The Spectacle Blog

Facebook Is for Rude Cowards

By on 4.11.13 | 8:22AM

Not all technological advancements mark progress, as it turns out that such social networking services as Facebook and Twitter are actually causing civilized people to act more and more like barbarians.

Corporate training firm VitalSmarts recently conducted a survey that found that, (from Reuters):

As social media usage surges…so has incivility, with 78 percent of 2,698 people reporting an increase in rudeness online with people having no qualms about being less polite virtually than in person.

One in five people have reduced their face-to-face contact with someone they know in real life after an online run-in.

Joseph Grenny, co-chairman of VitalSmarts, explained the phenomenon: “The world has changed and a significant proportion of relationships happen online, but manners haven't caught up with technology.”

Manners haven’t “caught up”?! Where did they go? Why did they lag behind? Are manners really something you forget to bring with you sometimes? Is there something about the “virtual” world that turns men into savages? No, savages are fearless, and Facebookers and Tweeple wouldn’t dare voice their beef in real life. Perhaps they are unfeeling android people? Exposure to modern culture leads me to posit this as the plausible case.

Rudeness on so-called “social media” is just the tip of this culture killer’s iceberg. Reuters went on:

Survey respondents had their own stories such as a family not talking for two years after an online row when one man posted an embarrassing photo of his sister and refused to remove it, instead blasting it to all his contacts.

Technology stinks. Such a situation would not have existed 50 or even 10 years ago! What a silly and awful world we live in. Facebook advocates claim that the device is useful for “staying in touch” and “reconnecting,” but if your relationship were really so important and meaningful, why did you lose contact in the first place? Why are you still in touch with 400 other people, the particulars of whose lives you know about in mind-numbing detail?

If you insist on wasting hours of your life mindlessly absorbing other people’s lives, be nice about it. It’s easy to be ferocious when your existence is computerized (hence this angry blog post), but C-3PO was the essence of politeness!

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