“So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed”


In the British Psychological Society’s The Psychologist, John Sutton reviews Jon Ronson’s new book, So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed, which explores the rising power of social media to reinforce social norms.

Sutton writes: “I am convinced that Ronson is spot on when he says that social media is ‘a stage for constant artificial high dramas. Every day a new person emerges as a magnificent hero or a sickening villain.’ We define the boundaries of normality ‘by tearing apart the people outside of it.’ And the idea that this is an exciting new democracy is illusory: as documentary maker Adam Curtis tells his friend Ronson, feedback loops are turning social media into ‘a giant echo chamber where what we believe is constantly reinforced by people who believe the same thing.’”

Powerful, crazy, cruel
(The Psychologist, April 2015)


  1. The Price of Shame, Monica Lewinski

    “Public shaming as a blood sport has to stop,” says Monica Lewinsky. In 1998, she says, “I was Patient Zero of losing a personal reputation on a global scale almost instantaneously.” Today, the kind of online public shaming she went through has become constant — and can turn deadly. In a brave talk, she takes a hard look at our online culture of humiliation, and asks for a different way.


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