Packaged Outrage

I remember watching the bottling process in a factory that manufactured bleach.
One tube fed the bleach to the branded bottle and another tube redirected bleach to some or other store’s “House brand.”
Same Bleach, different branding.
When I look at the news and the puerile regurgitated issues on Twitter I see the same thing.
We’re living in the age of bottled and packaged outrage.
It feels like all the “issues” are flowing into one homogenous tube.
Real social issues get sidelined in favour of popular gossip and banal videos that often only serve to illustrate stupidity and human failings.

Ok, so despite appeals to the better nature angels of someone’s nature a “package” gets released.
What then?
Many of these “viral outrage videos” get lost in a torrid cesspool of comments.
Generalization rules supreme—I seldom see comments that inquire instead of merely following the herd.
Make no mistake though, the herd breaks the internet, destroys lives and spawns a thousand memes…
At times creating a secondary outrage that often outshines the original.
But only until the next “Outrage package” is taken from the shelf.
Then in a flash we experience that Groundhog Day feeling again.
Honestly, I struggle to keep track of all the outrage I observe on a daily basis!

Outrage has become ubiquitous, especially in the online world.
And we appear to be struggling to comprehend which ones are cleverly engineered for maximum impact, and which ones should really warrant any attention.
Naturally there are exposes that definitely need to see the light.
And many social media campaigns have actually succeeded in bringing atrocities to light, and thereby putting an end to them.

Unfortunately its a personal desire to be relevant that fuels a lot of posts…
Have you ever noticed how the original poster’s caption has a way of swaying the adudience to veer off into a set direction.
Often a photo or video will result in creating an emotion, but because we’re lazy we latch onto the “packaged message” within the caption, instead of filtering the content through our own set of values and logical constructs.

I wonder if these outrage-mongers are ever concerned about destroying the real brand.
That “brand” which incorporates “being human” as vital ingredient.
Being human, exhibiting some logical restraint— And not merely acting upon the way the product is presented, but being truly concerned about the real implications of the content.
Instead the world often lauds the salesman who gets the most views—Turning him into a celebrity!
At the expense of real tragedy that eventually finds its way to the same shelf where sensation is diligently stored.