October 31, 2013

Reasonable Reactions?

Internet brings us riches and fortune, mostly in the form of knowledge, or it should at least. Last week I unfortunately spent some time on the internet in specific places that had a negative impact on my view on human-beings and mostly the Dutch society as a whole. For it seems some are not using the internet for interactions or broadening their knowledge but instead try to reinforce their superficial knowledge on topics of which they cannot begin to comprehend the reality.
Somewhere I read that superficial knowledge is more dangerous than ignorance and this become very apparent last week. I will not discuss the topics but instead the reactions to keep it short, hopefully.

The first topic is about a problem(!) that is clearly there and people concerned about it, most of who are also the victims, are suddenly seen as the bullies and are now being further victimised by some short-sighted folks. A solution is very simple, but apparently there is something attached to the very core of peoples' being that has them frightened to even look in the direction of change.
But here is the point, what happens is polarisation. It seems that the internet hosts two teams and people are either in one or the other, there is no grey zone. So what happens on the likes of Twitter, Facebook and other media is that a person instead of looking into the topic themselves, picks a side and simple starts supporting the opinions and arguments from that side and hence a new truth is created. I saw very little talking and interactions. I did see a lot of screaming and singing through somebody else's speech. In the end few are talking about a solution. What it did reveal were apparent deep rooted emotions and opinions I hoped, naively would have softened by time.

The other thing was actually something that was not such a big deal at all. But it was completely blown out of proportion by the internet(read: people). The people affected by it did not care because there was in fact very little to care about, but others took to the stage and drew their own conclusions and suddenly there was a lot of rage. Specific topics and opinions were voiced and formed. Suddenly a lot of other problems were discussed and it dealt with problems that are apparent more or less still a bit of a taboo. So essentially, the original problem was simply used as a tool to ignite other discussion and although it was not all fair, some problems that need attention get to be discussed.

Although both topics generated a snowball effect of reactions, the ones to the first topic are rather frightening. What happened there was that people started to form groups to strengthen their position and suddenly others were being made fun of and insulting comments were no longer a problem, which in fact proved that there is a problem. The reactions of the media and politicians who waved it away as something trivial did not help either, nor did the so-called celebrities that set bad examples. In the case of the second topic I thought that although valid concerns were voiced the way it happened did not aim for progress and made people look a bit bad instead. The intention was good but the message a bit harsh.

It all made me feel rather angry which made me scream just a little too, so I decided instead to help improve the situation by looking into a way of realising the solution. It seems useless to try and talk sense into some people so I can only show them by doing something positive.

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