Monday, April 16, 2007

God, I have not updated this blog in ages - partly because I have been too busy, secondly because I have only just recently re-acquirred a reliable internet connection.

Meanwhile I saw this in relation to the topic of blogging. Some may put the guy's dislike of the medium down to the snobbery of the professional elite towards the amateurs, although he does point out the fact that many professional journalists do also have blogs. He does make a few very valid points though on the nature of much online debating. Much of it is little more substantial than the antics of a playground, and you even find the same kind of hierarchy developing on many boards - i.e the cliques, the bullies, the losers who are their victims and the cool and popular. The Graun's own talkboard, Unlimited Talk, is very much of this nature. If anything it was the most unfriendly and hostile site I had ever come accross. But perhaps much of that is due to the nature of internet debate itself. The fact that being behind a computer screen enables one to say things they would not have the audacity to say to somebody in person leaves plenty of scope for abuse. This makes the internet an ideal refuge for immature cowards and bullies. People tend to be less likely to monitor and think over comments they make online than they would be with a more traditional debating forum, so the nature of the comments is far more likely to be flippant. What tends to annoy me more than anything is the way that people tend to make dogmatic statements without thinking them over properly.

8 comments:

The Patriot said...

While the internet may be a refuge for trolls, bullies and losers, that's what you get in a forum where everybody has the right to express themselves without government interference (at least up to this point). I can deal with the idiots; the medium itself isn't conducive to long well thought out discussions. I see that as a byproduct of the short attention spans we have all developed in the digital age. I like your blog, despite your infrequent entries and I'm linking to it on mine.

james higham said...

...the medium itself isn't conducive to long well thought out discussions...

I beg to disagree. That might be so in the American sphere but it certainly isn't in the British. there are some fine blogs on my sidebar.

China Blue said...

It's rare that I find an intelligent debate on the Graun site that hasn't descended into bitching and nastiness. If it's not aimed a the journo who wrote the piece, it's at other users.
Personally, I try not to get involved in the debates very much. As I saw on an other site, 'arguing on the internet is like competing the the special Olympics: you may win, but you'll still be retarded.'

Political Umpire said...

Hello Liz, good to see you back. Quite agree about discussion threads on some of the major sites.

a very public sociologist said...

Thought you were talking about the UKLN for a moment there ;)

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