Okay, had enough now. Time for a good old fashioned brain dump.
I get the whole ‘you’re in your space it’s your rules’ thing that happens on Social media, because I’m there right now preaching this like it’s truth, until the voice at the back of my head that wants to interrupt does just that. Most people assume that not only is everyone basically the same in terms of social behaviour, but that women and men will react to stimulus in the same fashion. It’s just not true, and anyone who believes that should watch the above GIF on repeat until the notion sinks in. That’s two ends of a scale that includes so much variance and subtlety that you will never, EVER understand everyone’s reaction, and it really is not worth trying? Probably not. Oh, and before you start on gender roles? I actually identify more with the Male Orgasm as demonstrated, and not all the flapping (I SAID FLAPPING). So there.
Many decide to react to someone defining terms by immediately pushing the boundaries in an attempt to garner a reaction. I’ve watched a number of people do this in the last week: I’m going to make my feelings known about this in a general sense and then we’ll actually see who’s listening. When people don’t get the reaction they’d hoped? Then the problems start, because if the intent was to start a fight and someone turns up and agrees with you? Where do you go? Very few people will ever have the confidence to directly name and shame a person if they feel their words are wrong, unless they are prepared to back that up with a pretty solid argument to boot. It’s odd that confidence only extends so far: you can get angry, but you won’t follow through. Is it because as human beings we can’t actually feel confident enough when we can’t see a reaction? It doesn’t stop a determined and viscous subset however who will taunt and abuse for all they’re worth, resulting in the only option being blocking and muting.
At what point does someone stop being irritating and start being destructive?
Over time, you will build a picture of a person via social media in the exact same way as would happen with a real person. Except with the virtual you don’t have to worry about BO, flatulence, bad breath or indeed any of the irritants that can often hamper or disable casual acquaintances becoming friends. All you get are words and reactions. It’s often not the big issues where it becomes apparent who you mesh with and who’s to be avoided: it’s the times in-between when people aren’t sharing the collective highs and lows where the cracks begin to show. Then you have a choice: just let the issues ride, or take the person out of the equation. It’s not like you have to work with these people, right?
Well, that’s not 100% true. Some of them may well be people for whom you’d benefit being seen to at least be around, even if you don’t 100% agree with them. And here’s where that whole being a dick thing needs to be reiterated, because even the most decent people on the Planet have the capacity to be wank sometimes. It is human nature that often decides to forget the bad/good in a person, and simply highlight the quality it wants to focus on more. Some people actively play on the ‘I’m a dick but you love me, right?’ mentality and although that might be a benefit at certain points in your life? Eventually even the most tolerant of people are gonna lose the plot.
I’m not a tolerant person right now. When my capacity for understanding is low, I know it’s just easier to walk away than try and deal with the issues, but then they never get solved. Watching other people set their stalls in social media this week and then have others challenge this is all well and good, but then both parties need to decide what actually happens next. Mostly, expecting somebody else to make these kind of decisions for you is, quite frankly, laughable in the extreme. Yes, you can be accommodating and understanding, but if other people choose to publicly ridicule you for this, what’s your position then? Are you prepared to stand and fall by your actions? Really, does any of this actually matter one iota to begin with on a larger stage?
Mostly now I think it is funny, this notion that if you say the right things and use the right combination of factors or simply scream NOTICE ME SENPAI that you can even in some tiny, insignificant way, control the Internet. Mostly it’s looking at the people who decide ‘I’m going to take this very private act of thinking and do it really publicly right in front of you because I fucking well can, and you can’t stop me’ and realising that, for some people this is roughly akin to actually pleasuring themselves in public. With an audience, with the means by which they can milk ever second of pleasure from the act, with no though of the consequences of their actions.
Put it away, people. Keep your brains fit and healthy, sure, but if you keep doing this you’ll be utterly desensitised to the experience of normal relationships and never be able to form a worthwhile one again. Mostly? Think before you open your mouths, and read carefully before you press Tweet.
Okay, better now.