Welcome to the Internet where you are not allowed to state your opinion if it’s negative in any form.
I always preach that sometimes a negative opinion is best left to yourself, especially if you plan to use a lot of profanity, no constructive reasons to support that said opinion, or it promotes targeting a specific person, race, sex, etc.
But what about the other side of the coin? What if you had an negative opinion on something but none of the things above applied? Lately, I feel like the Internet is not only a place where people can express themselves, but where we can easily get bent out of shape because someone prefers oranges over apples.
I think the problem here is that if someone were to type that they like oranges instead of apples, you can’t tell how the person is saying it because it’s all typed in text. Are they saying it with an angry tone? Since there is no way to tell, people decide to assume that the person who says it, is being hateful and they choose to either insult, threaten, or lecture the individual.
I try not to be that person who says things like “this movie was trash” or “this game is a piece of shit.” I prefer to say things like: “I don’t like the taste of beer because…..I find it to be bitter,” or “I think that [celebrity name] should go back to making that genre of music instead of this genre because they had more meaningful songs and wrote them themselves”
Even if I take the time to explain myself, give valid points, and use no strong language, I still get pelted with backlash.
Example #1 from the Dragon Age fandom on a Facebook fan page that posts art.
Me: I’m not really in to the shipping of Dorian and the Iron Bull together. I think Bull looks better with the Inquisitor.
Page admin: Then please keep scrolling, we don’t need that kind of negativity here.
Person: You hate Adoribull?! Get out of here you disgusting homophobic bitch!
Of course, I’m all for preaching that you shouldn’t say anything at all if you can’t say something nice, but where on Earth did I say anything in that comment that didn’t meet the definition of nice? I tried to be as nice as possible in my opinion. Also no, I am NOT homophobic, I have several LGBTQ friends that I respect the hell out of. I just don’t like that ship because I’ve got a crush on Bull myself and I don’t particularly like Dorian as a character. I just find his personality uninteresting and his homosexuality has nothing to do with it. Therefore I don’t like seeing them shipped.
Example #2 from the official Gears of War page posting about a trailer for the fifth game.
Me: Personally, I think the series should have ended at the third game. It made sense to end it there. The Locust and the Lambent had been defeated and humanity was at peace.
Person: You should end your life.
Really? So I should go commit suicide because anybody who doesn’t like the fact that the series is continuing doesn’t deserve to live? It’s NOT okay to joke about suicide at any time! I provided a reasonable explanation to support my opinion and you think I should just go kill myself because you don’t want to admit that I make a good point?
I bet people who disagree go through a stage of denial when they come across an opinion opposite to theirs but makes a lot of sense. To express this denial, they just respond in the harshest way possible which is unfortunately, that they think we need to kill ourselves just because we think that game series X should have ended after game 3 instead of there being a 4th. Pathetic.
I thought the fandoms for certain pop stars were toxic. I don’t know what to say except that I guess people get so passionate about the things they love that they perceive anyone who doesn’t agree with them online as a threat that should either leave the fandom alone or die.
But these two examples are just the beginning, here is the most recent that crossed the line. It was when the Cineplex Facebook page (at least I think it was Cineplex) posted something about the 3rd and final installment of the 50 Shades trilogy coming to theaters. I commented that the books and movies were romanticizing domestic abuse and misrepresenting the BDSM lifestyle, thus making it far from a healthy relationship.
I provided examples from the books (I didn’t read those books by the way, I would have lost too many brain cells if I did, but there’s a blog I follow that cites passages from them.) that were absolutely horrendous such as Christian threatening to hit Ana in public if she doesn’t eat, and another where he says he likes women to wear skirts cause it makes them more “accessible” *puke* Above all, I used no profanity and gave valid concerns and reasons to support my opinion.
There were lots of people who agreed with me, but I also received backlash from some people who claimed the usual like some people in healthy relationships enjoy the movies and the bullshit that Ana “fixes” him in the end. But the worst came when someone decided to lecture me that some people enjoy BDSM and should be allowed to do whatever they want. Then he went on to explain that I don’t know what the hell I’m talking about and proceeded to call me a ret***ed feminazi several times (censoring that word because as someone who has been living with ASD all my life, I find it extremely offensive and we can never be friends if you use it in your vocabulary on a regular basis) who voted for Hillary Clinton. After reading the comment more than once and holding my rage inside, I blocked the bastard and deleted my comment. Coincidentally, he had Donald Trump in his profile picture.
Four things buddy:
One: DON’T. USE. THAT. WORD. The fact that there are still people who use it online and offline is vile. There are so many other words you could have used instead. Buy a dictionary.
Two: That is a horrible stereotype, feminists do not want to eliminate men from the planet. What we are fighting for is for women to have the same rights as men.
Three: There’s no way I could have voted for Clinton even if I wanted to because I am not a US resident.
Four: Maybe YOU should do your research on BDSM, because I did and I can tell you that this trilogy is not even close to being a healthy BDSM relationship.
After the harassment I’ve endured on Twitter before finally leaving the platform in late 2017 and the even worse bullying I received in the Ghost fandom, mainly from two individuals who I will not name, (eventually I might break the silence and share my experience of the latter) every time I receive a reply similar to these incidents, I delete my comment before I get more of them, it’s a way to starve the trolls. But, I can’t help but feel that I’ve still lost just by doing that.
Which is why I have resorted to only sharing my opinions here, where I can be as honest as possible and be in control of any comments that pop up. That way if some pea-brained idiot who can’t accept any opinion but their own stumbles on my blog and decides to give me a hard time, I can shut them down without having to remove my own content.
I mean, personally, it’s one thing to get backlash if you just simply say that that video game sucked and was garbage with no context at all, but if you provide some reasons behind your opinion, you don’t deserve that kind of treatment online or offline. If I see people ranting crap about Mass Effect Andromeda, but they are giving context to their opinions, I don’t pick a fight with them.
It sounds like I’m trying to rid the world of injustice here due to the fact that I was bullied from elementary to secondary school, and preach that anonymity does not excuse that kind of treatment. I’ve had my words dismissed as “It’s the Internet” trust me, I always block assholes when they come, but at one point do we realize that it doesn’t undo the damage dealt? Weren’t we wired to be better than that when it comes to social interaction?
There I go being Vulcan again. Well at least I got this one out. That felt great. Anybody else fed up with this in the online world or have a similar experience they want to share?