Azure Jane Lunatic (azurelunatic) wrote,
Azure Jane Lunatic

"I am so fucking sick of the 'it's only the internet' argument"

This is written by theoryofgravity, under some form of Creative Commons attribution license, and I'm reproducing it here so I have a copy to hand, since the original place it was posted is lost somewhere in time and the depths of the internet.
I am so fucking sick of the "it's only the internet" argument. It seems like any jackass who can string three words together and call it a sentence feels as though s/he can be absolved from any rank stupidity they might spit out by saying "it's only the internet!" alongside the secondary implication that "if you take this seriously you must be a big loser with no life."

Fuck that noise. For those who've not caught a ride on the clue train yet, the internet is not just for losers anymore. The internet is a hugely influential cultural medium that is rapidly outpacing traditional print sources of media, as well as television and film. It is most assuredly not "only" the internet; the internet is not some "fake" world, it is a legitimate and identifiable community despite the any arguments against it as inauthentic due to a lack of physical proximity and contact between members. The internet is an imagined community only insofar as all communities are imaginary, and a person who stakes a good part of their identity in their use of livejournal isn't a whole lot different than someone who put an Amerikan flag on their car because they believe that it somehow connects them to every other stupid motherfucker who happens to live inside the invisible lines that define "America."*

The internet is a hugely powerful resource and mouthpiece in which a huge segment of the population (excepting, of course, the sizable groups who cannot afford computers, internet access, or training on how to use any of the above) is free to put forth their ideas and opinions and potentially reach a significant number of people -- at the very least, far more people than you might reach by standing on an apple crate on a street corner and proselytizing to everyone who walks by. The internet is not a throwaway world in which you cannot be held accountable for the stupid shit you say.

In conclusion: it's not "only the internet". Personally, as a cultural theorist this make me want to fucking throttle people. Just we can't see you doesn't mean we can't see the ugliness in the words you've chosen.

*Pretend there is a footnote here for Benedict Anderson.

Crossposted. comment count unavailable comments.

Comments for this post were disabled by the author