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Ghost Whistler vs the Internet

Over many years I've been online and one thing I've noticed; the internet is an awful place for conversation.

Don't get me wrong, I think as a source of information and even opinion it's superb. There are many positive aspects to this technology, which is good since nothing I do or say will get rid of it! Not that I want to.

The problem is message forums. I don't know what it is but I have managed to cross almost every single forum I have been on. Not deliberately, you understand; but the nature of the medium makes it impossible to discern honest intention and to differentiate between that and dishonesty.

But by far the worst aspect are the cliques that form. Even on places that profess to be more open minded, or to oppose accepted norms and values, such as capitalism. These forums will still be governed by prevailing attitudes determined by a clique who will refuse to extend the slightest charity when interacting with someone new or someone different.

There is also a curious phenomenon wherein those who are subsequently marginalised will be unable to respond in any way to defend their position. If they try this will be taken as evidence they are lying, because well he would say that, wouldn't he!

I don't think we see this in real life. Talk to someone for real and you have to acknowledge their presence in all aspects. They might be in your face. At the vbery least they will be right there talking to dyou, and that demands respect. It's a lot harder to bullshit to someone's face, than through a series of pixels. Tell someone to their face they are a liar and see what happens.

The internet has sanitised that vital aspect of communication and thus made it easier for people on forums to create vapid echo chambers wherein dissenting opinions, regarldess of evidence, can be silenced. It has become easier to dismiss someone who may simply have misspoken, or someone like me who finds communication difficult.

I can write text, I can put words together (you may disagree of course), but the problem individuals like myself have is that we have to dwecode our own thoughts. There is a cypher, created by cogonitive (dys)function, that takes what we intend to say and translates it, through the very same language, into something we may not. The problem with that is that we don't know this is happening. When input into forum converation there are no allowances made for this and attempts to explain are ignored. Again this is because people do not extend charity or courtesy online as they must in person because real human presence demands this.

Finally the last corrupting facotr is the prevailing cultural values that seem to find a home online. Currently there seems to be a backlash against progressive values and understanding. Advocates of these values are deemed regressive and examples of fringe or outlier behaviour are proferred as justification for intolerance. These people make no sense to me. What is wrong with tolerance, compassions, respect or courtesy? Why is the assumption that, when someone seems to mispeak, it can't be because he might have a cognitive impariment or anomaly? Why is it that they are instead deemed ot have subscribed to a regressive ideology? What in fact is regressive abotu this other than to limit people's ability, if not desire, to behave like an asshole to others? Why is it assumed that such cognitive anomalies are instead just loony left excuses for laziness?

I can't deal with people that think like this. To me racism, misogyny, and other oppressive social structures must be challenged. Why would anyone want to adhere to them. The answer is simple: because they benefit, directly or indrectly, consciously or otherwise, from the privilege offered. Why else do people object to Black Lives Matter, or feminism, or...whatever? We all benefit from supporting these efforts to dismantle established hierarchies. Even those who think they don't.

Unfortunately the internet is full of people who climb inside to have their conditioning reinforced and their prejudices pandered to. We are all raised within a certain culture and that includes submitting to the propaganda we've heard all our lives, and thus normalising and rationalising those values. There's nothing difficult about that and it is nobodies fault for how they are raised. But there must come a time when we challenge these views. It is sad that efforts, including my own, to understand these structures and to learn about what they are have been marked by dealing with some of the most intolerable and repugnant people I've ever come across who are every bit as unpleasant as those they criticise.


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