Internet is a great stage for anyone to climb on. The new democraty is a blessing, but it has a dark side. Self-announced stars are begging for comments, but are uncapable of dealing with it.
It’s business as usual on YouTube: teenage girls in their parential bedroom, dressed up like russian prostitutes, begging for likes. Occasionally one of them breaks through and turns into exactly the kind of person that pushes the weak underdogs into sorrow by influencing them: fill your lips, botox your eyelids; be like me. And buy my sponsor’s mascara. Like me like I love myself.
It has become business as usual on YouTube: young girls dressed up like russian prostitutes in their parantial bedroom, begging for likes. Ocasionally one of them breaks through and turns out to be just like all those bags of bones from the catwalk, influencing weak teenagers to do like they do: fill your lips, botox your eyebrows, be like me. Buy my advertiser’s mascara. And like me like I love myself.
The fine art of writing is suffering from devaluation, too. As a fanatical reader and professional journalist, I am convinced there have to be quite some undiscovered authors out there. I started to visit some facebookgroups where these people are supposed to hang around and support each other, only to discover that writing talent and self reflection are qualities that usually leave the room hand in hand.
‘You are obviously not here to make new friends’
Every now and then I bump into something with potential quality, but those texts disappear quickly under new postings by people who are on the edge of publishing their first bestseller, previewing bits of it, asking the others how they like what they read. Some time ago, I started answering some of them, avoiding the very worst. I drafted some of these fragments by removing the spelling mistakes and reconstructing the worst sentences.
You won’t believe the amount of abuse that came over me. ‘You are obviously not here to make new friends’, someone wrote back (actually true). ‘If you don’t like it, why read it?’. ‘Who is that arrogant motherf*cker?’ In shock, I scrolled through the reactions. After a while, it occurred to me that under all these self called bestseller-writers I was the only one to ever react. No reactions, no likes whatsoever.
Neither of these about to break through bestseller-writers are open for constructive critisism or advice, I learned. No way they can deal with that. They ask for comments, but they wish for confirmation. Confirmation of exactly what they bear so badly: writing talent. Read me and like me, or else close your mouth.
Like me or shut up.