I Have the Feeling Few will Agree

What is plain to those that reason from a result and then work backward, is the internet was invented for the purposes of porn and email. If porn wins and email places, then outrage is to show, and it is both a hilarious and frustrating phenomena perpetrated by none too few a poster. Sprinkled daily amidst my news feed on the Facebook, are links to news reports about WHAT THE AMERICANS ARE UP TO NOW, or how STEPHEN HARPER IS STEALING YOUR RIGHTS, or how CHEMICAL GAZITRON WILL TURN YOUR NEWBORN INTO A HORSE.

A recent article in the feminist blog Jezebel accused The Daily Show of being a boys club, something long standing Daily Show presenter, Samantha Bee, dismissed. Emily Gould at Slate accused blogs like Jezebel of exploiting the worst tendencies of women, and introduced me to a new term: feminist outrage porn. If I understand this neologism correctly, I take it to mean that some women “get off” on pointing out injustices to the world. That much like a charitable contribution makes the giver feel good, so does the keen feminist also experience a similar rush of satisfaction when she uncovers a hereto unknown nugget of sexism.

But let’s not pick on women or feminists, for the phenomenon of outrage porn is not unique to the fairer gender. We all have our pet causes, and when worldview reinforcement presents itself in the press we cannot help but perk up and take notice. Not only will certain news items be of more than common interest, but will confirm our rightness, and that what we are so very right about is also important.

But back to Facebook. I have a few rules for myself about that never neverland of narcissism. The first is that it is not to be taken seriously, and what must follow from that rule is that anything serious that might show on Facebook is therefore verboten. For that reason, I never join groups about politics or causes, and have some reservations about those that do. Yes, consciousness raising. However, then there is fooling oneself into thinking that clicking a button is doing your bit.

So, while I am thankful in some senses there are those keeping me up to date on the latest monstrous inequity perpetrated by the man in the name of greed and shallow caprice, I find myself caring a bit less about it for the effort of cutting and paste.

Robin Lindsay



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