Sunday, December 26, 2004

Anonymous Commentators

Everyone who writes a weblog, can be as anonymous as he or she wants. They write about their view of the world, which not surprisingly, contrasts with many other people's. Weblogs have created a forum of exchange, between people who usually would have never entered into conversation with each other. Basically, it widens horizons...of course, only to the extent someone wants to widen their horizons. Nevertheless, the possiblity and opportunity are there.

I often jump from one blog to another, snowballing from links left by commentators, or by posters alike. It's also interesting to read the comments at one's own blog. It lets you know that someone is out there virtually "listening" to you, agreeing with you, or perhaps offering you a point of view or argument you hadn't considered. Basically, blogging and surfing blogs can be an encouraging social and informative experience.

However, there is a group of people who almost want to sabotage this exchange. They post nasty comments, and don't even have the guts to stand to their opinions, preferring to remain anonymous. Here is a collection of a few of these comments:

Found at Trying to Grok:
"[...]someone as fucktard-dumb as you." Now, this guy really wanted to hide his cowardice, by giving a false email address: The domain isn't even registered...alternately, he probably thought he was being really witty. However, I love that word's up there with cheese-dick, and numb-nuts. To the commentator's credit, he did leave his view of things...but not without insulting the blogger.

Found at Sminklemeyer:
You are just cannon fodder there in Iraq, nobody cares about what you think and what you feel.
Okay, this one is real creative...the whole I am on your side, when I protest this war by calling you a mindless killerbot.

Another one along a similar vein was found at Buffbabe220:
...kill any kids or old ladies today?
Really classy, that is...

And this cowardice knows no allegience....I was over at Liberal Patriots, and found a heated exchange between some anonymous commentator(s) and the poster, the Progressive Patriot:
Anonymous: You are a fucking idiot.
Progressive Patriot: You represent 99% of the right-wing...too god-damned much of a coward to post with a name. Now, go enlist you spineless punk....Bushitler needs more meat in the Iraq grinder.
Although I disagree with P.P.s response, I have to agree with the "spineless punk" comment.

I think everyone benefits from constructive criticism, but this is far from constructive. This is just plain destructive. Basically all these anonymous posters have one thing in common: they are trying to stand in the way of exchange of ideas. They are, for lack of a better word, terrorizing those who dare to express their points of view. They are trying to silence people who disagree with their view of things.

This really made me think: we are always trying to shield others from our opinions. I was talking with a friend, and she said, she never speaks about religion or politics with other people, because it is too enflammatory. Well, I agree to a certain extent. You shouldn't force your opinions on others, however, how are we supposed to progress if we don't exchange ideas and opinions? How are we going to learn tolerance and acceptance, if we are never confronted with things that might enflame us? I don't want to sound all hoo-ah, but despite all the destructive comments, we who dare stick our necks out and express our opinions, shouldn't give up. And we have much more in common than our differing world views might suggest.

Update: Sminklemeyer has a great post blasting an anonymous commentator at his site.


Blogger ac blue eagle said...

There are good people, and there are bad people in the world. As a newspaper reporter for many years, I wrote about both. One day, however, it struck me: if there weren't any bad people around, the good people wouldn't have anything to do.
So, while I don't like the bad people, I don't mind them near as much. You are one of the good people, and you are doing good.

7:56 PM  

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