CAVE people, character assassination, cyber stalking, defamation, economic damage, emotional distress, inappropriate blogging, intellectual property theft, interfering with economic livelihood, legal actions against bloggers, libel, professional attacks, slander, social media, social media character assassinations, social media junkies, social media malice, The Dark Side of Social Media and the Internet, Unconscious incompetents, uninformed experts, vigilante governance
I don’t think when most of us became fascinated with the age of the Internet we could envision how it would change our society in so many ways. Now there is no doubt that it has enabled an entire new approach for instant information and that itself has spawned a huge new vocal voice. Some of these folks are just down right scary. They see themselves as super hero’s looking out for the virtues of humanity, seeking to right the wrongs that their minds have conjured up. They may have been wimps, fat girl, ugly girl, nerds or bullied in their own childhood, maybe they weren’t popular with other kids, they may have felt like misfits previously, but now with the internet, they are online warriors. They take on a persona that in the physical world they could not. The internet has become their alter-ego. Where in real life they may be shy and not outspoken on the internet as a blogger they are the epitome of everything they wish they could be. Worse yet, many of them take out their repressed anguish and frustrations on innocent people via the internet. They stalk, spy and steal information from their victims so as to use it to make their fictional story look overly sensationalized and portray their victim as an unethical, or some other defamatory image. They become the bullies and take out their own frustrations on others.
This type of online vigilante try’s to engage others to join them, wanting validation and social acceptance. They create a truly vile and despicable conspiracy to hunt, stalk, defame and maliciously hurt their victims. Worse yet they get others using the Internet for good purposes to be misled into believing their victims are deserving of the malicious and hurtful behavior.
The most common thread is these cyber stalkers and cyber bullies always attack any rebuttal that is voiced as being a ploy to further mislead their followers… and instead of seeking unbiased, substantiated valid facts they just ignore this responsibility and turn up their attacks. The second major trait is that they cite their basis as their right to the freedom of speech. Using the First Amendment as their defense.
The First Amendment is a double-edged sword, it’s a right and a responsibility, and it is one where People shouldn’t be allowed to torment and terrorize in the name of free speech.
Free Speech gives you the power of opinion and expression, but not the right to commit libel as a blogger. Of course the ultimate test is proving the actual truth. But the burden of proof is on those committing libel not on the plaintiff.
I am hopeful that someday we will have better regulation of websites that are too tolerant of such abusive bloggers in the interest of having more viewers and thus more advertising value. When did Libel and tortiously interfering with someone business, professional reputation and livelihood, become just another cost of doing business for the media? That is the real crime. I hope you never get a pack of nutty bloggers after you, because they just aren’t mostly driven by facts but opinions and accusations. In my case they forget I am a private citizen and as such not a public figure.
My own experience with negative bloggers is that they can’t be reasoned with. They have constructed a validation and justification in their own minds that they believe merits their attacks on the victim.
The only true course someone has that has been targeted by such a person or group of people is to hire a very good attorney and litigate those that participated in damaging you. Slowly I am hoping the laws change and become more restrictive in their allowance of such abuses online.