I have always thought about the shift in our culture that social media has created. There is a certain aspect that has changed dramatically however I was never able to quite define it in words. In the article On Smarm by Tom Scocca this behavior is described accurately. Scocca describes this behavior with the word ‘smarm’ an old term used for when one would smear grease over their hair to make it look better. Social media has allowed anyone with access to the internet to create a fabrication of themselves. The information on social media profiles is often half true and some individuals may create grandiose versions of themselves. It is human nature to want to triumph over others. The internet allows people to hide and create a safe wall between themselves and the real world.
Scocca describes this new found attitude to be cynical and negative. This behavior is projecting negative feelings about others and the world. It would seem the ability to find out a wealth of information about someone, even if one has never met the individual may help to form negative attitudes towards them. This new ability to find endless information about anything has helped create a cynical attitude in the participants.
This generation has also become more self-centered and Scocca uses the word ‘snark’ to describe activities such as internet trolling. Leaving rude comments online or poking fun of something serious that has happened could be described as a form of ‘snark.’ A false sense of reality is created on the internet and anyone can say anything without having their identity attached. This rudeness and negativity often overflows into the real world creating a new cultural phenomenon.