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Users are increasingly taking their anger, rage, and psychotic urges online.
The online community is increasingly becoming a place where users vent their psychotic urges and frustrations at the world

Ever seen a long raving profanity-laden tirade on a website?  Well, if you're not new to the internet the answer is surely, yes.  Virtually every website that accepts unfiltered comments (including DailyTech) has seen some of these posts.  And they aren't just people casually casting about expletives.  These people are angry, and ready to vent.

People, in increasing numbers, are headed to the internet to vent their rage, signs indicate.  Road rage has been replaced by web rage -- a new form of public antipathy for the twenty-first century.  While this is evident in the descent into name-calling and petty aspersions on many a site, it is also evidenced by the rise of sites specially dedicated to users expressing their anger at the world.

Among these are mybiggestcomplaint.com and justrage.com, which contains eloquent musings such as one user's comment, "I don't give a flying f***, so f*** you".

From Benjamin Franklin to Letitia Baldrige, etiquette experts of the past must be turning over in their graves at some of the online activity.  The internet frequently descends from a glowing urban paradise to a dark dank alleyway.  States Sara Black, a professor of health studies at St. Joseph's University, who studies the rise of online bullying, "The Internet can be a great tool.  Like any tool, it can also be misused."

One key incentive that drives users to vent online is the anonymity the internet provides.  Describes Lesley Withers, a professor of communication at Central Michigan University, "In the [pre-Internet era], you had to take ownership [of your remarks]. Now there's a perception of anonymity.  People think what they say won't have repercussions, and they don't think they have to soften their comments."

University of Texas psychology professor Art Markman says the removal of body language and facial expressions from communication leads to a descent into the darker side of human emotion.  He states, "It's hard to be aggressive when you're face to face.  A lot of times, real anger is an attempt to get control over a situation where the person doesn't usually have it."

Indeed people attempt to lash out at blog posts they disagree with or even their fellow commenters’ opinions, though they have little hope of changing the posting.  Social observers liken these power games to the ones played by children and teens at schools.  Cheryl Dellasega, a Penn State women's studies professor describes how children and adults alike are turning the online community into a new site of bullying

She proclaims, "Girls who are getting teased come home and let their [aggressors] have it by putting something on their blog and starting a rumor campaign.  [And the rumors,] they go out to a much bigger group, a worldwide group. The impact is devastating, and it's as easy as clicking a button.  Kids don't realize that one post can destroy somebody's life forever."

Indeed lives have been lost to online bullying, such as Megan Meier, who committed suicide after a neighborhood bully invented a fake male persona and then used it to torment her, finally convincing her to kill herself.

In August, The New York Times ran a story on trolling.  According to the magazine, trolls post insulting comment for "lulz".  States one ex-troll in the piece, "Lulz is watching someone lose their mind at their computer 2,000 miles away while you chat with friends and laugh."

Even respectable adults are losing their composure on the internet.  A Japanese woman murdered her husband's online avatar after he divorced her.  A South Korean actress committed suicide over online rumors. 

Is there an end in sight for online rage?  Well certainly not until the latest election's results are in and long since overflowing with discussion (and tirades).  However, for the long run most experts agree there's relatively little that can be done to quash online anger, other than better parenting, and an emphasis on polite behavior online as children develop.

The problem is not new, explains psychiatrist Dr. Terry Eagan, medical director of the Moonview Sanctuary in Santa Monica, California.  He states, "Some people are just bitter and angry.  Sometimes, they're against everyone, other times against a specific group. That person can get really stimulated and can say all sorts of horrible things. But I don't think it's not like they didn't exist before.  I tell patients that I'd rather know everything about people; information is powerful.  When the climate of the world is more fear-based, it permeates everything."



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The loss of morality and culture.
By mikefarinha on 11/4/2008 11:14:52 AM , Rating: 2
I think these are all a symptoms of the bigger problem, the loss of a shared morality and culture in our society.

The biggest challenge people face isn't how many freedoms we can achieve for those most perverted among us, but how much can we restrain ourselves from our desires. Freedom isn't just an American right, it is also a life-long challenge in self-control.

I know I'm posting this in the interwebs and the tubes just might get clogged from what I'm about to say but I think that the proliferation and acceptance of things like pornography, sodomy, anger, anonymity, and lack of honor and conviction have been taking a toll on our culture and are now starting to manifest themselves into more public displays. This is quite damaging, and perhaps irreversible without revolution.

In human history societal order is long and difficult to achieve, and quick and easy to lose.

Karl Marx once said that Democracy is the path to Communism. I think that it can also be said unequivocally that Communism is the path to a Dictatorship.

I think that this election today is a either a step closer to socialism which is a step closer to communism which is a step closer to a Dictatorship; or it is a choice to remain grounded in our state of Democracy.




RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By Motoman on 11/4/08, Rating: -1
By FITCamaro on 11/4/2008 11:57:04 AM , Rating: 2
Everything he says in that post is the exact opposite of what a hippy would say.


By mikefarinha on 11/4/2008 1:27:58 PM , Rating: 1
I think you are replying to the wrong post...


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By MrBlastman on 11/4/2008 11:28:08 AM , Rating: 2
For once I actually agree with you. :)


By mikefarinha on 11/4/2008 1:44:06 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't it feel good to be right for a change?

:p


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By Yawgm0th on 11/4/2008 3:10:08 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, well f*** you, buddy.


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By Dark Legion on 11/5/2008 7:20:17 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not your buddy, friend.


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By DPigs on 11/5/2008 12:11:22 PM , Rating: 2
He's not your friend, guy!


By JonnyDough on 11/6/2008 10:52:36 AM , Rating: 2
How do you know he's a guy, earthling?


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By ikkeman2 on 11/5/2008 3:19:09 AM , Rating: 1
not that I agree with you, but lets take your argument to it's logical extreme:

So to ward off a dictatorship, we'd have to abolish democracy??? Sounds like a great plan.
Also, I've only heard the concept of social revolution in one direction - the glorious state of communism.

Seriously; Communism is as likely to lead to a dictatorship as capitalism is. The only difference is the route taken.

Communism assumes all poeple to be equal and to have equal rights to oppertunities. Most oppertunities stem from society - schooling, health care and housing, transportation- No man can provide these for himself, and thus they should be equaly accessable to all.
Offcourse, there's always one person that doesn't play well with others and abuses the system for his own benefit. Communism is defeated because it trusts in poeple's ability to work together and share.
(russia was never (or only very briefly) a communism! - leninism and stalinism)

Capitalism states no man is equal. To gain a right you must earn that right... Natural selection in society. so far so good.
However, who determines when a right is earned? That person has power and will not choose based on objective evaluation, but subjective preferences (you don't award the most capable , you award in your own interest) - and the system becomes about who, not what. Thus capitalism defeats itself because it assumes poeple are honest and altruistic.

So what's left - Feudalism ofcourse. Let poeple abuse the power they gain illigitemately as much as they dare. you only need a few french revolutions - chopping off all the heads above menial labour level to get some new blood to the upper echelons!
What a Glorious future that'll be!

any gender could be reversed: him>her, his>hers, he>she

Oh, and Fuck you Fucking Fuckers!


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By mikefarinha on 11/5/2008 10:49:06 AM , Rating: 2
OK, show me where I can witness Communism Sans-Dictator.

Also, you are inserting the word Capitalism where I said Democracy, thus you are misrepresenting my argument so suit yours.


RE: The loss of morality and culture.
By Drexial on 11/6/2008 2:01:18 PM , Rating: 2
Well considering communism is more of an economic ideology then a political one. Comparing Democracy to Communism doesn't really work. You can have democracy and Communism. You can have Anarcho-communism, you can have a more common Dictatorial Communism. Communism is about socioeconomic classes, not about how the representatives are chosen. The comparison you are making should be more directly Democracy to Dictatorship. Communism isn't a political ideology on its own, there has to be a political header with a communist subsystem.

Comparing Communism to Capitalism is spot on.


By mikefarinha on 11/7/2008 1:36:16 AM , Rating: 2
Communism is a entanglement of both government and the economy. So you can compare communism to both democracy and capitalism.

Per Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto you cannot have both democracy and communism. He explicitly states that democracy leads to communism.

You are mistaken on your understanding of communism.


By Eris23007 on 11/10/2008 8:44:47 PM , Rating: 2
Your understanding of the theories underlying capitalism and communism are flawed.

quote:
Communism assumes all poeple to be equal and to have equal rights to oppertunities. Most oppertunities stem from society - schooling, health care and housing, transportation- No man can provide these for himself, and thus they should be equaly accessable to all.
Offcourse, there's always one person that doesn't play well with others and abuses the system for his own benefit. Communism is defeated because it trusts in poeple's ability to work together and share.
(russia was never (or only very briefly) a communism! - leninism and stalinism)


No. Communism is not about equality of opportunity, communism is about equality of outcome - no matter the talent, capabilities, or other unique facets of the individual, all individuals are guaranteed the same outcome - everyone gets the same ration of food, everyone gets the same quality of place to live, etc.

No man can provide himself with schooling, transportation, or a house to live in? What about the man who cuts down trees and builds himself a house, or domesticates a wild animal upon which to ride? What about the woman who chooses to spend her time reading about math and physics while everyone else is doing nothing?

Communism isn't defeated because it trusts in poeple's ability to work together and share. Communism is defeated because PEOPLE ARE NOT EQUAL IN CAPABILITY. IQ is a bell curve. Some people work harder than others. So long as not every person has exactly the same capabilities as everyone else, Communism will continue to fail.

quote:


Capitalism states no man is equal. To gain a right you must earn that right... Natural selection in society. so far so good.
However, who determines when a right is earned? That person has power and will not choose based on objective evaluation, but subjective preferences (you don't award the most capable , you award in your own interest) - and the system becomes about who, not what. Thus capitalism defeats itself because it assumes poeple are honest and altruistic.


Again false. Capitalism is in fact the system based upon equality of opportunity - every person has the opportunity to use their natural abilities to achieve greater economic success for themselves and whomever else they choose. Outcomes are simply not guaranteed. Thus those with greater abilities generally observer greater success.

Capitalism is not defeated and has not been defeated. Its efficiency is somewhat impacted because of the power-sharing issues you describe.

Capitalism also does not assume honest or altruism. It assumes rational, big-picture self-interest on the part of all participants.

Where Capitalism is challenged is that people are not inherently big-picture thinkers. People are very good at rational short-term self-interest; it's the long term thing that kills them. This is the fundamental cause behind our economic turmoil right now.

Capitalism will continue to win out in the end because it comes the closest to sustainability overall while improving the lives of the majority of the participants. The smartest thing that we as a society can do is to establish incentives that leverage the power of capitalism to reward long-term rational decision-making HIGHER than short-term rational decision-making.

I'll pass on the required profanity as I'm writing this from a company computer (off the clock though, of course). Weak, I know. But I'll revisit the post later :-)


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