|An Off Switch. Yesterday.|
An online petition has been gathering momentum recently in which a group of offended parents have been campaigning for the removal of an internet thing that they don't really understand in the vain hope that it'll make any difference whatsoever.
This is based on increasing evidence that some nasty mean-spirited people have said some nasty, hurtful and spiteful things using the vaguely understood internet thing.
"This thing never used to happen in my day", said angry Father Simon Airconditioner, "Before this internet thing that I don't really understand started, there was no such thing as bullying. Nobody said anything nasty or sent nasty text messages via SMS, nothing like that. And the worst thing about this weird internet thing - that I don't properly grasp, for the record - is there's no way of stopping it. You can't switch it off, or stop looking at it, or even use any of the various easily accessible well-documented methods provided by this internet thing to do anything about it. Apparently."
"It's also a well known fact that if we remove this internet thing", he continued, "then because the bullies are all there they'll shrivel up and die or have nowhere else to go, or something. I think that's how the internet works. I think I saw it on Hackers".
"The way I look on it is like this", explained Internet Professor Doctor Kelvin Babybel, "If I walked up to you and just started poking you in the face with a stick, you wouldn't like it. And If I was still doing it in twenty minutes, this whole poking-you-in-the-face-with-a-stick thing, you'd probably do something about it. Like punch me in the face, or maybe walk away. And if you did punch me in the face, I'd absolutely deserve it. In fact in all honesty you'd probably have done something way before twenty minutes had elapsed. One thing you certainly wouldn't do is compose a carefully constructed online campaign calling for the banning of sticks."
"And lets say, in theory for some weird reason that that is exactly what you did, and all sticks were banned - I'd probably just throw some stones at you, or flick elastic bands at your eyes - or simply push you into a hedge. Or I'd use a slightly different type of stick. The old classics."
This Anti-bullying campaign has the full support of the Daily Mail. Just to the left of an article which is saying nasty disparaging things about some normal sized teenagers who aren't size zero, the fat freaks.
Serious hitting-the-nail-right-on-the-head footnote from Conor Gleeson; "It seems that parents/adults in general aren't getting involved in areas they should be such as taking to their children about bullying, teachers becoming more active in making sure bullying is kept out of the schools but they're happy to attack the internet blindly. They should be teaching children how to manage using sites better, teaching them to come to them when they need to and not let themselves get caught in this web of hate. Kids generally don't feel like they can come to adults about bullying, probably because a lot of adults don't seem to do anything about it so they stay quiet and just take the abuse online/offline. If kids felt more comfortable coming forward about it, then we'd see actual progress."