I know this has been said before and much better elsewhere, but what is it about online forums, groups and Facebook pages that makes people go a little bit nuts?
This weekend, a Facebook group that I am a member of has exploded with people getting aggressive, nasty posts being written and then someone being removed from the group. This has led to another (rival?) group being set up and then the majority of the members of the first group being added to the second (but with some notable exceptions). So I’ve ended up being a member of yet another new group on Facebook. And most of them do the same thing, have the same core group of members and include the same discussions. I find it exhausting.
Yes, I could just leave the groups and have done with it, but from time to time I have asked questions on these Facebook pages and have received some helpful replies, and other times I have answered others’ questions and hopefully have given them a little help. And that is what I like about them – helping others out and receiving help in return. However, there always seems to come a point when the group explodes or implodes over some small matter that gets blown out of proportion. In this case, it has not helped that the group is made up of a) women, b) expats and c) mothers. This seems to be a fatal combination.
I’ve read elsewhere, and I fully agree, that you should think about what you are writing online from the perspective of whether you would say the same thing to a person’s face, and this is what I try to stick to online. I am not really a confrontational person but I accept that there will always be people who just rub me up the wrong way and who I won’t really get on with. I am not naive enough to think that everyone should just get along with each other, but why does it seem that whenever you get a big group of women together online (and this seems to apply to mums especially), there is bitchiness and cat fighting? You would think that we would have found a better way than resorting to behaving like small children in the playground [sigh]