Keyboard Warriors: Facebook, Social Media, Cyber Trolling

Calling all ‘Keyboard Warriors’

That’s right folks, Facebook, or, The Facebook as my mother-in-law hilariously refers to it, is a horrific wasteland for the negative, lonely and downright nasty human beings that live within us. Where talkin’ a Mad Max (1 of course) style terrain inside your computer, and your head.

It doesn’t matter how cute the post, how interesting, how positive, how uplifting, how good for the world, or the environment, the endangered, the homeless, the weak, the vulnerable, the young – one of us out there will find our inner troll and vent the nastiest bile we can muster. You’ve done it. I’ve done it. Maybe I haven’t been tasty. But I’ve definitely been negative… OK so I’ve been nasty.

We used to vent our spleen about the world and its problems to old Mrs Jessup over the back fence, now we can do it from the kitchen with our ugg boots on – without actually having to talk to anyone face to face. Without having to contend with any retort from another human that may enlighten our view with a quiet reasonable argument to the contrary. Or even step-in to protect someone we are verbally attacking for no good reason.

Nope, online, unpleasant as you damn please. It’s your opinion, and its bloody well right! Standing strong and tall behind your selected screen in total privacy. No one can touch you. A world where SHARING has taken on a new meaning. As has LIKE and FRIEND. And the most misunderstood word of them all – PRIVATE. Because you’re only LIKING air, some of your FRIEND’s you’ve never met, or went to school with when you were 10, you are essentially SHARING with nobody, and in this world, nothing is PRIVATE.

‘Hang on’ I hear you say, ‘isn’t this just another negative troll style rant!’
Um, well yes. Until now … what if…

What if we only posted positive comments?
Heelloooooo… are you still there?
What if one of our ‘friends’ posts a picture of him/herself, and immediately you can feel it bubbling. Straight away you’re thinking it…
He’s let himself go!
Fat cow!
Dirty bogan redneck!
Posh w##ker!
How bad is that suit!
Is she still pregnant?

And there you are, trying to think of a funny way to say it. You can’t wait to post this mad piece of poetry. People are going to laugh themselves stupid when they see your totally witty post. Next time they see you it will be the first thing they say – “Man how funny are you!”, “Wow you really nailed it with that comment”, “You’re awesome!!”

In the real world though, like this one where we walk around and bump into each other, they, and especially, your target, will just think you are a total tool. Not to your face of course, but behind your back. Even if they have never met you. They will be straight on your profile to find out why you are such a hateful piece of shit. Which you probably aren’t. Or maybe you are.

Because cynical, critical, pessimistic, just damn bloody nasty mongrel comments, helps no-one on this planet, bar your good trolling self. If the minute you have ever felt that ping of regret the split second after you’ve hit the post button, you know, if you haven’t, then you are the nasty hateful prick mentioned above.

But what if, just what if, your fingers boycott your brain. ‘No. No. No.’ they say. ‘He/she doesn’t deserve that shit,’ your wiggling fingers shout!
If you can’t muster something nice, as my mum used to say, say nothing, walk away. Put down your phone/iPad/mouse for a sec and look at a tree. Even if its a dusty pot plant next to your PlayStation 1.

Maybe… maybe you could even drop a little – “Looking great!”
That’ll throw em.