Thursday, April 17, 2008

“Call the human flesh search engines!”

How's that for a chilling cry of a virtual mob?

Calling out someone who they have deemed an enemy (in this case, a Chinese student at Duke who tried to get Free Tibet demonstrators and Chinese loyalist demonstrators to talk to each other when she found them facing each other down outside the cafeteria), and collaborating to collect and post every bit of personal information they can find about her, as a the initial act of retribution.

NYT: "Chinese Student in U.S. Is Caught in Confrontation"

With this background, one doesn't need to be able to read the language to get the gist of what's going being done on this Chinese board.

Speaking from experience, the anonymity of the Web and the corresponding lack of personal accountability (and even attribution) enable the worst kind of vindictive mob behavior and groundless personal attacks. No fear of the future? I'm not so sure when I see things like this.

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