People get Brave – and Inappropriate – on the Internet

I was talking to a friend about the neighborhood “Garage Sale” websites in the Dallas area. People say they check them often not to buy things, but because they are so entertaining. As we all know people make brave, bold, and inappropriate comments on the Internet.

Here is an example that really bothers me. A mom just had her fourth child, and the longtime family dog was not adjusting well to the new baby. The mom posted on the site that she is heartbroken to have to give up their family pet, but felt like she had no choice. There were responses from other moms who told her that she was not trying hard enough and they were very unhappy that she would give away her family pet.

What if this mom and those who responded negatively just met at a party? The mom tells her new acquaintances that she just had her fourth child, and her beloved dog is not coping well. She gives examples of how her newborn’s safety has been compromised. I am quite sure the feedback would not be to tell this beaten-down mom to try harder and ride out the situation. They would tell her that no matter how much it pains her to think about it, she needs to find a new home for her dog.

We do not need to make comments over the Internet on situations that we do not know about intimately. I am constantly baffled at why people forget their manners and integrity when they are in front of a computer, and speak before thinking about how their words are inappropriate and hurtful. Before you respond on the Internet, pretend you speaking to the person next to you. See if you would have the same response or words if this were the case. Let’s all do our part to make the Internet a more polite place