Public discourse and the online mob

From the Smart Set: “Public discourse is threatened less by a resurgence of 1990s-style political correctness than by Internet-enabled anonymity. Wearing a mask tends to liberate repressed impulses; that was the whole point of Venetian costume ball masks and the white robes and hoods of the Ku Klux Klan. Allowed to hide their identities, progressives, conservatives, and centrists alike are liable to abandon self-restraint and hoot and shriek from the safety of anonymity in an online mob. Anonymity turns the Internet into the Id Net.”

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