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Political Chat Becomes Barroom Brawl on the Web
Wed Apr 10,11:39 AM ET
By Daniel Sorid
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Finding an intelligent political discussion on the Web is still a challenge. Despite the maturing of the Internet, juvenile vulgarity and extremism are often the norm on many mainstream chat boards.
The Web's accessibility -- and the relative anonymity of the user behind the computer keyboard -- makes the Internet a convenient place to vent hatred and prejudice with impunity.
"The openness of these newsgroups has been their downfall," said Robert Wood, a professor at Rutgers University in Camden, New Jersey, who teaches a course on sociology and the Internet.
"Many people, myself included, have deserted these parts of the Internet," he said.
On the message boards of the popular Web site Yahoo.com (http://www.yahoo.com) major world religions are routinely defiled, world leaders cursed and entire peoples denounced in unpublishable ways. Ethnic stereotyping, and even calls for mass slaughter, drown out the more thoughtful comments on Yahoo's message board on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which can attract hundreds of messages every hour.
The debate is perhaps a little more refined on some Usenet message boards, a part of the Internet that was popular long before the Web. The boards are easily browsable at Google (news - external web site) groups (http://groups.google.com)
On one board about Israel, crude comments loaded with exclamation points and strings of capital letters are sprinkled around some otherwise calmer postings. But even these gentler comments tend to be no more than a few sentences.
see link for rest of article.
-- (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 13, 2002
BWAHAHAHA REPUG IDIOT!!!
-- (ROTFL@Rolo.Dumbya's brown noser), April 13, 2002.
"Finding an intelligent political discussion on the Web is still a challenge. Despite the maturing of the Internet, juvenile vulgarity and extremism are often the norm on many mainstream chat boards.
The Web's accessibility -- and the relative anonymity of the user behind the computer keyboard -- makes the Internet a convenient place to vent hatred and prejudice with impunity."
During the Clinton years, ignorant coward repugs like Rolo used the internet to prove themselves the most disgusting creatures on the planet by spewing an exorbitant amount of slanderous lies. They love the internet since they are incapable of having an honest discussion, they can just post rightwing propoganda lies without any evidence.
-- (email@example.com), April 14, 2002.
The liberals are doing the exact same thing now that a Repug is in office.
-- Ralph (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 14, 2002.
They love the internet since they are incapable of having an honest discussion,
I'll call you on that one dearie; when did ever even try to have an "honest" discussion on this forum?
Why don't you start one right now? (hint: an "honest" discussion does not include insults of other posters, persons or groups.)
-- (Roland@hatemail.com), April 14, 2002.
"The liberals are doing the exact same thing now that a Repug is in office."
Exactly. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Spineless pugs like Rolo have a lot of fun dishing it out, but they whine incessantly when it is their time to take it.
-- (email@example.com), April 14, 2002.
Regarding "dishing it out" and "taking it", it matters whether "it" is true or not.
The Clintons were on the receiving end of some gross slanders (e.g. that Vince Foster was murdered in an apartment belonging to Hillary, and the body then moved to the park where it was found). Unfortunately, Clinton was able to persuade a great many weak minds that all the accusations against him were equally false.
The allegations regarding the death of Vince Foster were on the same level as some of the accusations we now hear about Bush (e.g. that our war in Afghanistan was really all about oil). That's pure crap, but it does not mean that all accusations against Bush are unfounded. I still say that domestically, the motto "Let no big contributor go unrewarded" has pretty much held true so far.
-- Peter Errington (firstname.lastname@example.org), April 14, 2002.
I'm still waiting for that "serious" discussion, fartblossom. I guess you're all show and no go.
-- (Roland@hatemail.com), April 14, 2002.
Hey Rollie, ‘fartblossom’ as you have so eloquently named him, is actually many people on this forum and saves his serious posts for a more recognizable handle. I appreciate the political balance he brings to this place for without him we would be stuck with the ‘little thing’ and the ‘simpleton from Seattle’.
-- Send (email@example.com), April 14, 2002.