Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Does the ANONYMITY of the Internet aid and abet rudeness

Remember that TV program, Kids Say the Darndest Things? Well, the more that I use the internet, the more apparent it has become that people in general can and will say the darndest things especially with the anonymity of the internet.

After personally hosting a number of Squidoo Hey Monkeybrain debates and having included guestbooks on many of my lenses, I'm happy to say that people do indeed say the darndest things! And the darndest things that people say can be downright rude and crass!

It was recently that I received an interesting and brief guestbook message ... 2 words ... the first begins with an "F" ends with a "K" and the second word was me, well "You." Get it? Well, it seems that I am not alone as the only Squidoo lensmaster receiving these type of rude, crass guestbook remarks in addition to others.

Take lensmaster Janet21 for example ... she received a different type of 'rude' guestbook remark: $328 --- that's your idea of "making a living". And you're no. 1??? Not a very good adverstisement for Squidoo, I must say.

Lensmaster kab recently started a SquidU Forum thread: Don't even 14 year olds get tired of leaving rude and pointless comments on lenses and other websites? My lens Did Atlantis Really Exist, just got three comments: 1. f-- atlantis and f-- u if u read this sh-- 2. no atlantis does not exist u damn b-- f-- all of u u could suck my c-- 3. f-- you.

The rude remarks have been also directed at Squidoo from other social-network sites such as StumbleUpon and wis.dm. It seems that one if not more Squidoo lensmasters got a bit carried away with their 'passion' about Squidoo and their lenses and added too many links to their lenses on those two sites. As a consequence, lensmasters such as myself got inadvertantly and rather rudely labeled as social members who didn't care about those social-network sites as much as we do about Squidoo. And, other NOT so nice things were said ... ah -- again the anonymity of the internet. At the moment, I can't speak for Twitter, as I've not gotten firsthand knowledge of similar circumstances.

Bottomline: While the internet may provide a sense of anonymity to forum and guestbook posters who make drive-by rude and crass remarks, IPs are traceable. And, perhaps the bigger picture, I believe in a sense of karma ... what goes around, comes around. --JaguarJulie.