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Netizens - fourth power

2011/10/08 | 493 views | Permalink | Source

The word comes from internet and citizens. And they may be described using Lucian's words: "a pack of rabid dogs" (yes, from Underworld). We've been discussing this countless times, and I think more people should be vocal about this pathology. Yes, this is borderline psychotic behavior. I frequent both Korean and Western websites and boards. I witness surges of hysteric posts on DCGall. Fans are demanding, that's true, but normal fans know that the object of their admiration is just a human being. Netizens, chained to the internet with their mobiles, can post everytime and everywhere, unlike usual people who has to go to work. And shielded by the anonymity of the web, they post what may be seen as some delusions of really sick minds.

Korean netizens are horrible breed. Obsessed with people being over the top fashionista and beautiful, they set up a bunch of standards that every idol HAS to meet. If she/he doesn't, they open the gates of hell. One thing that makes them particularly scary is their "flock thinking" as I call it with pleasure. Evolution has endowed us with conscience and it's not a crime to use it, for the neurons' sake! But that would mean leaving the warm, cozy place among others who think like you, who support you and who stand by you in your crusade to destroy/elevate someone else's image. There is no breaking out from this group, and everyone who committed this terrible, deathly sin can't go back. Ever. And it suffices if only one person writes a comment on some tickly topic and the rest will follow. The perfect example of this we had both in real life and in the drama. Real life Tablo situation (Epic High band). One netizen doubted his master degree and he posted that on the web. There are always those who hate an artist without any particular reason. So the website created by this one guy filled with resentment, soon got thousands of members gathered there only to bash Tablo and claiming his diploma was fabricated. Tablo took it to the court and didn't comment (wise move, because "only sinner explains himself") but asked the University in US to issue the proof. And the proof that he really got the diploma there was handled to the Korean court. The guy who set this up was accused, and his explanation illustrates virtually all netizens who enjoy this kind of dirty games - because he was jealous of Tablo's achievements and he himself is a loser (he really said something of this kind, I'm not making things up). Tablo got the justice but his image is tarnished forever. The second, fictional example (but heavily based on what is really happening) was in The Greatest Love drama, where netizens destroyed the life of a young singer basing only on rumors, and creating false rumors as well. Once you create one, it starts to live on its own and it's very hard to kill it after that.

Seeing how imperfect I am, instead of trying to improve myself, I take on everyone in showbiz. This is apparently the logic of netizens. In more than 90% of cases, people who write lies and demand ultimate sacrifices are lazy bunch of those who take pleasure from venting their own miserable life. They criticize and mock every little detail. They demand idols (actors included) to be some superhuman being that doesn't sleep, doesn't eat, doesn't date and doesn't sweat. It's even more dangerous than fangirls. Fangirls' territory is fantasy, delusions, but netizens operate in reality. What they write on Nate, Naver or DCGall (and others) reverberates and is taken into the consideration by agencies apparently.

Netizens don't like the flow of the story? Don't worry, we change the writer in the middle of the series to please them. Actress wants to be treated like a human being? Netizens accuse her of being "obnoxious and selfish". Now they can feed on G-Dragon situation foretelling Big Bang decline. Examples can be added by dozens.

Netizens are like fourth power, right after executive, a legislature, and a judiciary. Sometimes it can serve a good cause, because even Caesars in Rome knew that it was this mob that had power in the Empire. But mostly it serves as a private, free of charge, distorted psychoanalytic session. Lately DCGall was engulfed in hateful comments on JYJ (I wrote about that not so long ago) that were nothing but fabricated rumors. The bad thing is - it all falls under the domino effect. One person starts and the rest follows. Just like avalanche.

As much as netizens are crazy and scary with their urge to criticize everything, they seem to be indifferent to the real value of the idol. They criticize the hair, clothes, 200 grams of fat on some 45 kg girl, not enough of choco abs on a guy, but somehow the essence of such idols escapes their mind. They don't have anything of some sense to say about singing or acting. I rarely see the comments stating that someone did wrong on the stage or in acting. Instead there is always some "kyaaing" around even if the performance was a fail.

It's not uncommon to hear/read about blood letter, threats, stalking and sending suspicious things to agency or idols. Netizens have broken many careers, and created buzz around trifle things, usually long time buried but dragged back to the surface just to serve some unclear purpose. Personal problems have "personal" in the name, right? Idiotic netizens shouldn't transpose their own problems onto someone else they don't know and never will.

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