the bike story and public humiliation
I got home a bit late last night and turned on the computer - that sophisticated device that I used to research things like: "whatever happened to Marla Maples?".
But last night, I caught up with a story that initially grabbed my attention on boingboing a coupla days ago. A local story about an off-duty bike courier in Toronto's Kensington Market who got in a scuffle with a motorist after she tossed a piece of garbage he had littered back into his car.
The Toronto Star did not report on the incident, per se, but they did report on the reactions to these photos from the source, citynoise.
Ah, the interweb, where people feel free to post vile garbage they would never have the nerve to say in person. And we can't throw it back in their windows. The comments go on and on and on. People offering their expert opinion on an incident they never witnessed. Their opinions on drivers, on courriers on men (who "should never hit a chick!"), on women (who they want to celebrate, fuck, or malign based on gender).
A lot of people questioned why the cyclist didn't press charges against the driver who, in the photos at least, looks like a rage filled lunatic.
I ran into Liz on the streetcar today, and we were talking about this incident. We both agreed that with the proliferation of camera phones and self-publishing tools on the web, there is no anonymity anymore, even in a big city.
See globe article
I anticipate that this could provide a serious deterrent to potential boneheads who want to impose their boneheaded-ness on the rest of us.
It could even cut down on the caseload for courts and police officers. People will know: Behave like an ass and it will be documented in a very public, humilating manner. Perhaps that is punishment enough?