Those of you reading this, in say, 2060 or so:
I doubt that the comments section of news sites are reflective of the electorate’s views as a whole. I suspect those who leave comments are more passionate, over-caffeinated, perhaps angrier, and probably quicker to denounce everyone on the other side. They just aren’t like the intelligent, astute, even-tempered charming types who read political blogs.
…let me just stop a few academic papers before they even start.
- Jim Geraghty is being heavily sarcastic. His own site(s) do not feature comments sections, mostly because absent active site moderation they would be rapidly overrun by liberal racists/misogynists/homophobes/bigots looking for a socially acceptable venue to express their racism/misogyny/homophobia/bigotry via projecting said racism/misogyny/homophobia/bigotry on conservatives. Also, it would attract p3nis enlargement spam.
- Very few American males actually do worry overmuch about the size of their p3nises. We have no idea why every other email that the average American gets is spam offering help in correcting this non-problem.
- The ‘3’ above is there to substitute for an ‘e,’ in the futile hope of avoiding more spam.
- Where was I? Oh, yes: on the other hand, your era’s conventional wisdom is correct: the most amazingly useless, pointless, and counterproductive commentary in the world really was to be found on YouTube. The collective intelligence of the blogosphere’s commentariat went up ten IQ points as soon as people noticed that you could comment on that site.
- And, oh, yeah: we just thought RickRolling was funny. There wasn’t any kind of conspiracy. Sorry?