The Internet and email are wonderful things most of the time. But the dreadful simplicity of this form of communication has some downsides – most significantly in that it allows people’s idiotic thoughts to be transmitted beyond themselves.
Everyone has idiotic thoughts. Some people have many more than others. And mostly you control them; keep them safe until you’ve checked them internally. Some people however have so many stupid ideas in their head that they can’t help but leak out. These are the people that most love the Internet.
If you ever had to deal with a wider community online (I have as an author, a journalist, a news editor, a blogger and now a general manager of public participation), you get your fill of people talking utter nonsense or – better – misreading or misrepresenting what you said and then attacking you for what they believe they have read.
For all of you fellow sufferers out there – I know you are many – here is a helpful release, courtesy of my good friend Rachel. It is called spEak You’re bRanes and you can find it at:
It comprises of choice comments from readers of the BBC website, and it is terrific. The editor delights in surreal attacks on the wonderful collection of idiots, bigots, liars, fools and general nutjobs that have found the Internet and aren’t afraid to use it.
Just one example, in a post asking why people are willing to torture, a loon claiming to come from Rockall (he doesn’t, it’s uninhabited as I can personally testify) has this to say:
They need not have bothered.
Just ask how many people laugh at situations you see on You’ve Been Framed.
We all have an inbuilt trigger that laughs at someone falling over.
Mr James T Haddock, Rockall Island (Scotland), United Kingdom
Our editor has this offer in response:
I don’t know where to start with this one. By pointing out the subtle differences between complicity in atrocities and shitty home-staged slapstick? By gently breaking it to him that the laughter he hears on You’ve Been Framed isn’t really people? Or do I just dive straight in with the electrified nipple-clamps and laugh my arse off?
There’s much more. It will help you laugh it off.