The internet is not a support group

That’s a quote from Dyskinesia, actually, some time ago. And it’s true. You can say heartfelt things online and have people respond with complete shit just to piss you off. That’s why there’s a whole theory devoted to it. Check Penny Press, for example. (And seriously, do, they have great T-shirts.)

In my MUD career I saw dozens and dozens of this phenomenon, trust me.

But sometimes the ‘net can warm your heart. I found one of those this morning here on WordPress, where one of the most popular posts was this one on Shapely Prose: a 13-year-old British teenager wrote in describing her horrible depression and a suicide attempt because of her weight. The result was an outpouring of empathy from that blog’s commenters: 137 replies in less than 20 hours, and not one of them cruel or twisted.

It’s times like that, when people reach out to help a stranger in distress, that I can sometimes think that the human race has some hope left for it after all.

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3 Responses

  1. There are good decent people out there. I kind of like to think of the world as a big scale.

    I end up seeing, or at least paying attention to, the bad things. But I guess I really know that there is enough goodness to balance things out a bit.

    Or at least I hope so.

    Me too.

  2. Love the theory chalkboard.

    I left the social work experience with a skewed view that the majority of people are bad….saw too many abusive parents and capable people who didn’t want to work. I had to leave the profession just to restore my faith in humanity. Now I tend to think that must people are good (until I watch ‘To Catch a Predator’ or read comments left on news stories.)

    I have to say that I assume most people suck, so it’s good to be proven wrong.

    I’ve never watched “To Catch a Predator” – I don’t think I could handle it. And as for comments on news stories, yikes, they reinforce my lack of faith in humanity. There’s at least one person here that makes the “donorcycle” joke on every single article about a motorcycle accident. Complete with a šŸ˜€ smiley face.

  3. oh Allison I am so with you on the shudder-factor of “To Catch A Predator”!

    And Taoist, that is so sweet about the out-pouring for that teen…I know that there are good people left in the world and good things being done…it’s still about 94% bad, but I cling to that 6% baby! šŸ˜‰

    Yes, thank God for the 6%!

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