Sunday, 18 September 2011

Poison pens

I'm constantly baffled by the army of people who dedicate themselves to making other people's lives more painful. Not just criticising them or looking down on them but actively doing everything they can to wound and torment them.

If you're a celebrity, or just someone temporarily in the headlines, as well as the normal personal problems you have to deal with there's an endless barrage of venom and abuse from complete strangers who seem to have nothing better to do than to stick a knife into someone else.

It used to be just newspaper and TV journalists who went in for gratuitous vilification. Now it's all those ordinary Joes and Julies who've taken to the internet to slag off anyone they disapprove of, often under a cowardly cloak of anonymity that makes it virtually impossible for the victim to retaliate.

I've always recoiled from such poisonous filth, and most of the time I follow a strict rule of never making a comment about public figures unless it's supportive. Groups of people, like politicians and journalists themselves, I regard as fair game because I'm not attacking anyone personally.

But what have people like Kate and Gerry McCann ever done to deserve all the rabid denigration they've received from the media and the public? All the accusations that they were irresponsible parents, that they did away with their own child, that they're just attention-seekers, and so on and so forth. What sort of cheap thrill and sick pleasure do people obtain from spewing out all this shit?

Why don't these twisted individuals concentrate on sorting out their own lives rather than poking their nasty noses into someone else's - someone they've probably never even met and have a totally false picture of? How many skeletons are hiding in their own squalid little closets?

19 comments:

John Gray said...

journalists are ambitious and need an ~"angle" to get themselves a name
daft fuckers!

John Gray said...

ps apologies for the fucker commen

Scarlet Blue said...

Have you been reading the Mail online, Nick?
Sx

Yes, I do think this type of journalism is vile.

Nick said...

John - And if it's an angle that's likely to seriously upset the person in question, what the fuck? Just as long as the number of readers/internet hits goes up.

It's okay, there's no linguistic prudery here!

Scarlet - The unspeakable Daily Mail was an ever-present feature of my childhood. My mother still reads it avidly. It thrives on lies, distortions, smears and abuse of every possible variety, not to mention panic, hysteria and paranoia.

Baino said...

It's an attempt to find a story where there is none. As for anonymous poison. I don't allow anonymous comments on my blog, ever. Some people just need to get a life.

Nick said...

Baino - The golden rule for some journalists: if there's no story, then invent one! The British tabloids have been caught out many times over fictitious stories.

nursemyra said...

I try not to read any of that stuff. Too vile and depressing

Nick said...

Myra - How right you are. It takes a seriously deranged mind to crank out all this garbage.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Since no one knows what happened to little Madeleine, you would think people would go out of their way to support and comfort her parents, who have suffered such an unimaginably dreadful loss. I think, sadly, that many people have always been mean-spirited, but the current ease of disseminating information of every sort has made it far more ubiquitous a problem. I wish humans would just grow up and stop tormenting each other.

Nick said...

Heart - Indeed, whatever happened to support and comfort? All these trigger-happy snipers are like kids fighting in the playground, kids who've never grown up.

speccy said...

I'm glad I don't know the particular story you've mentioned, but I'm always amazed at the vitriol spewed at people in the public eye, sometimes simply because they chose an unflattering garment (or the photographer had happily found a good for him bad angle).

Wisewebwoman said...

Do you know what I wish, Nick? that people would just stop supporting the purveyors of such appalling yellow filthy journalism of the worst kind, including those reality shows.

I am experimenting at the moment, as you know I haven't had teevee for nigh on 20 years and have now not restarted my daily newspaper delivery to see how I fare.

I think if WWW3 breaks out I will know and what else is newsworthy? I skim headlines on the interwebz so am not totally ignorant (and of what, plane crashes? Kardashian sisters oh my?)
Dog eat dog and all that.
XO
WWW

Jenny Woolf said...

I also hate the way the McCanns have been abused. I am afraid though that history is full of people taking the chance to attack other people, just - well, just because they can. It happens in schools, it happens in the work place. It has happened throughout history. Those losers who post spiteful things on the internet would have been queuing up to chuck rotten vegetables at people being publicly hanged, a few hundred years ago, or they would be personally stoning adulterers to death and then going home to supper. There are just certain people who like to bully and torment others, preferably without any consequences for themselves. I dare say they're the same ones who torment small animals.

I am deeply thankful that I live in an age and culture when this kind of behaviour is looked down on and despised, rather than in a society where it's celebrated, found amusing or even tolerated.

Nick said...

Speccy - I know, I can't believe the incredibly trivial put-downs directed at celebs - a square inch of cellulite, a dress that's showing a fraction too much cleavage. *yawn*

www - Despite your long avoidance of TV, you aren't at all ill-informed, quite the opposite. I'll be following your newspaper-avoidance with interest.

Nick said...

Jenny - You're right, the same people in earlier centuries would have been the frenzied rabble chucking stones and tomatoes at the evildoers. Some people, as you say, just love being bullies.

Suburbia said...

Not read it, but I guess it is ultimately all about making money?

Nick said...

Suburbia - For the journalists, I guess it's all about making money. But how to explain all those anonymous bloggers and Facebookers pouring out all their vitriol for no tangible gain except some sort of perverted enjoyment?

blackwatertown said...

Don't buy it - if it's a newspaper.
As for the rest - ah, just try to ignore them.

Nick said...

Blackwater - Hard to ignore such a constant barrage of criticism and malice, it's everywhere you look. Even in the so-called "quality" newspapers. And if you ignore the media, how do you find out about the things you're actually interested in?