Saturday, November 10, 2012

Fish in a barrel

Twitter is the perfect practice area for idiot hunting, but it still doesn't prove anything.

This week the feminist website Jezebel shared a collection of Twitter chatter of racially offensive remarks about President Barack Obama after the election results came in. Like all idiot hunting expeditions, this was an attempt to demonstrate something about our society, but it really only proved that there are stupid people on the Internet.

Earlier this year conservatives passed links back and forth that showed Twitter users in America calling for the death of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker after he won the recall election and the death of Mitt Romney for winning the first debate. Many of them said they intend to assassinate Walker or Romney.

So what have we learned from this, are conservatives racists and do liberals want to murder right-wing politicians after they lose an election? Some of them are guilty, but not the entire group. There is no attempt to defend these online messages because they are a childish reaction from the fringe.

Which group is more likely to post these sort of message, liberals or conservatives? We don't know that either.

People pass around these Twitter lists to prove a point, but they are merely a collection of anecdotes, not hard data, and they prove nothing more than the idiocy of some young people on the Internet.

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