Author Topic: Racism and the Internet  (Read 1666 times)

Queensryche

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Racism and the Internet
« on: November 07, 2011, 09:25:56 PM »
So I got into a debate with my dad today on the phone because we were talking about how 20 years ago, Magic Johnson announced he was HIV positive. He said that he couldn't believe the racist comments being made by people over the Internet about it and that they were just losers trying to shock people. Being more of an Internet user than he is, I expressed the view that no, a lot of the time people who say racist/misogynist/etc. things on the Internet actually believe their words because they believe the Internet gives them anonymity and an open forum to spout off their venomous and sickening beliefs. This view stunned him and we debated about it.

I honestly believe that the Internet in certain venues shows exactly how many people out there are disgusting animals and how far we have to go to truly being tolerant as a whole. And it's not just message boards. I actually witnessed a browser-based webgame get infiltrated by members of Stormfront.org (a neo-Nazi website, for those that don't know) and them attempting to recruit people to their cause. Thankfully they got exposed and were chased off, but I know it has and is happening elsewhere.

Is my view too pessimistic that the Internet shows how people really think? Or is my dad being too much of an optimist about mankind in general?
« Last Edit: November 08, 2011, 06:05:23 AM by Queensryche »

Offline CreedP

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2011, 06:49:56 AM »
The Internet lets people make hateful nasty comments while hiding behind anonymity.  Maybe they wouldn't dare drop an N-bomb in the presence of black people, but go on line and they'll let it fly.   Or maybe they wouldn't call people names or degrade them when they might have to face consequences, or have co-workers/fellow students/friends look down on them for what they said -- but log into a chatroom as "yourmom69" and all that negativity can fly out, enhanced with things they wouldn't normally say.  Or maybe they just like getting a rise out of people, 'trolling' just to make people angry.  At the end of the day, they sign off and go back to their lives, unaffected by the results of their words and actions.

Also, I think the change in society is just very evident these days.  When my grandparents and parents grew up, they were taught respect, kindness, and such important values.  They feared going to hell and it was additional motivation to try and do the right thing.  Nowadays, a lot of people aren't taught these values and behaviors - they look out only for themselves, don't bother with random acts of kindness, or will push people out of the way (so to speak, though literally if the need arises) to get what they want.  And a lot of people expect to go to hell, they're just trying to helping drive the bus.  :)

Frankly, I'm just waiting for 2012, the zombie apocalypse, or whatever it is that finally thins out the herd.  I'd rather see a society that has to rebuild and has a reason to rise above, instead of ... well, watching Idiocracy as a prophecy.  lol

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Offline wildmage

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2011, 07:23:07 AM »
Unfortunately Idiocracy is a correct prediction of our future, they just have the time frame wrong. That movie looked 500 years into the future, it will take less than 100 years and probably only 50 years to get most of the way there. A societal collapse is imminent, but who will survive and rebuild will be the question. If we are to rely on the current young generation than all is lost and humanity becomes a footnote in history.
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Offline Turd Ferguson

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2011, 12:41:47 PM »
Most people who say that kind of stuff on the internet are trolling to intentionally upset people for lulz.

Offline LordFa9

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2012, 09:40:01 AM »
The Internet lets people make hateful nasty comments while hiding behind anonymity.  Maybe they wouldn't dare drop an N-bomb in the presence of black people, but go on line and they'll let it fly.   Or maybe they wouldn't call people names or degrade them when they might have to face consequences, or have co-workers/fellow students/friends look down on them for what they said -- but log into a chatroom as "yourmom69" and all that negativity can fly out, enhanced with things they wouldn't normally say.  Or maybe they just like getting a rise out of people, 'trolling' just to make people angry.  At the end of the day, they sign off and go back to their lives, unaffected by the results of their words and actions.

highlighted for truth

though odds are its just an outlet for people to vent frustrations that they already have. You'd never use the N word in front of a black guy because you'd get your face pounded in and NOBODY would feel sorry for you. But if you hate black people for some reason (real or imagined) the internet is just perfect to vent.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2012, 09:46:52 AM by LordFa9 »
WARNING: The above post is highly likely to be interpreted as a complaint or a show of ingratitude towards the RDPC. Read at own risk; viewer discretion is advised.

Offline HalfBadger

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2012, 08:43:42 AM »
I both are parts of the issue.

Some comments are meant to get a rise out of people. Other times it's someones true feelings and ideaology.

I recall on cracked.com reading a related article (sorry can't remember the name, something about why we're doomed or why internet brings out so many douchbags) comparing posts in their fairly anonymous comments and their forums (where like here you have register etc and people can track your posts). The anonymous ones are freuqently unreadable, poor grammar, negative etc. The forums are a lot better.

I think there is a lot more bigortry in our society than we realize, it's just suppressed. I recall when Mel Gibson was caught on tape with his anti-jewish comments, some people reported that many hollywood execs/people weren't upset about what he said, but that he was caught. However most of these people possible grew up when bigotry was out in the open.

I think in some ways it'll get better. The only demographic of white americans that voted for Obama over McCain were the 18-35 yr olds. Also the younger generations are more tolerant of homosexual and interracial couples/marriage than the older typically in our society.

Once the top hollywood execs retie/die after a generation or so we'll hopefully have more movies, t.v. shows etc that aren't lazy and go to the default us vs them. There are still attributes that seem to be ok to mock someone for and be deemed superior/the hero, but things seem to be getting better.

Also Idiocracy, has many flaws and I doubt could be anywhere near a prohpecy. I haven't seen the movie in a while so I may recall some things wrong, but 100 IQ is the average, even if people got stupider the average IQ would still be 100. It's a relative, not absolute value. Smarter people and geniuses can born from less intelligent people. My friends who watched this movie with me, said something along the lines of knuckle draggers with keep having more knuckle dragging kids and since they are out breeding smarter people, we'll be overrun by knuckle draggers. This isn't true, as some of those kids couple be very intelligent and/or curious and teach them selves how to learn and understand things.

Also any human rights movement was started by someone whose previous generation, thought whatever the movement is against, was fine. Slave trade, slavery, women voting, women owning propery, interacial marriages etc. wouldn't have happened if things were always getting worse.
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Offline piperspitt

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Re: Racism and the Internet
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2012, 09:24:00 AM »
People dislike others for a multitude of reasons. It's really easy to say the reason is racism. Typically the real answer is behavioral. While its true that certain cultures or races may behave a certain way because of their race or culture, the behavior is the deciding factor and not genetics. An even bigger issue is socoeconomic class. Behaviors also tend to differ by class and in some areas classes can appear to be divided by class as well. For someone to make a racist comment or for somebody to call somebody racist shows that they are either ignorant or to lazy to recognize the real problem.
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