Dumber, narcissistic , capons.
Facebook is making us dumber, I’m convinced of that. It is also eroding our ability to communicate with each other. We are all forcing ourselves to communicate with as little text as possible, even though we are communicating with people from other areas, states, and even countries. In Wisconsin a water fountain is called a “bubbler” and “pop” is called soda. That is just a small example of how words mean different things to people you didn’t grow up with. Different phrases, different words, different wording…can all be miss interpreted by someone else when you try to convey a thought in 120 characters. Which can bring a response that is also miss interpreted. The notion of simply saying something and getting a reaction to it is becoming like pulling teeth. Even skilled communicators can pretty much flip a coin in the air and having land “heads” be the same odds as actually being clearly understood by the majority of the people who read their tweet.
If I was a bit more cynical I would think this was all some sick social experiment.
Yet another reason why I am choosing to do more here on my own page and less on FB. But FB is a necessary evil for now, and I can’t just let my page collect dust, or use it as a way station for links to come here. I would LIKE to use it as a way station but FB in it’s money grubbing wisdom has an algorithm and if you post too many links in a row they de-prioritize your posts on everyone else’s newsfeed. It is set up that way so guys like me who want to promote have to pay for “sponsored ads” to make sure they are seen. Which would be fine , if that actually worked. It doesn’t…people see “sponsored ad” above a post and they ignore it. duh. All of this is tell tale signs that zuckerburgh was more lucky than smart and FB’s declining overall traffic, and lack of ability to bring in younger generations point to it eventually becoming irrelevant. Hopefully we are not all blithering idiots by then, terrified to use words with more than one syllable lest a flame war break out over not liking how our eggs were cooked this morning.
Facebook is also turning us into narcissists. I don’t mean because we post pics of our kids, and cats, and dinners as though anyone gives a crap. I mean in the general way we view our newsfeeds. The Fb newsfeed gives us images, posts and links that anyone we know has posted for whatever reason….and yet we see them and immediately think it is directed at us or view them as though they came and sat in our living room and stuck it in our face. When in truth they posted whatever 9 time out of 10 not thinking about anyone in particular. Was that posted to piss me off? was that posted to get in my pants? Was that posted to counter what I posted ? they know I am a ( enter political ideology here) how dare they! I must defend my viewpoints! It’s the tower of babble with speed of light carrier pigeons. It would all just be a glorious waste of time, if it wasn’t literally changing how we interact with each other in a negative regressive way.
I am noticing this more than your average person because my FB page is not just friends and family but over 2000 people who are readers, fans, or just felt like “friending” a comic book illustrator.
The aggressiveness is one thing, but that’s not particularly new. man is aggressive by nature and Americans especially love to butt heads. There is something new though, a urge to be a capon and expect others to be capons ( that’s an OLD word, you may want to look it up- capon).
Let me give you an example . After a newsfeed FULL and I mean FULL of posts about super heroes, super hero comics, super hero movies, super hero T.V. shows, As a living example of the narcissism I pointed out earlier I let loose with this in response to my newsfeed.
ENOUGH WITH THE F*CKING SUPER HEROES ALREADY…That’s ALL my newsfeed is, Bullsh*t about 50 year old ideas. Super heroes are to comics books what the Walmart apparel section is to fashion. Watered down sh*t with no imagination for people who can’t be bothered to look past the length of their own arm for something better. These are 50 year old characters created to capture the imaginations of simpletons in the 1950-60’s who used rotary phones and barely knew what an atom even was. I thought, foolishly, when DC started Vertigo in the 90’s we’d finally moved past this drek. ENOUGH!….thanks for listening.
Over the course of a few exchanges I pointed out how this is detrimental to the medium and industry IN WHICH I WORK, in some very insightful ways.
Now…people who are not new to my work or blogs, or are actual grown ups, get the bit here. Wrapped in the entertaining hyperbole is the surgical insight and spot on observations.
I got the usual name calling, and snarky memes. Yeah, it’s Fb , we’re all 12 years olds. I get that. To my previous points though, I have to struggle to get answers to any questions I presented, or even direct confrontation about my actual point. This has become common place. You post I don’t like “George W Bush’s haircut” and the thread becomes unrelated tangents about war crimes, with not one mention of the haircut being good or bad. No matter what you post about a subject, people see it and blather on about whatever they have been wanting to say on the subject. It concerns me. It is intellectually lazy at best, and social regression at worst. Losing the ability to see and explore different angles on a subject is how a free population prevents itself from being lead around by the nose.
In Milwaukee a few months back there was a protest that stopped traffic, and I thought the timing was odd. It was not during the trail which was the subject of the protest, it was not after a verdict was reached….it was just a random weekday. Which implies that all these people could not have spontaneously took to the streets. It had to be organized. Now if I were to point out the timing was odd, or ask if anyone knew why that day was picked, or who organized it ( all very important question no matter which side you are on) I would have just watched a flame war break out on the thread pro vs con, right vs wrong, about the incident being protested….with not one person dealing with the questions. That is bad. very bad. We are not going to remain free very long if we are not able to think past – coke vs pepsi- and delve into ” why are we arguing coke vs pepsi?”. Free people remain free ,often times, by channeling cumulative dissatisfaction. But if we can’t get past ” A vs B” then we can easily have our cumulative dissatisfaction deflected. Bad..very bad.
The other very bad thing is the growing number of capons. After my super hero post I got quite a few ” relax” , ” be tolerant” “why are you so angry?” ect ect. on the thread and in my messages. I get this a lot. A LOT. Anytime I post an opinion that riles things , I’ll get three or four such calls for calm per thread.
To start with, all I have to work with is regular text and ALL CAPS. I cannot fluctuate my voice or even use italics. So if I want to emphasis something ALL CAPS is my only option. If you want to think I am screaming at my computer…I dunno… go ahead I guess, but who put you in charge of my blood pressure anyway? Who told you that you where the lunch room monitor and had to tell everyone to keep their voices low? and why should we? In a culture so quickly becoming pussified I personally will not only NOT tell anyone to calm down about something stuck in their craw, I will commend them for letting loose. We do I have to calm down? In this case it not only directly affects me, as I work in the comic book industry, I have a wealth of insight from having seen the inner workings of publishers. I have watched the industry implode once already and am in a perfect vantage point to see another implosion coming. Yet there are capons out there who not only thought I should say nothing, but felt obligated to tell me to say nothing. Think about that, I was not throwing a flaming bottle at a cop car, or even blocking traffic. I typed out three sentences about super heroes and some where so shaken by it that they felt obligated to try to ease the situation. So neutered, are they that ALL CAPS is a call for concern. As a citizen of a free country, that is under constant siege from corruption, do you really want people like that around? People who not only will not voice an opinion on the most vapid of topics, but look to smother any opinion that has passion behind it?
“why are you so touchy?” “you don’t have to get so aggressive” “why can’t we all just read what we want?’
Why don’t you grow a pair of balls? You can’t handle someone on FB bitching about super hero comics? Go crawl back into your mothers womb where it is nice and warm and quiet. I see opinions I don’t agree with on FB every single time I look at my newsfeed. Not ONCE has the thought crossed my mind to tell the other person they not should speak their mind, in whatever way they see fit. This attitude, that I am seeing more and more, is beyond political correctness, which would allow use to yell as long as we are yelling about the right thing, this is telling us to hush. This is a type of personality that cannot even handle any opinion on anything unless it is spoken in quite tones, with a please and thank you after it.
It makes me sick. You make me sick. Grown people directing a mentality of a librarian, or a grandmother babysitting her grand-kids, towards opinions in general THAT ARE TYPED ON A COMPUTER, are pathetic. PA-THE-TIC.
You are spineless, ball-less, namby pamby, sissies. And I fear for this country if this is a generational attitude.
In case you are wondering the correct response to my rant would be
1-Ha! ( continue flipping through super hero book)
2-agreeing and/or offering insight of your own about THE POINT
3 disagreeing and/or offering insight of your own about THE POINT
4-ignoring it altogether
You’re not my mother. You want to mother someone, go make a kid. Oh wait, you already removed your balls. Well, maybe you can be a mid wife or something…in some other country, because this one was founded by, and continues to need all the big egos and big mouths it can get. We don’t calm down, and we don’t relax and we don’t stop arguing and we don’t stop pointing out when something sucks…and there is a flag on the moon because of it.