Internet abuse finds another victim

Stories of vile behaviour on the internet are never great reading. This story about abuse received by Zelda Williams, daughter of Robin Williams just seems vile.

The anonymity of the internet cuts both ways. People can be open and honest in constructive ways. They can also be vile in ways that wouldn't be tolerated in the public square in real life.

The immediacy of services like Twitter doesn't help. In a moderated forum posts can be removed and effects of unpleasant behaviour lessened. Twitter notifications can cause immediate distress and furthermore the distress caused is asymmetric with the ease of sending messages.

I don't agree with the jailing of people for offensive comments as is happening in Britain, but it's getting to the point where there must be a better option than just quitting these services. Sadly this won't be resolved any time soon.