It’s easier to be an asshole to words than people

I saw a post up on xkcd today, the actual post is after the jump. I think back to all the interactions I’ve had since being introduced to the wonderful world of the internet way back in 1994. There was a text based online game called a MUD that a friend of mine introduced me to, it was an online game, and the screen was nothing but words describing rooms, objects in the room, and the people in the room. It was an interesting social environment. There was the good, the bad, and the horrific. The handle I use and the name of this site was created on that game. I remember starting out and being completely new to the whole phenomenon known as the internet, I used the social skills that I had learned for the past 18 years of life as a guide for how one should behave in this new environment. But it did not take me long to come to the rationalization that the mud, is simply just a game, that all the actions done are mere words. I was an asshole before in reality, but damn, it became REAL easy to be an asshole when all you see are words – the nameless, faceless masses that exist behind other monitors connected by a series of wires simply didn’t exist in reality for me; all I saw were a user name and words.

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