Thursday, 8 August 2013

Comment

I haven't updated for a while because I write in my head, and then when I type it out and read it back all I think is "wow, what a prat".

There's a lot of that going around at the moment. Prattishness, and fear of prattishness. Comment is free but it's also increasingly unwelcome. D'you comment on stuff? Well, you're a prat. And if you comment on the comment, then you're a moron. And if you comment on the comment on comment then, urgh, you're just a pointless, poisonous snake, hissing out nonsense and chomping on your own tail, an infinity of unwelcome comment that just feeds itself.

Twitter is currently the centre of Earth-based comment, and it's been making even the most liberal commentators interrogate our right to free speech. A number of high-profile women recently became the target of violent threats on Twitter from a bewildering handful of trolls, and Twitter's apology was deemed inadequate by some. Subsequently, there was a #twittersilence - a boycott. There was almost as much comment on the boycott as there was on what caused the boycott. Is it any wonder people are feeling smothered and frustrated by our right to blah?

Even Charlie Brooker's had enough:
If a weatherman misreads the national mood and cheerfully sieg-heils on BBC Breakfast at 8.45am, there'll be 86 outraged columns, 95 despairing blogs, half a million wry tweets and a rib-tickling pass-the-parcel Photoshop meme about it circulating by lunchtime. It happens every day. Every day, a billion instantly conjured words on any contemporaneous subject you can think of. Events and noise, events and noise; everything was starting to resemble nothing but events and noise. Firing more words into the middle of all that began to strike me as futile and unnecessary. I started to view myself as yet another factory mindlessly pumping carbon dioxide into a toxic sky.
We're in an anti-comment epidemic, and I've caught the bug too. But I feel like trying to sleep it off isn't the way to get rid of it. Fight through it. Don't give up and go home. Sneeze on people on the bus. Sneeze on them and be happy.

In other words, I'm going to embrace my inner (and outer) prat and get back to the blah.

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