Social media has become a playground for harsh words, slander and hate. Cruel words can spread so quickly that if you blink, you might miss them.
While Facebook is usually rife with people bragging or complaining about their lives, Twitter’s limit of 140 characters requires conversations from a whole different perspective. Debate is relatively nonexistent. It has become the new platform for people to share their hate with the world.
When the new Miss America was crowned last week, Twitter blew up with hateful comments regarding her ethnicity within the span of a few minutes.
According to CNN, there are more than half a billion Twitter accounts in existence, and a majority of them have something to say, whether or not those comments are important or even useful. When Warner Bros. announced that Ben Affleck would play Batman in the “Man of Steel” sequel, when Obama was still waiting to make a decision about Syria and when the “not guilty” verdict came down in the George Zimmerman trial, Twitter exploded.
CNN quoted psychiatrist David Reiss, who said, “If there is a feedback or push back (to your angry tweets), you don’t necessarily even see it.”
When people tweet, they don’t necessarily see the consequences of what they just wrote.
According to a study published by Beijing University researchers, “Results show that anger is more influential than other emotions like joy, which indicates that the angry tweets can spread quickly and broadly in the network.”
Most of us who use Twitter regularly can agree with this.
While I express moments of joy in my own tweets, my more angry tweets get the most attention. When I complain, or in my generation’s words, “put something on blast”, that’s when I see the most people relating to me. Then, I feel inclined to be more negative or to be more sarcastic with my tweets to get more follows, favorites and retweets.
Most people on Facebook post statuses to show their friends how life is going, but Facebook comments are directly and more or less private, whereas the majority of Twitter is visible for everyone to see.
While most of the world has come to see Twitter as a way to stay updated on what’s going on in the world, it is also a place where hate spreads so rapidly it will make your head hurt.
Many Twitter users want to catch your attention. While happiness is a powerful emotion, anger makes the social media world go ’round. Twitter has become an echo chamber, a platform where you are rewarded for expressing negative emotions.
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