Process Post

Process Post #11

Comments are a big part of the online world. Nowadays most online influencers are sharing how they deal with the hate, and how they try their best not to read the comments. The commonplace understanding that comment sections are terrible comes from the excessive amounts of hate there is online. I feel like it’s very hard to avoid hate online, as there is always someone who has something negative to say. It often feels like one hate comment outweighs all the positive ones. Meanwhile, I’ve heard people say that they try and focus on the good, rather than the bad.

Comment sections can also be a positive place. Konnikova claims “Removing comments also affects the reading experience itself: it may take away the motivation to engage with a topic more deeply, and to share it with a wider group of readers” (2013). It can be a place to connect with your audience and hear feedback from them. I’ve seen many influencers start moderating their comment sections, limiting what people can say. I think this is a great idea, because it filters out things you don’t want to see. While I think it’s unfortunate that you have to block out certain things, it is necessary for people’s well-being and continued online presence. I think I would do this for my blog as well! Currently, I have the setting on where I have to approve comments before they appear on my site. Since my site doesn’t have a lot of engagement and it is mainly my friends checking out, I want to be able to make sure what they are commenting is appropriate.

For example, I’ve seen people on reality TV who I didn’t like when watching. However, I would never comment anything negative on their posts. First off, an online presence or an edit on TV isn’t always the most accurate presentation of someone. Second, I would never spread hate about someone online to make them feel bad. I feel like the only people who do that are insecure about themselves.

Another thing that adds to the ability to speak freely, is anonymity. Konnikova claims that “The theory is that the moment you shed your identity the usual constraints on your behavior go, too” (2013). People find it easier to hide behind a screen, rather than face people head on. Anonymity helps them create a disconnected between their identity and what they are saying, also known as the “online disinhibition effect”. Konnikova suggests that ” a full fifty-three per cent of anonymous commenters were uncivil, as opposed to twenty-nine per cent of registered, non-anonymous commenters” (2013). In other words, anonymity encourages incivility. It allows you to feel more comfortable being uncivil, if you aren’t showing who you really are. It gives people the freedom to say what they want, without facing consequences regarding their character.

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