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Beware the Internet rage charade

Social media has turned into just another way for the media to manipulate us, parlaying our 'anger' into dollars
Facebook graffiti in Jerusalem (photo credit: Gordon/Flash 90)
Facebook graffiti in Jerusalem (photo credit: Gordon/Flash 90)

It’s Sunday. By 5pm, someone from MSNBC or Fox News will say something rude to the microphone and the rage charade will begin. It could be a Palin, Baldwin or a broadcaster looking for a cheap headline.

Once it hits Twitter and Facebook, we’re all expected to express our rage at what was said from the far left/right about the far right/left. By Monday morning, there will be hundreds of thousands of comments, Tweets, talkbacks and posts. The sheep do their job well. The Facebook posts will usually start off with “If you think that … is right/wrong, like and share this post.” You’ve got to act, netizen, don’t you care??

Welcome to the commercial rage game. The actors and broadcasters know exactly how to push our buttons. The media conglomerates are willing piñatas. Post-IPO Facebook and Twitter, facing investors for the first time, play along as long as ads appear on every page.

And me, I’m bored of this neverending bad episode of Tom & Jerry. Unlike the rage charade participants, I don’t live in a black and white world. I’m bold with my decisions and not my opinions. I’m bored of outrageous comments from actors whose movies I’ll never see. While I love Pink Floyd, why would anyone expect a musician who became a millionaire by age 25 to have moderate views? Instead of burning my Roger Waters CDs, I yawned. You mean a filthy rich British aristocrat has a Jewish obsession?! I too am offended at what he said and I expressed it privately to real friends without contributing to Facebook’s pageviews.

I’m not telling you not to get involved in the world around you. There has to be a deeper and more meaningful way than this. I’ll keep looking, but I know the answer won’t be found on cable TV or social media comments from strangers.

And when Tuesday begins with a boring news cycle, the rage charade begins anew…

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About the Author
Kenny Sahr is a startup marketing executive. His first startup, founded in 1996, was featured in Time Magazine and on 60 Minutes. Kenny moved to Israel from Miami, Florida. In his spare time, he is an avid music collector and traveler.
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