Who Are You Online?

I recently had a friend that had someone comment on his blog and this person said some really mean things about his wife. I was absolutely dumbfounded when I read the venom that this person spit out. I was saying to Kimmy that I just do not understand why people feel the need to tear down someone else like that. I just really boggles my mind.

Here it is my friends are about to enjoy one of the most joyous times in their lives and this person comes along under the anonymity of the internet and says these horrible things. So instead of them being able to enjoy their moment, instead they have this thing hanging there. I am sure they are able to block it out for the most part, but the question of why pops up in my head.

Why do we say such mean things? Why do we tear each other down like that? Why do we feel that because we can hide behind our computers and attack people this way?

devilcomputer.gifOn YMX we recently had a discussion about who you are online. It was a very fascinating discussion, because many of the people there have never met anyone from the forum in “real life” and yet there are some there that have. So some know what people are really like when they step away from the anonymity that the internet can provide.I never really responded in there other than to say that there was several people there who have met me in “real life” and I wanted them to say whether or not I was the same. And the few who responded said that I was, which made me happy. I even met one of them when we went on our recent cruise aboard Pacific Catalyst, and he said that I was “just like my posts”. That makes me smile. 🙂

But yet there are people who feel that just because they are basically hiding behind their screen name on the internet that they can be vicious like this guy was with my friends. There is no personal relationship or contact involved, so “no harm, no foul”, right? I don’t think so. Just because we are “hidden” doesn’t mean that we can be crass and rude. Let’s just show some common human decency and act respectful towards one another.

I am a follower of Jesus, a husband to Kim, father to Hannah & Caleb, and the connections pastor at The River Church. The thoughts expressed here are my own and not The River Church's.

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