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Old 07-01-2014, 12:02 PM
 
Location: East Coast
673 posts, read 575,632 times
Reputation: 648

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Quote:
Originally Posted by sargentodiaz View Post
Date: June 27, 2014
Source: University of Utah

As someone who haunts online political discussion forums I can attest to this.

The problem is simple - anonymity! They hide behind unreal user names and avatars and fear no retribution for their cruel remarks and personal attacks.

Some site administrators and moderators do try to curb this but it's an overwhelming task. I know of one site that folded because it got too nasty, verging on libel.

Summary:


Read more @ How common are cruel comments posted to online news sites? -- ScienceDaily
**********************

I found this thread to be very interesting and timely!

Being "new" to CD and a few other on-line forums, I was very surprised to see the amount of vitriol in supposed "helpful" replies. However, there exists a wonderful on-line forum having to do with art, that I've rarely observed to have any angry or sarcastic comments. So, maybe certain topics press people's 'buttons'.

Very often, the replies to news articles and on-line forums are pithy quips laden with sarcasm, instead of "normal" (maybe the word should be "healthy"?) even-toned responses. Also, there's tons of anger-filled opinions, most without substantive support or references supporting their stance.

I think the first article below is right-on about it being a combination of insecurity, anger, and social awkwardness!

Along these lines I wonder if someone has done a study on the frequency of posts with such sarcastic or angry comments from one poster! Maybe that would reveal a lot about their personality, and as such, the personality traits of people who spend a lot of time on-line doing this.

There's also a lot of anger-filled retorts as well, as discussed in the second reference below.

So, in reading the article from the reference link above, I've also found similar and additional supportive remarks from these articles:


Sarcasm: Why It Hurts Us - Science of People

"...new research says that sarcasm is merely thinly veiled meanness. In fact, a recent study by shows that teasers usually believe their words are less hurtful than their victim thinks.
The dictionary defines Sarcasm as: “The use of irony to mock or convey contempt”
Sarcasm is a simply a way of covering contempt or hate."

This article cites three main reasons for sarcastic comments or replies on-line:
1. Insecurity
2. Latent anger
3. Social Awkwardness

Why Is Everyone on the Internet So Angry? - Scientific American

" it actually damages society and mental health"
and "These days, online comments "are extraordinarily aggressive, without resolving anything," said Art Markman, a professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. "At the end of it you can't possibly feel like anybody heard you."

the causes are:
"First, commenters are often virtually anonymous, and thus, unaccountable for their rudeness. Second, they are at a distance from the target of their anger — be it the article they're commenting on or another comment on that article — and people tend to antagonize distant abstractions more easily than living, breathing interlocutors. Third, it's easier to be nasty in writing than in speech, hence the now somewhat outmoded practice of leaving angry notes (back when people used paper), Markman said."

also,

"And finally, Edward Wasserman, Knight Professor in Journalism Ethics at Washington and Lee University, noted another cause of the vitriol: bad examples set by the media. "Unfortunately, mainstream media have made a fortune teaching people the wrong ways to talk to each other, offering up Jerry Springer, Crossfire, Bill O'Reilly. People understandably conclude rage is the political vernacular, that this is how public ideas are talked about," Wasserman wrote in an article on his university's website. "It isn't." "

Interesting thread...thanks! ~ Dandiday
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Old 07-01-2014, 02:21 PM
 
667 posts, read 1,040,789 times
Reputation: 821
I haven't read all comments, so maybe this has been posted....

People are all up in arms when online news outlets do away with the comments sections. "Violation of free speech!" or "Censorship!" they cry. Puh-lease. Frankly I want to read the news, not people's opinions on the news. (I must admit, though, that in my area the local newspapers and even TV stations do such a terrible journalistic job that I often get more factual information from the comments, than from the articles.)

But I've really grown tired of constant participation. It also makes journalists lazy. They often even try to get their photos and video from "users" rather than sending a photographer to the scene. I couldn't care less about people's opinions and I am happy when news outlets remove the comments section. What I dislike is when they determine (typically quite arbitrarily) that a particular story may be "sensitive" and disable comments to it. In my area I've noticed this occurs even when the story is about a particular town which has a worse reputation than surrounding towns. It doesn't matter what the story is about and how positive the exposure may be for the town. No comments allowed.

Related... some of the vitriol in the comments section often has little to do with the subject of the article, and is directed at other posters. Part of this is clearly the fact that some people post very frequently, so they become "known" personas on the site, especially when the site is local or related to a niche topic. People seem to have histories with each other, developed just from reading the comments they post, and this leads to clashes. It's almost like a whole little subculture has arisen on some sites.
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Old 07-01-2014, 04:48 PM
 
11,210 posts, read 8,347,320 times
Reputation: 20254
I don't understand why anyone has to be hateful. The pen is mightier than the sword. I'm horrified to think I've been careless in the past and really messed up someone's day/week/?. People take their own lives over what's said to them on the internet!! Be nice!!!
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Old 07-01-2014, 05:51 PM
 
Location: zone 5
7,330 posts, read 13,167,971 times
Reputation: 9611
Quote:
Originally Posted by Delahanty View Post
Who would argue that the above comment is cruel? Of course it is. But there are plenty of other cruel statements on plenty of other sites, just as there have been cruel things said to people in the past. Does it even matter if the homeless man even read that cruel comment (he probably didn't), or are the other readers/posters "offended."

The real problem here is that we're turning kids into easily-offended adults who then want to become control freaks. The lesson taught should be that there are ignorant people in the world who will say cruel things, but that you shouldn't let it bother you.
The real problem here is that as trolling and vitriol becomes more common, it starts to seem less inappropriate to some people. From forums to comment sections, to talk radio shows and tv shows like Maury, being nasty and outrageous is almost a fad. Having intelligent thoughts to offer, meh, too boring I guess. Pretty sad for our society.
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Old 07-01-2014, 07:37 PM
 
4,586 posts, read 4,605,035 times
Reputation: 4358
Quote:
Originally Posted by sargentodiaz View Post
Date: June 27, 2014
Source: University of Utah

As someone who haunts online political discussion forums I can attest to this.

The problem is simple - anonymity! They hide behind unreal user names and avatars and fear no retribution for their cruel remarks and personal attacks.

Some site administrators and moderators do try to curb this but it's an overwhelming task. I know of one site that folded because it got too nasty, verging on libel.

Summary:


Read more @ How common are cruel comments posted to online news sites? -- ScienceDaily
Short answer: as common as the stupid questions asked....anonymity has nothing to do with it, look what's being posted & promoted....the internet is trying to dumb people down! Some people can tell....
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Old 07-01-2014, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Brawndo-Thirst-Mutilator-Nation
16,327 posts, read 16,435,972 times
Reputation: 12357
I see a BIG difference between some jerk who talks $h!t to/about someone online.....and someone who posts commentary/political commentary that is extremely unpopular and not well received....even if their opinions may have a LOT of truth to them.
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Old 07-01-2014, 10:39 PM
 
261 posts, read 331,190 times
Reputation: 472
On these anonymous forums, some people really show their true colors and what's really in their heart. Reading the comment sections of newspapers and other online forums, there's a lot of angry, mean spirited, spiteful, unhappy, hateful people out there. That's one new thing I've learned about human beings since the invention of the home computer. I knew they were out there, I just didn't realize there are so many.
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Old 07-01-2014, 11:13 PM
 
47,576 posts, read 60,469,168 times
Reputation: 22275
Fine line between honesty and cruel.

The newspapers here stopped comments, the most comments seemed to be about drunk drivers either killing others or killing themselves. People would get upset if some drunk killed himself or herself driving and everyone didn't show the proper sympathy for them.
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Old 07-02-2014, 06:34 AM
 
4,586 posts, read 4,605,035 times
Reputation: 4358
Quote:
Originally Posted by tickyul View Post
....and someone who posts commentary/political commentary that is extremely unpopular and not well received....even if their opinions may have a LOT of truth to them.
What is the problem with that? Are we in some "communist" environment where everything should be "hush hush"?

The VERY reason things are moving in the wrong direction "politically" IS because people don't talk, and don't talk where they need to talk...posting on a message board won't change a policy, emailing your representatives can! (or should be the first step towards changing things for the better again). The biggest problem is fighting with "stupid" and "lazy"! & Sadly, there is an epidemic of those that has taken over all forms of common sense that ever existed!
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Old 07-02-2014, 07:19 AM
 
197 posts, read 241,882 times
Reputation: 432
[On these anonymous forums, some people really show their true colors and what's really in their heart. Reading the comment sections of newspapers and other online forums, there's a lot of angry, mean spirited, spiteful, unhappy, hateful people out there. That's one new thing I've learned about human beings since the invention of the home computer. I knew they were out there, I just didn't realize there are so many.]

That's me as well.

I kind of wish for the days where I DIDN'T realize there were so many. Not that I want to live with my head in the sand, but somehow the not knowing was easier.

I just keep telling myself that there are still a lot of good people out there, too.
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