Let’s talk about Mental Health Day, online bullying and comments on JustArsenal

Mental Health Day by Dan Smith

Having wrote for JustArsenal for years I can testify those who run it have a zero tolerance towards abuse.

Where other companies upload content and are happy to make some money, I know for a fact our admin wakes up and spends his morning going through the comments, having to unfortunately pick out language and conversations that are not appropriate.

Yet, JustArsenal has grown to a point where it’s unrealistic to moderate every word, and there are rules regarding how to comment.

Unfortunately, by the time action has been taken, the intended target has read what was sent. While the text can be deleted the hurt can last.

Even when the majority stand up to the sender and correctly question their behaviour the pain remains.

None of this is exclusive to one site.

Suicide due to online bullying is on the rise, as in depression in young people.

There remains an issue in the UK of grown adults thinking in the confines of a football match they can act how they want.

A grown man is currently on bail for attempting to head butt Roy Keane, another has admitted guilt to using a child’s death due to Cancer to ‘banter opposing fans. Men with families and serious jobs.

Small fines, sentences, stadium bans will be handed out. The scars don’t fade.

In my experiences of the Emirates, I have heard chants mocking race, speech impediments, sexual orientation, rape, etc.

I wonder how many who sing those songs truly go home and consider how they are making essentially a stranger feel?

It’s why I respected Xhaka for refusing to apologise for his stance, detailing the nature of abuse he was facing daily.

This though isn’t me trying to sigle out anyone, only your conscious knows if you have ever crossed a line, and it’s not my job to be your moral compass.

Tuesday 10th October is Mental Health Day in Britain, and it would be amiss of me to not use this platform not to spread awareness.

When you read how most organisations would like individuals to mark the day it’s simply to ask someone ‘are they okay’, to send a message, or even just an image to let them know you are thinking of them.

Readers will have people a lot more important in their lives than me who preach right and wrong, so I’m not expecting to change a culture.

I can only ask you to step back and review what you write before you press send.

The dangers of having the ability to send a point of view around the world within seconds means less care is taken. With great power comes great responsibility!

Have you strayed away from the topic?

Are you even debating football or attacking a person?

Has it got the point that you’re not even discussing the original subject anymore?

For what gain?

To get the last word?

To feel you won a trivial difference of opinion.

Because you can’t hear anything negative said about your football team does that warrant spite and being nasty?

Football is meant to be a disagreement you can have with each other …… it shouldn’t go beyond that.

Arsenal work with charities to encourage people to say how they feel, they wouldn’t want people being bullied just to stick up for them.

Because you don’t know what is going on behind the walls of someone’s house.

A smile could simply be a mask.

How someone presents themselves is an act they have learnt over time.

On JustArsenal we mostly communicate behind a phone or a laptop. We have zero idea who we truly are conversing with and what their life looks like.

What would you say if your comments were the trigger to stop someone going to work, a reason to stay in bed, a reason to self-harm, or worse?

Because it does happen ….

I have spoken to people so ill that their mind plays tricks on them, so a bus driver being rude to them makes a difference. Alternatively, a stranger smiling and being polite could save that person’s life.

Think of a packed city centre. As you walk through it, the stats say many are struggling. They just disguise it well. In reality their brains are very poorly.

The internet is no different. How we treat one another honestly could make such an impact on a person’s day.

I read some of the things people say and straight away it’s deeper than sport.

You have to be in a dark space to feel the need to use a football blog site as an arena to share anger and try and suppress people? For that to be your social scene, your way of getting attention.

Most bullies themselves need help.

The irony is this website should be an escape for people and I know, especially during COVID, many saw my writing as comfort. There couldn’t be a bigger compliment.

Yet on this day, this day of all days can I beg you all, even my harshest critics, talk to anyone if you ever feel low. Even if it’s me, I’m happy for admin to give you my email address.

Most of all and I pray we all live for this ……….

Let’s all try and be kind to one another.



Young Minds is a mental health charity for children, young people and their parents making sure all young people can get the mental health support they need. You can call their Parents Helpline on 0808 802 5544, Monday-Friday 9:30am – 4:00pm

Mind provides advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. Mind campaigns to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding. You can call their Infoline on 0300 123 3393, Monday-Friday 9:00-6:00pm.

Samaritans is a charity dedicated to reducing feelings of isolation and disconnection that can lead to suicide. You can call their 24-hour helpline on 116 123.

Shout is a 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling to cope. Text 85258.

Childline is a counselling service provided by the NSPCC for children and young people. You can call their 24-hour helpline on 0800 1111.

The Mix is a charity that provides free, confidential support for young people under 25 via online, social and mobile services. You can call their helpline on 0808 808 4994.

Tags bullying comments Mental Health Day


  1. Someone called me stupid on this site for selecting Arteta over Conte, who turned out to be a total failure at Spurs

    But I understand that it might be called a freedom of speech in England and many football fans are stupid

    1. lol Same here, although in a cheeky way even the admin got nutmegged,Why? cos i think spurs can’t challenge for the tittle this season and are not “the real deal” as they called them under the new manager and another calling for my ban cos i said Havertz can play as the tall CF instead of signing vlahovic. They can’t get under my skin though cos i’m not new to such neither am i bothered by what is typical of online forums that is not even business oriented. i can only feel sorry for those who take offence to insults due to being what people call “snowflakes”, not sure why i’ll take just a random person on an online forum serious cos they disagree with me and decide to go hostile they’re not worth it, just here to air my views,celebrate achievements of what unites us which is Arsenal and maybe catch fun. fair play to the moderators on here though, they’re doing a great job quite unlike some other blogs where hostility is the norm.

      1. I have a serious question to lawyers in England

        Can we call anybody stupid or idiot in England for the sake of free speech, without the risk of getting sued or caught by police?

        I’d like to know, because we could go to jail in other countries for those words

        1. Which countries?

          Do you think people should be jailed for insulting others? I’m all for people being nice to each other but that sounds like healing a wound through amputation.

          1. GCC countries. Two of my acquaintances weren’t allowed to return to their home country and to work for two years, in one of those countries, because they called their business partner stupid

        2. To answer your question, as you seem unaware of britush culture, while it is true that manay people espwoke types would love to imprison othe rpeoipkle for calling someone “stupid or an idiot”, there ris NO law in Britain that allows someone to b elegallty prosecuted for using thse terms. There IS a crime called hate speeech but to say someone is “stupid or an idiot” is merely free plain speech and simply someones personal opinion. I t is NOT a statement of fact but merely someones own opinion.

          It does not mean they are right; merely that they have said what they said, which is likely to be quite wrong and uneducated. But in Britain we do not, mercifully, punish people for careless speech and lack of education. Hope that helps you!

  2. Thanks for this important article

    Be thoughtful in your comments. Make criticism but don’t make it personal, don’t be rude and call people names or use foul language.

    I suffer from both bipolar and depression. Believe me words can hurt

    Treat people the way you would be like to be treated. If you make a mistake then apologize. I’ve said wrong things in the past and truly regret them

    Remember also that we all want the same thing for Arsenal to win trophies

    1. For Stephanie
      So sorry to hear of your plight.
      Yesterday I was reading an article about climate change on the bbc website and its impact on mental health and depression to individuals and my daughter asked me to explain what is depression? I had to look up the meaning on the internet because it is just a hard subject to explain. The most notable explanation I could find is that you have no pleasure in doing things that gave you pleasure in the past.

      I agree with everything you have said.

    2. Stephanie, the anonymity of the internet and social media, where people can say things they wouldn’t dare say to your face, makes the old adage of “sticks and stones…..” irrelevant today.
      All the best and support in facing your issues.

    3. For Stephanie
      Pl see the message I sent to Jon and replied to Davi on the same thread.
      For Davi
      I think we are both on the same page.
      I am as passionate and opinionated as anybody but I have had to tone down my language (which has been difficult for me) whilst putting my point across.
      There are too many grey lines.
      It does not only have to be about violence.
      There are many other issues.
      Twisting anything can be done by anybody. Lawyers are the best at that.

      I just read about an loan app in India which readily gives loans and harasses the individuals by taking its phone contacts and blackmailing them leading to individual suicides.
      You could argue that they are just trying to get their money back.

      Imagine if I had said something bad to Stephanie in a heated debate (who is suffering from depression) and that led to her taking an overdose. Am I not responsible for her action?

      What Dan is saying think before you press the send button.

  3. While obviously fully endorsing DANS welcome piece, outlining the fact that none of us really knows any other JA user,( though there will inevitably be a very, very few, who have met outside JA), the bar for what is commonly called ” verbal abuse” has become increasingly muddled and shallowed out.
    Free spech and non woke ideas are increasingly marginalised and wrongly regarded as “abuse”, when they are anything but that. There is not only a place for free, non abusive but still critical speech, and for vehement disagreements with other Gooners. But avital need for it too.

    That is itself a statement that i realise many will not allow and will not accept. Free speech is not only acceptable but is a vital protection, in any truly free society and we allow it to disappear at our peril.
    As important evidence for this truth, just look around our world at tyrant run countries and how ruthlessly ordinary folks forfeit their right to say aything at all and certainly any individuals rights to criticise their rulers are RUTHLESSLY CRUSHED and thos ewho care to speak out agaist tyranny and wish to DEFEND free spech are often never seen, or heard of, again but who simply disappear.

    Is THAT the sort of woke tyranny we really want in free BRITAIN AND OTHER LIBERAL MINDED COUNTIES?
    Otherwise my friends , some of you naive ones too, we are in mortal danger of the vreeping woke tyranny that has become so damaging in even free countries. Some people, confuse woke with liberalism . I say is it they are totally unlike. True liberals like me, believe in as much real freedom as spossible ,under thelaw, to live our lives free from state and regulatory control and from social stigma,for any perceived difference from the so called “norm” !

    “Normal or the norm” are words that are fundamentally ILLIBERAL AND ARE NOT WORDS I LIKE TO THINK OF AS HEALTHY ONES TO USE .
    A civilised society revels in its true diversity of all human kinds; culture,political beliefs, religion , or none, skin ethnicity, sexuality, gender, age, education or lack of it, health or frailty and a host of other unimportant irrelevent perceived “differences” Our race, historically, has always seeked out these attractive differnences, but THEN,instead of having the nous to see how valuable they are to us all, our race has , historically, seeked to crush and harm them and to pillary those who do not conform to the “norm”!
    To my mind “norm” simply means being anti diversity. We call each other white or black and those terms have become acceptable use of English.
    But they are not correct , as I A HAVE YET TO MEET A TRULYWHITE OR A TRULY BLACK PERSON.
    In years to come, I pray that thinking folk will no longer use such incorrect terms. Fully evolved folk will not and do notice skin colour at all and will certainly not comment on it, just as we do not coment on height, nose shape, left handedness etc etc.
    But my friends take my advice and disregard “woke” as being liberal, as it is ANTI LIBERAL AND BELIEVES IN HOLDING BACK FREE SPEECH.

    And defend true free speech for the vital freedom tool it has always been. Just imagine how vastly more evolved our human race enmasse would be today,IF ONLY we had defended free speech historically, as I usrge you all to do, in this too long diatribe , for which I apologise for its length!

      1. Pat,have you lost the ability to read? I specifically said abuse is NOT ok. I also endorsed Dans fine piece I then explained in deliberately great detail why criticism is NOT the same as abuse. Sigh!
        My main point was how the WOKE brigade, of which it seems you are one, failt distinguish betwen legit criticism and “ABUSE”.

        Woke is fervently ANTI LIBERAL and to be feared and avoided like the plague, as I said, VERY CLEARLY!

      2. I note with no surprise at all PAT, that my reply post to your post has again been censored by you. Why are you so anti free spech? And why do you not understnd the crucial difference between fair criticism and abuse?

        1. What censorship advocaats do not seem to realize is that they are actually censoring their own speech, as these things always come full circle at some point.

          Maybe not today or tomorrow, but at some point they’ll be unable to express their opinion on a subject they hold dear to their heart, and at that point they’ll have to look at themselves in the mirror.

      1. Thank you, sincerely! We do of course all right i, our own style, so I would not consider your true comment to be any surprise.

    1. Jon, I take it then, that you do not see yourself as fully evolved?
      The reason I ask this question, goes back to when, as part of deriding Mesut Ozil, you commented on his eyes!!
      Or the other example would be calling out Per Mertesaker when he admitted to being physically sick before a match and you called him weak and to realize how lucky he was!!

      The most recent example, was your “dressing down” of Daisy Mae for DARING to air her views in a article that she had taken time to produce – I believe you told her to stop writing articles and leave it to those who know about football!!

      I’m sure you class the three examples above as “free speech” but Dan is making the point that you, me, anyone needs to think about how the words used reflect on the reader… and how those words portray the writer.

      1. Ken all you are doing is pointing out my own hypocrisy as a normal human.
        YES GUILY AS CHARGED AND SORRY I AM FAR FROM PERFECT. Of course I have known my own fallibility and hypocrisy all my adult life, but I freely admit it!

        What I find with so many others who are also, hypocrites,being human, is that they deny its obvious existence in their own case!

        Btw, it is perfectly possible to be fully evolved while still being far from perfect. They are not opposite but complementary states of being, as true observers of humanity have long acknowledged.

        Do you admit being a hypocrite then KEN, AS WE HAVE NEVE SPOKEN OF IT IN YOUR CASE?Or are you that almost unique case of a human without ANY degree of hypocrisy?

        1. Here’s a challenge Jon – give me an example of where I have been a hypocrite on Just Arsenal… does that answer your question?

    2. By my reading, Jon, this is all true and very much worth saying.
      I don’t think you meant this to contradict the article (as some of the responses appear to indicate) but rather make the important point that we have to be very careful with restricting what we call abuse, otherwise we end up stifling legitimate free expression.
      It is very easy for an ill-intentioned actor to feign offence in order to discredit or shut down those they disagree with.

      1. Davi we are indeed true kindred spirits. i AM INTO MY SEVETIES ANDHAVE BEEN POLITCALLY ACTIVE ALL MY ADULT LIFE.

        I have for many decades past, well understood the truism that all humans are hypocrites and I do not mean that in any critical way, as we humans cannot help our common nature.
        Most, by far of us ordinary humans are decent, kind compassionate ordinarY folk with our own foibles, faults and human weaknesses, myself very much included.

        WE ARE ALL FALLIBLE and I think it important to recognise that, both in ourselves and in others.
        Criticism, meant honestly and not cruelly( “cruelly” itself being a much misunderstood word and not at all common, though to listen to some folk you might believe differently) is NOT anywhere near the same meaning as “abuse”, another totally overhyped and far too lightly used word.

        I feel like a voice in the wilderness standing , as I do, as a free thinking TRUE liberal, against the tyranny of the dreaded woke anti liberalism that is so steadily invading our free thinking minds and our common sense. I welcome future planned legislation to limit the power of woke which is steadily invading our civilised society and making it intolerant of others. Protecting TRUE free speech is now, as historically too, a vital safeguard of a free and tolerant society and I STAND FOR IT, til I leav this mortal coil.

    3. Hi Jon
      We haven’t spoken for a while.
      I have many disagreements in the past with you but I am mature enough to realise that it is not to hurt the reader especially after your life experiences and as result of my own experiences and thus have learnt over the years to respect other views. I am all in favour of free speech.
      BUT THERE IS A LINE at least in my view.
      You could say a former muslim cleric in this country (I think you know who I am talking about) had free speech and tried to incite violence against other communities. BTW I am not trying to offend any community least of all muslims and I have many muslim friends for life.

      This happens in other countries of different religions and views.

      The British government rightly came down strongly against him. But technically, they have violated his free speech even though it incites violence against all of us.

      Who draws this line. It cannot be any one person. It has to come from all of us.

      We have to think of the reader as Dan states and take a moment before pressing the send button.

      1. “had free speech and tried to incite violence against other communities”
        It is commonly understood that inciting violence is not protected speech from government intervention (even in the US, where freedom of speech is by far the most well observed, to my knowledge at least) – almost anything else is, or should be. There are grey areas, but I don’t think it’s so difficult to draw a reasonable line, and we should always tend towards the side of freedom over safety when it comes to speech.
        The problem we’re facing is that this concept is being twisted so that any form of “negative” speech is being treated or considered in the same way as inciting violence. It’s not uncommon to hear people state that they believe words can be violence in and of themselves – which is insane and will only make life more and more restrictive, to the point we will only be able to use “the approved” lexicon in public. I don’t want to live in a world like that and I doubt very much many others would.

        1. For Davi
          I think we are both on the same page.
          I am as passionate and opinionated as anybody but I have had to tone down my language (which has been difficult for me) whilst putting my point across.
          There are too many grey lines.
          It does not only have to be about violence.
          There are many other issues.
          Twisting anything can be done by anybody. Lawyers are the best at that.

          I just read about an loan app in India which readily gives loans and harasses the individuals by taking its phone contacts and blackmailing them leading to individual suicides.
          You could argue that they are just trying to get their money back.

          Imagine if I had said something bad to Stephanie in a heated debate (who is suffering from depression) and that led to her taking an overdose. Am I not responsible for her action?

          What Dan is saying think before you press the send button.

          1. “Imagine if I had said something bad to Stephanie in a heated debate (who is suffering from depression) and that led to her taking an overdose. Am I not responsible for her action?”

            No you wouldn’t be responsible in the slightest (assuming there was no foreknowledge or intent on your part). On the face of the situation you describe, how can you know what the other person was going through? We can’t go through life walking on eggshells in case the person we’re talking to is suffering from depression. It’s not a reasonable way to live.
            If anyone is suffering from depression, they should seek help from friends, family and doctors, but we can’t expect everyone else in the world to be responsible for our feelings.

            I was thinking about this term “victim” recently. If someone says something awful to me, and I brush it off, I’m not a victim, but if I take it to heart and spiral, then I am a victim – it’s not consistent or reasonable.

            1. For Davi
              I am definitely in disagreement with you here.
              We still may do damage with what we say but you have to take reasonable care.
              Each one has a responsibility.

              1. I’m sorry, but you don’t understand where this is leading. It’s important.
                We cannot treat words and actions as the same – we’re encouraging individuals in society to become weaker and weaker with this way of thinking – the consequence is for governments to become stronger and stronger, and more able to control what people say and do with the threat of prison behind it. We are slowly walking towards totalitarianism in the name of safety.
                I fully endorse you saying that people *should* treat eachother well (the golden rule as another mentioned further down this thread), but at the same time, we have to be clear that you are not responsible for my feelings, and I am not responsible for yours.
                Hypothetically, if you said something that inadvertently seriously touched a nerve with me, say due to something awful in my past you didn’t know about, that would be no fault of yours. How could it be?

      2. IGL, I realise your post ws meant in a good spirit and I thank you for that. I do however reject as muddled thinking what you say about the former Muslim cleric. I would point out that YOU , not I, intoduced this red herring into the debate and the wrong headed analogy you chose was indeed a poor and irrelevant choice of person.

        ALL right thinking folk agree this person is a bad person and a malign influence on impressonably young men. And it IS always young men, never young women, (who by and large have far more sense andsocial intelligence than we males, myself included). So by you rather pointlessly trying to include that bad person as an exampleof how not to behave , although you are of course right, it is not relevant in any way to the precise subject I posted about. Which is FREE SPEECH, UNDER THE LAW. You plainly MISSED MY IMPORTANT CAVEAT OF “UNDER THE LAW”. Being lawful at ALL times is always of vital importance.

        Please apply more real thought next time you question my deliberately well chosen words and do not again misconstrue what I wrote, so deliberately!


        1. Can’t think of HER name Hjon, but the female who embraced radicalism, only to then plead to come back to our shores, blows your “always young men, never young women” as completely ridiculous.

          1. For Ken
            The name is Shamima Begum.
            The problem with Jon is that he has difficulty accepting something apart from his view.
            In this case he is wrong.
            It is late in his life but he has a lot to learn. All of us need to learn but they should be open to learning. I have learnt just as much from youngsters as I have from older. But always learn to respect others.

            1. THANKS IGL – tgats rge young kadt I wasn’t trying to remember.
              You aee SI correct when you say rgar ibe can learn from any other human being… it doesn’t need race, gender, age or anything else, it just needs respect for others opinions and time to think and digest what they are trying to say.

            2. I reject as nonsense the complete twaddle you write about me. You know nothing about me and act as if you do. Why?

              1. For Jon
                Not clear if this post was for me or Ken.
                If it is not for me, pl ignore the message to you below:-
                I never pretend to know anybody but I am entitled to have an opinion just like you.
                You are welcome to reject it just like I can reject your OPINION and not claim that they are facts.

                I am always respectful to all as I believe I should be. If I have offended, I will gladly apologise.

                But it would also prove my point that I should be thinking of the reader (in this case you) and take time to ensure my responsibility and not pretend I can say whatever under the guise of ‘freedom of speech’.

          2. Ken, you are of couse well aware that in all rules in life, there are exceptions. Her surname was Begun and I am well aware that a very few women are also aggressive, muddled in thinking and of low intelligence, as are all people of either sex who choose breaking the law, rather than living within it.

            One exception does NOT negate the rule . But then you already knew that, but simply wished to try, even though you failed rather miserably, at a Jon put down. What a waste of your time. Sigh!

            1. No Jon, you put yourself down with your own crass statement.

              I didn’t state it as a indesputable fact, with Capital Letters to enforce said statement… you did!!

              If you want to make statements as facts, then make sure they ARE facts, as people will challenge you, not to put you down, but to correct you on your error.
              Simple really.

        2. Jon
          Muddled thinking. Really. It is a perfect analogy.
          As for men and not women this is not true. There are plenty of examples.
          Maybe you should send this post to yourself.
          ‘Adult manner.’ Really.
          I am not clear who is the adult here.
          The law needs more than a review as there is a letter of the law and a spirit of the law.
          There are plenty of loopholes.
          I also wish you well and will debate but read the text (others as well as yours) before pressing the send button.

  4. For Dan Smith
    Great subject for an article.
    Respect to you for bringing it up.
    None of us have a right to hurt anyone else.

  5. Nice article. I love it, I commend the admin’s work on this site trying to curtail abuse of any sort. It is also important to know that there are different types of personalities. What I can tolerate, another person may not. For example, I’m a young football fan still in university and in my circle of friends, we used to troll ourselves a lot. Until we found out that one of us was struggling emotionally or mentally. He almost broke down. Since then we always minimize our banter, although football banter is still always hot. Now that is for someone I know personally and physically. That kind of person could also have been hurt one way or the other online too. This article is expository and I like the way JA occasionally talk about non- football issues. ( though this is football related 🙂)

  6. Lovely article, especially with the abuse I’ve had to put up with from HH on here and another site.

    That said, I’m pro freedom of speech, and anti censorship, because the cure is far worse than the disease.

    Anyone who is pro censorship is anti democratic, and the world of censorship is impossible to police anyway, as we’ve been seeing over the last few years.

    What counts as abuse and disinformation, and who polices that? The corrupt governments? Sounds like a fantastic way for them to have total control.

  7. Excellent article Dan. I have strayed to the dark side at times (as a lot of others have) and this article will hopefully make people think before posting. Unfortunately, some people can’t debate without resorting to verbal bullying and personal ‘put downs’, just because their view does not align with someone else’s. Congrats on bringing the subject up Dan and I apologise to anyone I’ve upset on here due to my comments.
    Peace and Love to all and of course COYG.

  8. Sorry, I strongly disagree with this campaign. The focus really should be on making people stronger in the face of online abuse – if someone is highly sensitive to things said on the Internet, something will get to them at some point, regardless of what we decide to censor.
    I understand it’s difficult, and I’ve had my own issues with depression, like many people, but the answer is to become wiser and stronger – the world is a tough place, but you can’t expect it to change for you. That’s not a sustainable approach, and the result is less free speech, and less freedom overall.

    1. But surely you should expect others, who are stronger, to realize and adapt their emotions, as J. O. A. has so eloquently explained above?

      1. The consequence is censorship, very much including self censorship, of legitimate and well intentioned thought, for fear of causing offence and hurt feelings.

    2. But that’s putting responsibility on the victim
      Why not Just debate about football without being nasty
      Not hard is it ?

      1. See below response
        “Why not Just debate about football without being nasty”
        Wanted to add, I do agree with this, and I do follow it at all times, I’m just talking about the other side of things – people have the power not to take things so hard, and it’s better for them to understand that and not see themselves as victims

    3. Davi, You will not be surprised that I endorse and support your post entirely. Some folk , naively, imagine that unless you accept the prevailing woke tyranny in its entirety , that you cannot be a true and decent, compassionate and caring person.

      In my long life experience it is the social media virtue seekers who are lifes bullies , in the main. Censorship is dangerous, wrong headed and rarely of REAL help to humanity at large.

      1. Appreciate you, Jon. I am concerned society has already moved in the censorship direction, and the consequences will be felt down the line.
        There’s a line by Benjamin Franklin, something like “a society that is willing to give up a little liberty to gain a little security will lose both”, and it’s so true, one of the most important phrases for the modern age I’ve come across imo – we saw it with the response to the terrorist attacks of 2001, with that leading to governments being able to spy on and detain their citizens far more easily, for reasons far beyond potential terrorism, and this is very similar to my mind. They want to censor people for fear of people’s mental health, security. It won’t lead anywhere good.

      2. Perhaps if we had censored the likes of Hitler and Trump Jon, humanity would have been spared many millions of deaths?!

        1. Plainly censoring such monsters is not possible, so you talk about hypothicals only Ken. THEREFORE UNSURPRISINGLY, I DO NOT AGREE WITH YOUR POINT, FOR THE UMPTEENTH TIME.
          If we could have somehow prevented those monsters being born, then undoubtedly we would have saved many lives. But that , again, is a hypothetical and therefore not of interest to a realist such as I.

          1. Of COURSE we could have stopped the likes of Hitler, if the masses had stood up and challenged this bully head on.
            His rhetoric was based on hatred and, just like Trump, was built on lies. If the German /American governments had censored these megalomaniacs before they were able to spread their lies, millions of people would not have lost their lives. Staying quite under the guise of “free speech for all” was the biggest betrayel of all.

        2. Censorship is what Hitler, stalin etc etc did to maintain control. Once we start censoring people it becomes impossible to know if censorship is being implemented fairly/correctly and society will inevitably be manipulated to move in whichever direction the ruling government wants.

      1. Yeah, the term victim is pretty overused in today’s society. We should try to avoid enabling people to see themselves as victims – it only makes things worse for them

  9. It’s putting the responsibility of individuals for their emotions.
    I do understand it can be difficult, sometimes extremely difficult, and I’m not claiming this is a black and white thing, but i do think the other side of it needs to be emphasised a lot more – receiving online abuse doesn’t make you a victim. Your reaction to it often does, and you can control that, or learn to control it – to a large extent at least.

  10. Surely all people have to do is abide by the “golden rule” of treating others the way you would like to be treated. Healthy debate, differing opinions, but no personal abuse.

    1. Perfect OG Perfect.
      The only trouble is, the noisiest advocate for free speech within JA, goes off on a tangent if challenged or responded to like for like.
      Since when have we, as humans, not looked after those less fortunate than others… apart from the likes of Amin, Hitler, Mussolini, Pul Pot, KKK and Donald Trump to name just a few?
      That’s not woke, that’s just being civilised.

      1. Thanks Ken. My personal take on the anonymity of social media, is that it gives the opportunity of every cockcroach to crawl out from under their rock and make comments they wouldn’t make to someone’s face. They would quickly go to water in any resulting confrontation.
        Thankfully I still retain faith, like you, in the general good in people (which I take at face value until they show me different) and their care for others.

      2. You refer, incorrectly , to me as the noisiest advocate for free speech. I describe myself not as a noisy advocate but as a pasionate one.

        Were I WOKE – perish the thought – doubtless I would regard being called the “noisiest” advocate as a direct insult.
        But it is not an insult, but perfectly fine free speech, even though an incorrect choice of phrase!

      3. hi ken, been a while since we last chatted, hope all is good with you. now,i have to say , that, it is not always the noisiest one,in any group, that is the bully, no sir.it has been my experience down through the many many years that i have been on this earth,that,sometimes,the bully wears sheeps clothing. the bully does not have to be loud or noisy one in the group.it can happen that the quieter person, the jealous person,the bitter person,the logical person,the elder members,the younger members. in fact , everybody ,has the potential to be a bully,absolutely everybody.so, me personally, would never go for the louder person and call them a bully, i would look further than that,i would look for the snake in the grass who hisses and their fans jump aoard.there are many forms of bullying, as we all know,so lets all have a care while we are composing our comments.i dont know if this comment will be published,but here goes.

  11. The social media and anonymity enables people to abuse each other with impunity, as if it’s a digital dumpyard for all the BS we are filled with. Rather than dealing with our BSes as we mature, people have foind a way to dispose off such behaviors conveniently. And any person using social media must be aware of this imo. You aren’t meeting people and communicating as these social media platforms want ypu to believe, but it’s more like you meeting avatars of people, a figment, a gamified character, that people build and change with time.

    And as preventive measure, children should be mentored to face criticism from their early ages. That’s the nature of upbringing. We may consider ourself too different from other animals but some fundamentals don’t change. Every guardian teaches their offspring how to cope with what’s out there. Trying to change the world seems to be an exercise in futility than rationality. Instead, the children must be groomed properly so they aren’t surprised or shocked to encounter such abusive and offending behavior from people. I don’t mean that they should be abused by the guardians, far from it. But a child should be made to understand that the world outside will be very different than living among the loved ones. I think time and effort is well spent on taking care to groom a child properly than to trying to change the world to make up for failed upbringing and botched parenting.

    But for the people who are already suffering from depression and mental illnesses, my advice has always been the same. Social media is not a place for you. I realized this the hard way myself. And with depression, you should look for physical connections and communication more, than socializing digitally. Social media is not invented to be conducive to mental health, it’s rather the opposite. Social media actually isolates you more than we realize.

    But I just don’t think that digital censorship is the way to go. It’s not changing anything to be honest. Censoring certain people for bad behaviors and abuses is like assuring ourselves to be safer by blindfolding ourselves. That won’t change much imo, not to be called a preventive measure. That’s more like panic reaction to problems and like any panic reaction, it’s not sustainable at all.

    Honestly, I don’t see a solution for this, if people continue to use social media. We can be considerate to others, we may treat people the way we treat ourselves, but there will always be people who won’t give a sh**. And we can only remove their avatars, not the people behind them. They will come again and do the same. All this effort should instead be focused on the people who need help instead. Don’t let them be in social media for an extended time period, help them stay away from potential danzer zones within the web. Help them take control of their lives bit by bit, help them work on their habits, on their mental patterns, etc. If we spend a fraction of time we do promoting censorships, in helping needy people around us in their lives, we would’ve done a far fruitful job instead.

    Asking for safe places in social media, is like asking for safety amidst a war zone. Even if hurt isn’t directed towards us, we are never far away from it. A random undirected debris full of hurt can make us suffer. And solution is to not be in a war zone, and if we insist to be, we should be ready for it.

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