Though there are some analysis that show that social pressure to behave properly still prevails on the internet, I don’t think the sentiment of those of us who read comments feel the same way. If that were the case, then Amanda Palmer’s touching blog post on internet bullying wouldn’t have struck so many chords.
There are other studies and theories out there (like this one printed in the Wall Street Journal) that say that the internet lowers our self-control. That the fact that we are interfacing with machines makes it easy to forget that there are real people on the other end of those wires.
I think it’s easy for fear and anger to seep into the lines. It’s also easy to misunderstand sarcasm and to lose the feeling of any post, tweet or status in translation from one person to the next. That’s the danger of communicating with the written word.
The above cartoon is about myself, because I don’t think I’m exempt. I do generally log off before I say or do anything I might regret. I often save things into drafts if I get too worked up about them. I block people a lot. I try to stay human.
What do you think about this topic?