Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Haters

The college sports world hit the new again tonight when a college hoops prospect decided he was going to choose his college this week.  The schools he'd narrowed his choices down to? UNLV and Oregon.

No big deal, right?

(Especially for readers of this blog.  Get to it, DaveyPants.)

Well, on Twitter it was a big deal.  Fans of the current champion Kentucky Wildcats assaulted the prospect's Twitter account.  "F*ck you!" They @replied him.  "I only hope the worst for you."  It was ugly.  And I only chose the easiest tweets to post.

But (aha, here comes the point), behavior like this is widespread across the internet. Look at any Amazon page and read some of the bad reviews.  While they are rarely curse laden, because Amazon screens, some are filled with hatred toward the author.  Anonymous comments on blogs lash out at people they don't agree with.  Look at any news article or blog post on teachers.  These posts are filled with thoughtlessness.  Cruelty. 

What do these people get out of this?  Hiding behind their internet screen names, they can say what they want and expect to be consequence free.  And most of these people aren't teens being teens.  They are mature adults who hold good jobs.

It's all about two things.  Power and entitlement.

Power:  People get a kick out of being able to say what they want directly to someone.  And when their view of that person or that person's work is negative, it becomes even easier.  It is very difficult to compliment someone.  A lot easier to bash and let every emotion they feel out toward that person.  Feels good, doesn't it?

Entitlement:  Now that the internet exists, people feel they deserve everything.  I spent 99 cents on this book.  I spent 9.99 on this book.  I deserve everything I buy to be GOOD.  I should agree with everything someone says.  My team should have the best players on the planet EVERY YEAR.

People need to think.  You wouldn't say this stuff if the author was sitting right next to you.  If the 18 year old kid making one of the biggest decisions of his life was standing in front of you.

So, don't do it now.

Even if you're on the 'net, hiding behind a fake name, be a human.


Al Tucher said...

The hatred of teachers is especially striking. Many commentators are unshakably convinced that teachers work 8:00-3:00 and loaf all summer, but that doesn't explain the depth of the hostility. I'm not sure what does.

Anonymous said...

Hey, screw you Whi . . . wait a minute, I agree with you. Well, OK, but your picture is still funny looking.

Anonymous said...