Today, the buzziest item at the morning meeting here at Talk was the death of Kanye West's mom, Donda. Now, it's well known around these parts that Kanye and I are secretly married, so my interest in the story is a natural, but quite a few staffers find the uproar following her passing... shocking. I know that my first thoughts after I heard she died shortly after plastic surgery were less than charitable, but bloggers, and even New York magazine, were outright mean. According to Washington Post staff writer Teresa Wiltz,
blog dwellers stepped over an imaginary line of restraint. And stomped on it, again and again, monsters from the id coming out to play: "hahahah too bad," one taunted. "VANITY KILLS!!!"
One "fan" posting on Bossip.com took the time to compose a poem in her honor: Supersized menu at Mickey Dee's/No wonder I cant see my knees . . ."
I suppose we shouldn't be shocked that people can be so rotten. Wiltz goes on to muse that thanks to TMZ and their celebrity-stalking ilk, the predicted utopian world of the Internet has turned into something much more sinister, where every mis-step is broadcast for all to ridicule. Honestly, it's not surprising. Trolls are old news, and the celebrity sites have been well entrenched for years. But what I still don't understand is why people feel so free to say ugly things when their identities are hidden. I admit, I'm not always nice, but I feel guilty for those bad thoughts that I don't voice or type... is that unusual? Do you feel ok about stepping over that "imaginary line of restraint," so long as no one knows it's you?