Can’t We Blogs Just Get Along?
Anyone who’s spent any amount of time reading things online has to have seen a knockdown, drag out fight between two or more blogs. The gift of the written word is something of a blessing and a curse when checking something out like bloggers fighting it out. The real life classic fight in a retail store over the last purse or Tickle-Me-Elmo is nothing compared to the verbal fisticuffs people can engage in online.
Any subject is potentially a boiling pot for this kind of thing. And it all follows the same process, too. Let’s say the subject is Zebras:
-Blog A writes a rather strong opinion on how zebras should totally not have stripes, causing a storm of comments and arguments.
-Blog B, aghast that Blog A would even suggest the fact that zebras should not have stripes, writes about how they totally should and throws in a comment about how Blog A is otherwise foolish for doing so
-Blog A, feigning mock surprise at the fact that their blatantly controversial statement has caused so much of an uproar, writes an apparent clarification post about only zebras in zoos not needing stripes, throwing in a passive-aggressive link and a jab at Blog B.
-Blog B engaged in an extended flame war on Blog A’s comment section, culminating in both blogs claiming victory despite laying verbally bloody and battered on the internet battlefield.
-Blog C posts about zebras, referring to both Blog A and Blog B in turn with the very meaningful argument of “ur mom got owned”.
-Blogs D, E, F, and G create varying posts about Zebragate, with varying degrees of “not touching this shit” and “it’s like watching a trainwreck” posting.
-Blog H compiles a link list of all Blogs posting, subtly shaking their head in disbelief about the state of zebra belief on the Interwebz.
That sounds about right for some of the things I see going on. It’s a little silly that things like this are allowed to go as long as they do. This is mostly because of the fact that blogs don’t realize that until you can Force Choke someone through a monitor, both sides have unlimited verbal ammunition, driven only by the pride that they don’t want to be considered wrong or owned by the majority of the faceless internet. I dunno – fighting a war in which neither side can really die and who can continuously lob grenades and rockets at each other doesn’t seem to be a very productive one to me.
Internet discourse is going to have its fair share of agreement and disagreement. I know I’m a silly idealist, but I am not unrealistic to the point that I don’t think we’ll ever have a place where no one will have heated arguments. Heck, it can be a good thing sometimes. I do just sometimes wish that geekery realized that with great blogging power comes great responsibility – even if that responsibility is knowing when to say that you’ve shouted your opinion to the heavens and that it should stand on its own.
Zebras everywhere, I think, would appreciate it more.