The See Also Literature and technology Book Club discussion

Technically Wrong > Articles relating to topics in Technically Wrong

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by HKMar (new)

HKMar | 18 comments Reddit is place that you can get news and the best memes but it has a dark side too.
The trolls are winning. How do we fix life online without limiting free speech?

message 2: by Eric (new)

Eric | 36 comments HKMar wrote: "Reddit is place that you can get news and the best memes but it has a dark side too.
The trolls are winning. How do we fix life online without limiting free speech?"

I remember as an undergrad I took a class called Marxism and Feminism. One of the things that stuck with me was when the professor said that the liberal worldview is not unlike an inverted pyramid with primarily smart people at the top and then as you go down the pyramid and account for fewer numbers, people become less smart. Most people are smart and good-hearted. The Internet has in a way provided those that are toxic to have an unaccountable anonymous voice and because these people might end up grouping themselves together, they appear to be bigger and more important than they are. Maybe that is optimistic but I’m sticking with it.

message 3: by HKMar (new)

HKMar | 18 comments It describes Reddit culture perfectly.

message 4: by Amy (new)

Amy (puzumaki) | 45 comments I've thought about this a bit, how the Internet is giving more voice to hatred than I think exists in real life. Or it gives the "freedom" to say what you wouldn't in person. The problem isn't necessarily free speech but rather anonymity hooked into it. It's a space in which we can "reach" anyone. I could tweet at Sarah Jessica Parker, for instance, and it would be publicly consumed yet anonymous at the same time.

Here are the steps I am inclined to investigate/enact:

1. Our online presence might be better if we weren't allowed to be anonymous, but I haven't found a way to implement that without the reverse happening, where one becomes unsafe for losing anonymity. What is happening now, with trolls, goes against the foundations of our country, so I do feel that government intervention is necessary and while people might be "anonymous" to one another, they need to be tied to their physical identity so our judicial system can actually work in this new sphere.

2. Tech companies no longer get to dodge laws that effect their non-virtual counterparts. They've avoided them too long and get away with too much for it, relying on sketchy ToS's instead of regulated laws. Uber needs to be reclassified for what it is: a transportation company. Reddit: a public forum (yes, we have laws for those). What it is isn't what's different, it's the medium it exists as. It's like saying an ebook isn't a book. They're just full of it and don't want to deal with laws. The Internet is akin to the Wild West right now.

3. And with those two, I also feel it is past time for a new judicial branch, one that specializes in cyber law and technology that can uphold our actual laws and be aware of the technical implications of code and poor business logic. Our government is simply slapping bandages on practices that failed to account for our cyber space.

Even if none of these more formal approaches occur, there may be some hope we can self regulate better. There's an interesting experiment that happened last year, and I think it paints a somewhat optimistic future of "taming the west":

back to top