The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Maybe Social Media Needs To Become A Full Contact Sport …
November 26, 2020, 7:30 am
Filed under: Attitude & Aptitude, Comment, Culture, Digital, Diversity, Social Media

I am part of the last generation who experienced life before the internet while also being able to embrace it as an integral part of our life.

It has been amazing and as an [over]user/sharer on pretty much every platform out there, it’s fair to say that I am a big advocate of it.

However things have been changing.

Maybe it’s due to the hell of 2020.

Maybe it’s because we live in such political times.

Maybe there’s simply more pricks out there these days.

But it’s not nearly as nice as it once was.

It’s been happening over some time, but the warm, supportive nature of the mid-2000 blogging community has definitely gone.

I loved that time.

It actually was a community rather than just a bunch of people being on the same platform.

And while people disagreed with each other, there wasn’t the spite you see today.

OK, sometimes there was – but when it happened, the community united to stamp it out.

The attitude was ‘by all means have a different point of view, but maintain respect for the other person views as well’.

It was self-policing … a community who openly opposed anyone who was being toxic towards another, or being condescending or desperate to not just ‘be right’ but wanted to ensure the other person looked foolish to all around them.

But that’s the environment we have on social media most days.

All social media … from Twitter to Linkedin and everything in-between.

Sure, sometimes the internet reveals it can be a community again.

United for something good or meaningful.

But sadly that’s now the exception, overtaken by a bunch of arrogant, condescending, self-righteous pricks.

Who are mainly men. White men.

Who are happy at the destruction of another.

Ridiculing them.

Humiliating them.

Of course trolls have been out there since the earliest days, but we are witnessing a new breed. They’re not the people who we can easily dismiss as vicious fools simply seeking attention.

No, this lot are much harder to spot.

Because they’re able to be personable one second and destructive the next … leaving a stream of people confused and broken from the experience of the interaction.

Broken in terms of who they are.
Broken in terms of what they believe.
Broken in terms of thinking they can contribute.

The ‘I-am-better-than-you’ attitude is everywhere.

It is social bullying of the highest order … where groups form around cults of personality and feel it is OK to ignore pleasantries, debate or reason and feel it is perfectly acceptable to revel in trampling on another.

No one – or very few – would ever dare do that to someone face-to-face and yet they think this is perfectly acceptable behaviour on social platforms.

Well it isn’t.

We have enough hate and anger in the World without us happily adding to it.

And while some may say, “it’s only a small minority doing it”.

They’re confusing the small minority who do it all the time with the large majority who do it some of the time.

And while I appreciate we can all make mistakes or have a bad day – and those so people can show incredible compassion towards others at certain times … the fact is, when we fail to acknowledge our bad behaviour – whether through embarrassment or arrogance – we are showing others it’s OK.

To not care about others.

To think our views are superior views.

Which is why we should maybe all practice something Jill has told me since we got together.

Never do or say anything to someone you wouldn’t do with your significant other next to you.

Because if you do, you can’t complain when you’re punched in the mouth.

16 Comments so far
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Blows my mind you of all people is saying this but you’re right.

Comment by Bazza

Robert was never destructive.
Not unless you were.

Comment by George

You mean unless he thought you were. He thought a lot of people were if I remember correctly.

Comment by Bazza

This is about you isn’t it Baz?

Comment by Rob

You also sound like those people who say they could leave their house unlocked in the “good old days.”

Comment by Bazza

He grew up in Nottingham. Was anyone there was ever able to say that?

Comment by Pete

Well said Pete. Though please don’t ever work for the Nottingham tourism board.

Comment by Rob

I am assuming you’re talking about twitter and instagram because the posts on this blog have always “enjoyed” a daily dose of unnecessary abuse.

Comment by Pete

A good training ground for dealing with trolls.

Comment by George

I’ve said it before that the daily abuse I get on here has meant I’ve not had too many real abusive trolls, because they think you lot are doing their job for them. Hahahaha.

Comment by Rob

Without wishing to sound rude, the previous posts of this week were rather superficial. This is very good. The community aspect has definitely gone. It may exist in pockets but certainly not at scale. If people acted in the street as they do on social media, there would be a lot of broken noses.

Comment by George

Adding to the irony is a large proportion of social media users will be celebrating thanksgiving tomorrow. A day of respecting and being grateful to others. If only that could carry on beyond 24 hours.

Comment by George

You didn’t like my earlier posts?
Even the one about my stalking of Jorge? Hahahaha.
Happy thanksgiving for tomorrow/today. I must admit I always found that day bizarre, given the divisive nature of normal life that existed there. But then I was living in the US during the Trump era, so maybe it was just a byproduct of that. I hope so.

Comment by Rob

No I didn’t. And don’t hate on thanksgiving too much. It is a good day and a nice rest from reality.

Comment by George

I miss the blogging community thing, really miss it. For someone as odd and shy as me, it was a real blessing
The Twitter version these days is a bit smart arsey

Comment by Northern

Is that why you keep coming here, because it’s low rent arsey?

Happy thanksgiving to no one on here.

Comment by DH

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