Anonymous anger on the Internet – WTF!

There’s a whole world of people out there, and boy, are they pissed off. The anonymity of the Internet encourages online ranting, from election-season tirades to mockery of celebrities.

On political blogs, the invective flies. Posters respond to the latest celebrity gossip with mockery or worse. Sports fans set up Web sites with names that begin with “fire,” hoping coaches, athletic directors and sportscasters lose their jobs.

And though there are any number of bloggers and commenters who attempt to keep their postings and responses on a civil level, all too often interactive Web sites descend into ad hominem attacks, insults and plain old name-calling. Indeed, there are even whole sites devoted to venting, such as justrage.com (one screed there was titled, “I don’t give a flying f***, so f*** you”) and mybiggestcomplaint.com…

One reason for the vitriol that emerges on the Web, experts say, is the anonymity the Internet provides. Commenters seldom use their real names, and even if they do, the chance for retaliation is slim…


“A lot of times, real anger is an attempt to get control over a situation where the person doesn’t usually have it,” he said. In that respect, comments to blog posts are attempts to strike back…

Some people are just bitter and angry,” said psychiatrist Dr. Terry Eagan, medical director of the Moonview Sanctuary in Santa Monica, California. “Sometimes, they’re against everyone, other times against a specific group. That person can get really stimulated and can say all sorts of horrible things. But I don’t think it’s not like they didn’t exist before.”

Whether the problem will get control of us, or we will get control of the problem, is in the way we face up to it, he says. Anger, he says, is rolled up with anxiety and fear, and nothing creates more fear like a lack of understanding.

Good thing we never experience anything like that around here, eh?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.