Sunday, January 23, 2011
The Family Circus Effect
When I was growing up the Family Circus was always the last comic on the page. Sitting there on the bottom right, it was only natural to read it after all the rest, thereby spoiling an otherwise enjoyable experience. (Since, as we all know, the Family Circus sucks.) Something good (the funny pages) was rendered unsatisfying by something bad (Family Circus).
That’s what CBC News, internet version, is for me. No matter how illuminating, entertaining, informative, or thought-provoking the article might be, at the bottom are the comments. Sometimes there is a diamond among them, but for the most part they are tripe, garbage, and crap. It isn’t that I disagree with their viewpoints (even though I usually do); it is that those viewpoints are expressed in boring, offensive, uninformed, or just plain erroneous ways. They vex me; vex me sorely.
All of those people should do what I do: save your comments for your friends or your blog. Aggravate only the people around you. (And now we know one of the chief reasons I started this, to vent and air my opinion without annoying the innocent. Sort of a “smoking section” of the internet, if you will. I can stink all I want, and the only people who will suffer are the ones who came in here willingly.)
Another answer is for me to simply avoid the whole issue and not read the comments. I do try, but it took me years of training to get my eyes to skip past the Family Circus without reading it, and I imagine I will be just as slow to learn this new lesson as well. Not reading something I know will drive me nuts is easier said than done.