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Online social shaming lowers society's moral IQ

July 31, 2015
CTV National News
Author: 
Jennifer Burke
Article Source: Read the Original Article

RRU Professor David Black spoke to CTV Vancouver Island and CTV National News in the last few days regarding the public online shaming of a wild game trophy hunter Walter Palmer.

Black says shaming is a powerful social tool for regulating human behaviour. However, online shaming depersonalizes the individual singled out for the moral correction and doesn't always change their behaviour. He says it often confirms the law of unintended consequences as well, as the shaming ultimately reflects worse on the people doing the shaming than those who caused the orignal offense. He adds this and other issues with online shaming have the overall effect of lowering society's moral IQ. 

Watch the CTV National News interview here.