So I know I’ve been out of the loop with pretty much everything going on everywhere, especially online. And in particular, I am practically never on Deviantart anymore, and have not been for at least a few months. But I’ve caught up a bit now, and I have to say, things need to change.
Seriously, guys. I don’t know how many people will read this, if anyone, but as the Internet grows and the number of people on it daily grows, I think we need to be made aware of the fact that this also seems to increase the number of people hurt.
In particular, I want to send out my condolences to Ziegsden, Markiplier, and Cyndago.
With our connections to people on the Internet, I think some are forgetting that they’re talking to real people, real human beings with real emotions and thoughts. The Internet is not a place where we can just change things on a whim or say whatever we want without the consequences. Because there are consequences. Words have weight, a feeling so heavy you can’t put a number on it. We live in a society where someone else’s opinions mean everything to us, even though it really should not. But we can’t change the truth of the matter, and words that we casually throw around without a second thought can really hurt. They can have an impact that we can’t even imagine.
And the fact that a single post can drive a person to suicide? That should never be an option, should never even be a passing thought. That said, we are human. We make mistakes. Sometimes we say things that we don’t mean, or tell someone something that’s taken the entirely wrong way.
I noticed that it seems to be a trend among YouTubers in particular. One person will say something in a Tumblr, Twitter or YouTube post, not realizing in that moment that it’s offensive or hurtful. That’s fine. Everyone does it, even the best of us. It’s the backlash that follows that’s not okay. To have a community of people lashing out at someone for a situation they don’t even fully understand is not okay. I understand people are defending someone they genuinely care about, but to tell someone that they deserve to die, or that they should have gone through with the suicidal thoughts? No. Just. Stop.
While this was a larger case with everything that happened with the Late Night Crew, it’s certainly not the first time. People do it everyday to someone they hate without even knowing. Pewdiepie gets it daily. While I’m not a die-hard fan, (I barely ever watch his videos, just not my type of let’s player) that doesn’t mean I’m going to bash him for something he might have thoughtlessly said or berate him for not doing something. People are stupid sometimes, and to get mad because he did something stupid would just make one a hypocrite. And when you have millions of people doing that to you, it really hurts. I’m serious, it gets to you.
Everyone has a facade they put on for the world, whether or not it’s subconscious. They want to appear brave, or independent, or funny. I’ve done it my entire life. But if that mask changes, even slightly, you shouldn’t get upset. It’s them trying to show you their real self. It’s proof that they’re starting to trust you a bit. Therefore, don’t yell at someone for not getting scared, or for not doing something that should be common sense. Seriously, you know you’ve had those moments too. And if someone seems abrasive, don’t call them a bitch and tell them to die. While what happened with the LNC was certainly not okay, (I hate to admit I’m a bit disappointed in them) we as a community don’t know the full story. People are fucked up, the world we live in right now is fucked up, and life is fucked up. But that doesn’t mean that none of those things can’t change. Because they can. And they will.
I know I probably sound more than a bit pretentious and like a self-righteous bastard here, but I’m honestly speaking from experience. I’ve had people say things to me that really honestly hurt, and even if they didn’t mean it, it put a severe damper on my confidence and ability. I’m a writer, it’s what keeps me going sometimes, but their words left me unable to do anything for months. And only a few years ago, I lost someone I really cared about, only to find out months after the incident that they never even existed. That really hurt. It honestly left me contemplating suicide. I started cutting, sometimes still do, and not a member of my family consoled me. It hurts, even if it’s online, but the person responsible was sorry. She was truly sorry, and she didn’t think of the consequences. But when she came out with the truth, only 0.05% of the people involved even bothered to listen to her side of the story. I lost count of the number of people who told her she deserved to die. I honestly don’t know what happened to her. For all I know, she’s been dead for three years.
If that is the case, those people who drove her to that point would be held responsible. She made a mistake, but she realized it, and she tried to change. I, and the one person directly involved in the entire mess, forgave her. I won’t lie and say I’m not angry with her, but I forgive her. She felt alone, and that’s something I can relate with.
I suppose the point I’m trying to make here is please, care about other people. All this media has desensitized us, but that doesn’t mean the world doesn’t still affect us. Even if you can’t change the way you feel, and sometimes you just can’t, think of the weight of your words. Please. I’m tired of reading about people dying because strangers on the Internet think they’re worthless. Because other opinions do matter to us, no matter how much we like to believe otherwise.
This has to stop.