Posts Tagged ‘mobile devices’

Keyboard warriors and people who are continuously glued to their mobile phone screens walking around like zombies, the wonders of modern technology as it seems that nowadays people always feel braver, or perhaps more comfortable, behind the safety of a screen than properly interacting with other members of the human race.

Being a campaigner for marine conservation and gender equality, I quite often come across the plight of the keyboard warrior so I am relatively immune to it. But let’s have a look at what one really is on urbandictionary.com:

A Person who, being unable to express his anger through physical violence (owning to their physical weakness, lack of bravery and/or conviction in real life), instead manifests said emotions through the text-based medium of the internet, usually in the form of aggressive writing that the Keyboard Warrior would not (for reasons previously mentioned) be able to give form to in real life.

2. The term is a combination of the word ‘keyboard’ (the main tool by which the person expresses his/her latent rage) and ‘warrior’ (due to the warrior-like aggression, tendency towards violence, headstrong nature and propensity towards brute force as a means of resolving conflict rather than more subtle means dependant on finesse).

3. The Keyboard Warrior seeks to use the power imbued in his ‘weapon’ to effect death and destruction (in a strictly-metaphorical sense) upon his foes (other virtual identities he has encountered on the internet). In essence, the keyboard (ie. text input ability) allows the keyboard warrior to manifest his true warrior nature in a safe and removed environment, from which no real-life repercussions.

4. Keyboard Warriors are generally identified by unnecessary rage in their written communications, and are regarded as ‘losers’ by other virtual identities on the internet.

I think we all are guilty of taking on the Keyboard Warrior persona at some point in our lives. It doesn’t mean that we are naturally violent in nature; it can mean a person is passionately trying to get their point across via websites etc and in the process rallies others into an accidental hate campaign. Check out Southeastern train’s Twitter feed, normal people losing their tempers provoked by immeasurable frustration.

Another example is when one of my friends put up a post stating that organ donning should be compulsory upon death, I argued this point saying that everyone should have the choice. The next thing I know I am being criticised for my opinion because it did not match others. I was unnecessarily persecuted and many hoped that I did not have children because of my opinion when if they had actually read my comment, they would have seen that I wasn’t against organ donning, far from it, I just said that people have a right to choice.

This was a classic example of people being overrun by their emotions on the internet and in turn making them judgemental before they have all of the information, they then react in an aggressive manner and inadvertently form a hate storm against someone who was just making a comment the same as them. This often happens in very closed end, influential circles.

Of course you do get the others who deliberately stir up people to get a reaction. Under the ‘Troll’ heading, I see this a lot when involved in online campaigns. These people have no interest in the campaign, they deliberately intervene to either cause a distraction, or just to stir up emotions even more. As there is a high element of maliciousness involved, I think these types of Keyboard Warriors are the worst – they also clearly have too much time on their hands.

Let’s have a look at the closely related mobile zombie. These individuals are high in population and can be seen virtually every minute of every day. I am also guilty of being one and I often see them on my commute to work on the train in the mornings and evenings.

They often form a stance of standing or sitting, neck and head is curved forward and eyes are fixated on the screen of either a mobile phone or eReader device. They very rarely look up to see where they are walking, and if you are in desperate need of a priority seat on the train, don’t be annoyed at these people, subtly get their attention so they move for you.

While these individuals are relatively harmless, the risk comes in when they are walking and staring into their mobile devices, we are not in China and do not have cell lanes after all. I don’t need to say that walking along and not looking where you are going is a hazard to the person doing the walking and the person being walked into.

So where is the resolution here?

Well we could always revert back to the pre-mobile device age, or we could just think before we post and actually look where we are walking. After all, is a post, text, email really that important that you neglect basic manners?

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It’s always fun reading a post where an advocate for technology finds negativity about it, but I genuinely do believe that it is a main cause of society’s anger and lack of consideration nowadays.

Let’s leave out the fact that we have a government who want the UK to be the most technologically advanced in Europe – well let’s put it this way I would feel safer with a bunch of chimps running the country, but everyone, and I do mean everyone, walks around with some form of mobile device strapped to them like it is some wanted growth.

I am guilty of that too but, not to the point where I sacrifice my manners and awareness just so I don’t miss the latest post on Facebook and end up bumping into people walking down the street.

The corporate business bods paved the way for this so I don’t know why I’m complaining as I am partially at fault here if we want to the picky. The Blackberry for office workers meant we could get outside of the office and not minimise productivity, we actually went back to having lives, or as close to one as possible.

Now everyone is doing it, we are connected all of the time to the web, and Facebook and Twitter allows us to make our voices heard to the masses. This is to the extent where I see couples on a train sitting opposite one another, and they are programmed into their mobile phones rather than actually having a conversation. Make the best of it, they are probably having a conversation on Facebook.

The art of conversation is also becoming a dying…Art.

Modern day electronics provides us with a good escape from life, economic crisis anyone, what economic crisis? But I do genuinely believe that concentration levels are at an all-time low, after all why would you want to do boring work when Burty your friend is updating Facebook with mediocre drivel. But it is not all like that, I have some friends who post hilarious things on Facebook which is great at lifting your spirits first thing in the morning.

I do have a good way at quantifying this theory though, observe:

I have swim for over 30 years and each year the awareness in the pool gets worse. Albeit we are now at that time of year where we have to deal with January swimmers. Even though they will be gone soon I am seeing a complete decline in lane discipline, barging into each other etc…

Another example, my car was virtually stationary and some idiot destroyed my wing mirror when driving past. My car is built like a tank! Now this one could have been down to bad driving on their part but still the lack of awareness is shocking.

But alas things can always change. Maybe the Google goggles might help us all see more clearly while still being tapped into our mobile devices.

Google Glass detail

Perhaps the word “fault” is not correct here, perhaps “responsibility” is better. The reason being is that this question falls in-line with a phrase I have heard several times, it is also one that really makes my blood boil.

“I will answer your question, but I am not responsible for the answer”.

I hate this, and its illogical, how can you not be responsible for the answer, it came out of your mouth. What I hear when someone says this phrase is ‘I don’t care about your feelings or how my answer will affect you, I am just going to say it anyway’.

My partner used to use this phrase – funnily he doesn’t much anymore.

BUT, more to the point, if I see something offensive on an iPad/mobile device while on the train for example, is it my fault/responsibility for looking or your fault/responsibility for displaying such items in close proximity to other people?

Several years ago when I used to take the coach to the city, one of the male passengers had a suspect magazine, one of these silly publications like Nuts or something like that, and was asked to put it away or be banned from the coach. Don’t get me wrong in the privacy of your own home that is final, but on a coach – so what is the difference between this and the modern apparatus of a table PC or smartphone?

Photos or moving images its all the same surely, but on a mobile device the evidence is harder to pinpoint. You can exit out of a video or photo in a second on a device (of course this never happens when you want it to), and you can’t go into another persons’ device without permission, or even a warrant, but a magazine is a magazine. Its there, it can’t change its format, the best you can do is hide it.

I spoke to a police officer friend about this and they said: “in public, there may be outraging public decency but you would need to be sure to evidence that… It could even be a section 5 Public Order offence…”

Realistically I think we are still in no-mans land with this one, and for now it just boils down to good old respect. If you are out in public and know there is a particular scene coming up in a film you are watching on a mobile device then try and fast-forward it or flick to the next scene.