you the truth.

The best advice I can give is to know whether you have the same issues as the abuser.  When you are being abused out of the blue, just judge them with kindness and write back nicely all your achievements compared to their insignificance.  This is in noway to put them down vindictively but just to make them realise that you are someone.  If you have the same issues, seek help from those who can help you.  Make sure that you are ok. You don't want to suffer at home with those same issues.

Not_A_Normal_Man - Sydney 2012



#49 Chchgirl

Posted 11 June 2012 - 11:10 PM

Do what I do Amity, don't despair, ignore and hide! Stick my head in the sand...although the chrissie swan and 74 kg woman comments really annoyed me, but I am happy to say I didn't see nastiness in the chrissie swan threads here. Or my head really is in the sand!

#50 WinterIsComing

Posted 12 June 2012 - 10:15 AM

Amity, which book are you talking about? Would like to look it up...




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