Who are your friends?
It’s a question that should be asked again, now the Internet is underway and mankind has morphed around its powers, twisting bodies into huddled, comfortable little blobs that love to interconnect by cyberchat. Who are we connecting with?
Now we don’t, though, just align with people on the Internet, we align with groups, causes. And even though a world of information is immediately available, we don’t need more than a meme to make important choices. Friends, charities worth my money and time, celebrity action, political antics, all at our fingertips, often with a hot handle so you can talk with an astronaut or gardening expert in real time … or just follow them. Once your computer is broken in, you’ve designed more than just a music library; you’ve got a library of bookmarks, handles, experts and heroes, too many to count! But you know, for some reason, you friended them!
All to be called upon. None you’ve ever met in person. Sometimes you don’t even know if they’re men or women!
Here are some tips on who to avoid!
Years ago, my mom thought the Internet would bring problems we couldn’t (at that time) imagine. I think she was right!
Small, unpopular, radical, fringe and even dangerous groups find “friends” they’d never have otherwise known existed, while others use paid propaganda, stringing together tablet computers in labs to blitz and manipulate social media (especially pre-Musk Twitter).
The new element is the Internet.
As a result, large voices are sometimes coming from dust. Complainers are mentally-ill people who need a friend, a group that would accept them, not experts on constitutional law or international relations. But they chime in, calling Trump a loser and you a who-knows-what.
It’s only becoming more and more obvious, as these shallow internet posers are extremely consistent – they do not NEED facts in order to create chaos; tablets on, blitz, DONE. All they need is to name-call, insult, draw attention to their (often odd) point of view, and APPEAR to be popular. It’s extremely telltale if the person just agrees, just insults, but never utters a reference or fact (because they have none). It’s also telltale if they have a small number of followers or if their account has not existed for a long time.
While there are real issues, real weirdos, and while Newsom and others will probably let more criminals out of jail for more insane reasons, the gravity of reality has to be weighed, because sometimes you’re face-to-face with nothing but puffiness. I know a gentleman who’s rabidly, fiercely, obnoxiously liberal in a conversation, who just yesterday commented on the recent news story of five black police officers beating to death a black suspect … and this person commented, without blinking, that he decided not to watch the video (as if virtuous), but he still had an opinion. What’s really mind-boggling is not that people are lazy, it’s that they’re so committed, they actively refuse to even listen to any facts, because it will ruin their game.
But I think the real point to be made is, they’re not as numerous as it may seem. I always strongly recommend using tools provided on social media to mute, block, and report.
Be careful out there!
Mark Urso is a former hippie who sees ideology today is divided not by political party or leaning, but by right versus wrong. A 1984 graduate of Boston College, Urso wrote news daily for 25-years, contributing stories regularly to AP, and hosted a live one-hour radio show with daily guests ranging from the annual cat show organizer to senators and celebrities. He can be found at Quora (3.8m views) and markurso.com.