Thursday, September 4, 2008

Juice and Bruise

For those of you who haven't noticed, there is a new game in town for college students. Imagine this, an online forum where you can make fun, ridicule, mock, or (in a more positive term) voice your opinion anonymously. Yes, total anonymity and 100% guaranteed privacy. Further, to make sure this policy is being served, the forum even provides software that protects web user's IP address from being tracked. It's slogan: Always Anonymous, Always Juicy

Ring a bell? Yes, I'm referring to Juicy Campus. Now, not only college students can rate their professors, they also have the freedom to throw demeaning racial insults or vicious homophobic comments without any fear of being caught, totally oblivious about the negative psychological and social effects that the subject matter will have to carry. 

Imagine if you are the promiscuous, ugliest or 'nasty whore' whose post ranked no 1 in the 'most discussed' section. Imagine if it is your name that is listed on a discussion about the 'most disgusting person in Columbus'. Imagine what your reaction would be when there is a post about you having a Sexually Transmitted Disease. 

Now, it's my turn to voice my opinion freely. This is a major misinterpretation and degradation of The First Amendment: the freedom of speech. I believe what the founding fathers had in mind was not about the freedom to express your hatred to a girl who dumped you, nor it was as trivial as so-and-so has the smallest or the biggest dick. It is about the freedom to voice a sounded grievance and annoyance to the government without fear of being persecuted or imprisoned. It is a practical form of democracy.

Then, when the meaning is diluted, this is exactly what happens: an irreverent generation who does not respect what it took to get them the freedom and a coward generation who hide behind the mask of anonymity. Irreverent because the once national-matter issues are now downgraded to featherweight issues. Coward because it teaches college students that consequences can be avoided or even discounted; the whole idea of responsibility is reduced to insignificant. It also gives the impression that someone's reputation is secondary compared to the rights to speak; The rights is absolute and irrevocable, social harmony and people's feeling can be taken care later. 

I'm not saying that the concept of juicy campus is totally bad since there are quite a number of informative posts, but the fact that libelous comment is the most viewed and discussed post creates the problem. It is defamatory. Also, the main purpose of the forum is not to share information but purely to gossip, "C'mon, give me the juice". And to ensure the juiciest gossip is posted, no moderator exists. This is a heaven for gossipers. It's free, anonymous and uncensored. How better could you get? 

Any comment or opinion? 

3 comments:

Andika said...

yeah, I checked that website just recently; I'd say its full of craps in comparison to the weightier things that needs to be discussed concerning the campus.

I appreciate your comment and insights on this development, man...good stuff.

Joe said...

Good insight, Cong. Jarang2 ada teman2 Indo yang cukup kritis terhadap perkembangan budaya dan teknologi other than as a user. Gue suka analisa elu yang cukup kritis tapi juga membangun dan menawarkan alternatif!

apache said...

It is important to voice our opinion like you did in this blog :)

I think people are very fearful of the society consequences, if their names are traceable. I bet the site will not be as "Juicy", if the anonymity is taken out :)

Good stuff bro!!