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Online 'likes' for toxic social media posts prompt more − and more hateful − messages

18 Comments
By Joseph B Walther

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18 Comments

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Just look at the comments here of JT. Mean spirited posts seem to be made mostly to be mean. Many of the posters are probably not mean people, but behind the nameless and faceless comments they are free to carry on when Mom and Dad aren't home.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

We are aware that AI has been used by social networks to gain positive intervention strategies against many of the harms mentioned in this piece. And aware of efforts to enable AI to de-silo some of the locations where many who rely on for content of viewpoints matching their own. I would be interested to know if the authors have considered the use of AI in curbing the "ebb and flow of this problematic practice." While AI recognizes the ethics of legitimate rhetoric, and how AI is being used to minimize adverse effects on legitimate speech, within what is being acknowledged to be equivalent modern-day public forums. Mindful, of course, that exposure to ideas, in by itself, has clear value in a open marketplace of ideas.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

All viewpoints need to be accepted.

So what’s your problem then? You should be more tolerant of those who vilify and demean your opinions. All viewpoints need to be accepted.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

This issue became fully apparent in 2021 when the vaccine hesitant community was vilified, demeaned and attacked on the internet by posters demanding that they conform to the majority.

That went both ways. The free thinkers got absolutely delirious after being told what to think and were vilifying the vaccine and those who received it.

All kinds of hysterics and lunacy coming from people watching the likes of Alex Berenson, Infowars and other science illiterates.

All viewpoints need to be accepted

No, they don’t. Unserious viewpoints should not be accepted.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

It's wrong to spew hate.

Let's agree to respect the opinions of others.

No. Not always. Hate is not always wrong but stupidity is. Clear stupidity should be neither respected nor tolerated.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Online 'likes' for toxic social media posts prompt more − and more hateful − messages

It is not only that. The power of dislikes, of grievance, of provoking ire, of algorithmic radicalization cannot be discounted.

Like and dislikes are signs of eyeballs and interactions.

You can see it among these parts with certain posters of rightist and conspiratorial bent get numerous downvotes and few if any upvotes but are allowed a lot of leeway with streams of deranged non sequitur and spamming of infantile code words like "Ditto".

4 ( +6 / -2 )

spamming

Spamming, often with sock puppet accounts after being banned, deserves ridicule and derision. These people are unfit to take part in discussions - they lack the maturity and basic good faith.

Ridiculing them isn’t hate. It’s just throwing the rubbish out.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

This issue became fully apparent in 2021 when the vaccine hesitant community was vilified,

Vaccine hesitancy was not vilified, it was deemed a problem being made worse by antivaxxers that endlessly repeated false information, that is a perfectly valid target to eliminate, part of the toxic posts that unfortunately some outlets tolerate without reason.

posters demanding that they conform to the majority.

No, the demands are for claims to conform with the evidence, that is completely desirable. There is no point in repeating things already proven false.

All viewpoints need to be accepted.

Definetely not, a viewpoint that can be demonstrated false do not have to be accepted, that brings no benefit and instead increase the risks for others.

It's wrong to spew hate.

It is also wrong to repeat proved falsehoods, specially if they put in risk the health of others.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Clear stupidity should be neither respected nor tolerated.

Notice the name calling

I don’t see the name calling here. Nobody is being directly addressed or derided.

I think we should agree that clear stupidity shouldn’t be respected. If someone posts the best thing to do in the event of a suspected gas leak is to light a match, that needs to be derided. The walls need to close in on that.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Clear stupidity should be neither respected nor tolerated.

Notice the name calling.

Where?

You are demeaning and vilifying my opinion. Be more tolerant.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

I have left 1000's of comments on papers worldwide, and not once have I been rude, demeaning, offensive or down right crude. Even if I disagree with someone very strongly I will usually thank them for their comment and move on. I recently had one who accused me of being Jewish and then a Hamas supporter because I was against what is happening the population of Palestine, it was a very virulent nasty comment, and my answer was ...OK then, bye.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I respect you and your choice and do not advocate for you to be excluded from society for your choice.

Criticizing comments that repeat falsehoods is not excluding people from society as you misrepresent, it is just discarding participations that bring no benefit to any discussion.

On the other way everybody must live with the valid, justified consequences of their actions, people that make irrational choices can be excluded from certain activities when that means putting others at an elevated risk, even if they personally believe this not being the case, and that is a completely different situation.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Who define hate

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

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