It is late and I am not going to stay up all night waiting for the results of a referendum in Scotland. It’s not that I am unconcerned. I am, indeed, intensely curious. However, there’s no way my opinions are going to affect the outcome and I have looked at both sides of the issue and can come to terms with it, either way.
My topic for tonight is sort of an extension of last night’s. Last night I suggested that law enforcement would be improved if the police just outsourced the investigative work to people on the internet, partly because the amazing power of the world wide web has proven so effective at actually locating criminals, but because the police suck so badly at it.
Tonight I want to talk about ‘naming and shaming.’ I just saw a sight about airline passengers behaving egregiously, people would send in their photos, like a white haired, rather chubby gentlemen sleeping with his shirt off and a baby pooping in the middle of the aisle, stuff like that.
I have an internet friend who actively pursues plagiarists on-line (Ira Lightman – he’s been written up in newspapers for it, so I guess it would not be a breach of etiquette to use his name) He gives them a warning and, if they don’t apologize and change their ways, they get named, suffering disgrace in the poetic community, fwiw.
All sorts of bad behavior gets outed on the internet. The problem is that, just as in real life, the people who behave shamelessly are impervious to shame. They see their pictures on the internet and think ‘Hey, I’m famous!”