- Posted October 24, 2008 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Stories from Second Life
Virtually Very Angry
In real life you have to deal with all sorts of emotions, joy, sadness, love and anger. CNN have asked the members in their Second Life group of ireporters to tell them about how people deal with anger in the virtual world and what makes them angry.
Well, real life is stressful enough, as most people know, and sometimes anger is a hard emotion to cope with. I have seen people angry in Second Life when personalities clash and they argue, resulting to name calling and even using the limited power of SL weapons to pay their enemy back. This of course only angers the other person on the receiving end of the weapons, and they usually retaliate with a counter attack. Nothing is resolved this way, as it usually results in one or both parties being banned from SL, either for a short period the first time, or ultimately a lifetime ban if they keep on. Some people appear to rub each other up the wrong way from the first meeting, not surprising really, with so many different cultures and the diversity of people from all over the world, finding themselves face to face in SL with someone with entirely different values to their own.
I have seen jealous people in the virtual world who feel unfairly treated because other people appear to be having a better SL existence than they do. Perhaps the person they are jealous of is better at some skill they wish they could turn their hand to, or they imagine that they are more gifted and resent that person for achieving the success which they think should be theirs. Very similar to real life if you think about it! People who have these jealous tendencies seem to harbour a real hatred for the successful person, and just like real life they must be pretty eaten up inside, which is self damaging in the long run.
The trouble with SL is the fact that you can create this fantastic persona, where you can show off to everyone, impressing them with your knowledge and wisdom, offering advice and sounding very clever, but without having any substance to back it up. I suppose these type of people do annoy me, I won't go as far as to say they make me angry, as I am not the sort of person to blow my top. However, I do get annoyed with these bores and to put it mildly, I do not suffer fools gladly.
Don't get me wrong, I have no problem with people living out their fantasies in SL, it's a release from real life for a lot of people, and if they have fun being something else, then that's fine. However, the people I am talking about wish to involve others, giving out tasks and expecting other people to run rings round them, while they sit back and do nothing. I usually take so much, but my reaction is to confront people if I estimate that they are overstepping the mark. I have a wry sense of humour, and I am guilty of being sarcastic in some of these situations, although sometimes my sarcasm is lost with such big egos to confront. I feel it is better than saying nothing though, as I am entitled to my opinion just as they are entitled to tell me if they object to my behaviour.
One thing I suppose I do hate is injustice and people being bullied, and I will intervene if I can. I heard a phrase the other day which said ‘power over truth' and to me this sums up a lot of injustice, it means that if people hold the power they can tell lies and be believed, therefore wielding the sword to the expense of the people who are telling the truth. As politics appears to be finding its way more and more into the virtual world, I suppose I may find this a good reason to get angry, I hope I won't let it spoil my SL experience, but only time will tell.
To sum it up, I cope with anger in SL by giving it a lot of thought, and working out how I got to that stage in the first place. Perhaps I have riled the other person because of a culture difference, perhaps that other person attacked me simply because they do not like me for one reason or another. They say revenge is best served cold, and I find this very true, I hardly ever retaliate out of a flash of temper, I apply logic to find the weakness in another persons argument if I can, and then I construct my answer, which nine times out of ten will appease my anger.
Of course, there are times when I am totally wrong, or I have insulted someone else without being aware that I have done so. I have my failings of which I am aware and I will always apologies if I am wrong. However, if I feel that I am being attacked without good reason beware.......