The Nerve of Some People

It never ceases to amaze me how rude some people can be online.

Although I don’t closely follow any one blog closely, I do tend to read posts I stumble upon — including the comments left by other readers. And it never ceases to amaze me how incredibly rude some blog commenters can be.

What is it with people? Can’t they read a blog entry for what it is — a personal view of a particular topic?

Yes, I said personal view. That means a view formed, in part, by opinion.

Today, I read a post on a blog where someone commented in brief about the new features of Mac OS X Leopard. His comments were generally positive, but certainly not the comments of a “fan boy.” The first commenter attacked by saying that Leopard was a Vista rip-off and had absolutely nothing in it that couldn’t be found in Vista, which was a far superior OS. But rather than say this in the spirit of friendly debate, he went on the attack, rudely contradicting and belittling everything the blogger had to say.

Later today, I read a post by a blogger who made some negative comments about George Bush and the Iraq War. These were comments I’ve read in many other places, opinions that are shared by millions of people worldwide. Yet the first commenter went on the attack, presenting a laundry list of fallacies that he intended to prove that the blogger was wrong. Again, his comments were rudely presented, meant to belittle the blogger on his own blog.

Earlier today, I wrote a blog post about why I won’t be buying an iPhone. That post immediately attracted comments suggesting that I was stupid to be a Verizon customer, that AT&T was a far superior company than Verizon, and that no one cared about whether I bought an iPhone. Some of these comments were obviously written to make me look like a fool.

On my own blog.

What I can’t figure out is why. Why would someone take the time to bash a stranger for voicing an opinion?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: When you visit a person’s blog, it’s like stepping into their living room. Use some manners when you have something to say.

The blogosphere is filled with hate — people going out of their way to be nasty and spiteful to other people. Why? It’s so completely unproductive and, frankly, it makes these nasty people look like a bunch of stupid, rude SOBs.

I’m not saying that commenters shouldn’t voice opposing opinions. I’m just saying that they should do so with a certain amount of restraint. Kindness gets you a lot farther in this world than a bad attitude ever will.

And for heaven’s sake, if you have a constant need to post nasty comments on other people’s blogs, take a few days off to cool down. You need a break. You need to mellow out. You need to find your life and get back to it. And you need to grow up and stop acting like a spoiled child.

5 thoughts on “The Nerve of Some People

  1. Yup, that happens a lot. I think it’s because people (even including their nicknames or shortnames, or whatever) feel themselves anonymous. There’s a colleague of mine, an anthropologist, that is doing research precisely on that subject. The (semi) anonymaty that internet allows is a great escape for anger and frustration. In fact, his results indicate that people who act like that are *normally* (but not always) the ones that have problems expressing themselves on a day to day basis, the ones who cannot defend their own point of view then, either because they don’t know how, or because they are subordinates to many other people…

    Anyway, like you, it always appalls me that people don’t understand that a blog is a personal place. It usually contains different opinions. Those should be used to make you think, not to make you bark.

    On my side, I must say that what I like about yours is exactly that: your blog makes me think. I don’t have to agree with you. I actually hope not to agree with everything you say.

    Maria, take this as a compliment: I live several km from you (in Portugal) and I don’t know you at all, except from this blog. But my attention was grabbed and that is great. :)

  2. Maria,

    I agree with your opinion about rude people. The operative word in your post was ‘manners’. There appears to be a great lack of respect and consideration of others. We see this in road rage incidents, incidents in schools and in public places. How often do you see someone open a door for another, or even say ‘thank you’.

  3. I quite agree. Not only are there rude posts against the blogger, but eventually people start attacking the posts themselves, and the everything turns into hate posts.

What do you think?