Seeing Green

I simply have to address the issue of the green Twitter icons before my head simply explodes.

For those of you stuck in a cave, Twitter users started to tint their icons/avatars green to show their solidarity with the Iranian people and their situation. Noble. Maybe. Senseless. Definitely.

It would be like those “I support the troops” ribbons you might own. When asked what folks actually did to support the troops the classic response was that they simply bought the ribbon. You didn’t support the troops by buying the ribbon you supported the person who “sold” it to you and you get to feel good about yourself in the process.

That’s a liberal trait. Doing something just because it feels good. What does that accomplish in the grand scheme of things? Well, YOU feel good. That’s about it. Liberals need to feel good because they are just so damn miserable anyway.

We’d all like to think that the social networks we belong to are shared and used by everyone. Truth is. They aren’t. If you turn your icon green on Twitter, who is going to notice? Other users on Twitter? It might get reported on the news. So what?

Because the Twitter users got Twitter to change their maintenance time all of the sudden we’ve tried to spread this “amazing new ability” to other things. Now we think we can change reality outside of Twitter and obviously we can’t. Changing things “inside” of a network is just that. It’s inside the network.

If a tree falls in the woods, does anyone hear it?

Has the fact that you’ve changed your icon amounted to anything? Has it knocked out a terrorist training camp or freed anyone or prevented a student protester from being shot or sent in radios? How many “real” Iranians have Twitter? How many have the internet for that matter?

Back in the 1960s when people wanted to raise awareness they took to the streets, burned flags, burned bras, held sit-ins, etc.

At least they did something more tangible than simply turning their picture into a nice shade of puke green. The scary part of this sad story is not so much the green icons as much as it shows how willing people are to blindly follow what someone else does.

That should scare everybody.