Guess what? There's been drama on the Internet this week.
No news there, though it always surprises me that people are shocked when it happens. With the speed of communication, and the added bonus of so-called anonymity luring those who might not normally say or do things, there is always drama. In comments. In tweets. In blog posts. In announcements.
For the most part, I avoid drama at all costs. Why? Because my life has enough complications in it without going and looking for more that have nothing to do with me. I'm not talking about speaking up about genuine issues, like the fiasco in Indiana with their attempts to slide discrimination into law by masking it under lies that it's exactly like other laws already on the books in other parts of the country (newsflash: it's not). It's the little things like falling for trolls in comment sections who only want to rile people up that can suck away energy that is better served in other parts of my life.
People say things online they wouldn't say in real life. They think the Internet is a safe place. I wish I could grab them by the shoulders, shake them, and say, "Oh, hell to the no." Even when someplace is labeled "safe," it's not. It's online. It's archived. Identities can be created with minimal effort.
On top of that, intention can be completely misconstrued. The written word is absorbed through the filter of the reader, not the creator. Too often, as creators who try to keep as much control over their words as possible, this is easy to forget.
My rule of thumb is, Don't put anything online I wouldn't say to an auditorium packed with strangers. I don't gossip or bitch unless I'm willing to have what I said get back to the wrong people. Which means, I usually curb my language, or don't comment, or click away from a post that unsettles me.
The only Internet drama I want in my life is that which makes a tangible difference to me and my family. The rest is superfluous. I'm going to treat it as such.