Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The internet is a trip back to immaturity sometimes

Earlier tonight, I wrote a frustrated Tweet about feeling ready to burn my Twitter, my blog and anything else associated with that Internet community. I may or may not go through with it; I plan on taking tonight to sleep it off and see if the anger wears off in the morning before I shoot things all to hell.

That said, the blogging community disgusts me sometimes. Its not that people blog, or how personal that get. That's their call and they have to do what's right by them. Its how people behave towards each other via the Internet that's absolutely sickening some days, and today, was enough to make me want to remove myself from any association with any of it.

People get some really big balls when they're on the Internet. Its easy to hide behind the safety of a computer and comment on someones blog anonymously. Its also easy as hell to comment with your name, or Tweet about them, or write a post about them because you probably never have to face them again, right? You don't know them, they don't know you, and you can hide behind the safety of your laptop, writing snarky judgmental things you wouldn't have the guts to say in person.

Maybe growing up in the middle of nowhere changed my perspective on all of this. I try not to publicly say things about someone if I couldn't look them in the eye after saying it. I'm used to having to look the same people in the eye, day after day. The people I went to school with were in my class every year, from kindergarten to grade 12, no exaggeration. I'm used to facing the consequences of bad mouthing someone. They find out, and having to face them sucks. Period.

But its one thing for someone in elementary school to talk badly about someone else. They're young, they're immature. But when grown women (or men!) do it online, its pretty sickening. When I read a post that's slamming another blogger for a choice she made, or hating on a particular group of mothers for choosing not to use product X or parenting school X for their baby*, I wonder what grade we're all in. Really? What's next, people? The note that says "Are you mad at so-and-so? Check yes or no"?

Can we not all just live our own lives, and celebrate THOSE on our blogs? Can we do it without calling someone out that we don't even know? Talk about your friends, your family, your life...and don't worry that you don't agree with the decisions strangers make.

The next time you're contemplating posting a negative Tweet or blog or comment about someone, ask yourself how it would feel if you ran into that person the day after they read what you're saying, and had to explain it to their face, and see if you still think its the right thing to do.

*I'm not linking to any of the posts that set this rant off. A couple of them are pretty asshat-ish and don't need any more publicity from me than they're already gotten.


janny226 said...

Hi, I just found you firs the first time (via A Mommy Story) but I'm with you on the cr*p people say. One of my blogs is often a rant about my son's school program, but I try to say only things that, were I braver, I'd say in person -- at any rate, things that if the people they're about read it, I'd be willing to follow up on in person.

I hope you'll keep your side of the online conversation going -- if those of us who wish to remain civil shut up, there will only be the horrible voices left.

So consider this an offer of love -- if you're near NY I can offer chocolate as well!

bethany actually said...

I know what you are saying. I KNOW. I have actually been the target of some of those bloggers. And you know what? I don't care. I mean, I wish there weren't people like that on the internet, but I guess the internet is like a microcosm of the real world, where there are also immature people and a few real jerks. Please don't leave the internet, because if you did then we would be short one of the good ones, and we need all the good people we can get around here. :-)

p.s. My verification word is "nonboolo" which makes me giggle a little. Just thought I'd share.

Trenches of Mommyhood said...

Amen. I know what you're speaking of and just....AMEN.

It's the pack mentality. It's the "mean girl" crowd. It's high school.

Lost In Splendor said...

I wish I knew what you were talking about!

I hate all that juvenile crap.

The Grown Up Teenager said...

@janny226 Bahaha, I love offers of chocolate. And I like visiting New York. You guys have some mad awesome shopping, in this Canadian girl's opinion. (We have no Target, my standards are low, k?)

And blogging about your son's preschool is totally different than the situations that set me off. Its something personal to you that affects you. The blog(s) that set off my rant were two bloggers who don't know each other bashing on blogs, Twitter...and it got to a really ridiculous point.

@ Bethany Actually - LOL That word verification made me laugh too. And it sucks that you've been targeted online. You're one of my favourite bloggers!

@ Trenches of Mommyhood - Solidarity, sister. If I wanted to see Mean Girls, I'd watch Lindsay Lohan, not come online. ;)

@ Lost in Splendor - Trust me, you don't wanna know. It'll make you want to bash your head off a solid object.