10. Another important rule: You can let one jeering, unpleasant jerk hang around for a while, but the minute you get two or more of them egging each other on, they both have to go, and all their recent messages with them. There are others like them prowling the net, looking for just that kind of situation. More of them will turn up, and they’ll encourage each other to behave more and more outrageously. Kill them quickly and have no regrets.
Deindividuation is what happens when we get behind the wheel of a car and feel moved to scream abuse at the woman in front who is slow in turning right.
You can trace those implications right back to the genesis of social media, to pioneering Californian utopias, and their fall. The earliest network-groups had a sort of Edenic cast. One representative group was CommuniTree, which was set up as an open-access forum on a series of modem-linked computers in the 1970s when computers were just humming into life.
The two experts trace the history of road rage to 19th century England, where "furious driving" laws were passed to control horse drawn carriages barreling through town on Saturday nights after drivers left taverns in a drunken state.
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