Why I Rarely Share My Personal Opinion Online

Here’s an unpopular truth: most of the biggest issues in the world today are not clear-cut or simple. The world is complex and most of today’s divisive issues include at least some degree of nuance, ambiguity, uncertainty. I believe that most intelligent, thoughtful, good people understand this to be true.

Most online platforms are not conducive to nuance, ambiguity, and uncertainty. Even those that are (like a blog), leave open the door to having your nuanced opinion broken down into inflammatory hot takes, those hot takes republished on social media, and a world of criticism then leveled at you due the oversimplification of your nuanced position.

The way the internet works today, it’s really good at building echo chambers filled with likeminded people. And the complex issues of the day aren’t done justice in digital echo chambers.

In the virtual world, we’re often singing to the choir. This leads us to pull out the straw-man and go wild. In the physical world, we’re usually (though not always) confronted with more diversity of opinion and this causes straw-manning to be harder to get away with, and we end up having to admit our uncertainties and doubts. Opinion couched in uncertainty leaves room for discussion.

All of this leads me to conclude that sharing opinions online, where most of our conversations happen in like-minded communities mired in groupthink and virtue signaling, is usually a bad idea. It’s not very productive, doesn’t encourage deep thought, and often leads to fruitless arguments and a lot of stress. On the other hand, talking it out in real life with thoughtful, intelligent, good people is usually a much better and more productive idea.

2 thoughts on “Why I Rarely Share My Personal Opinion Online”

  1. Man what a topic! On a personal level I just don’t have time for arguing online anymore. However there are people who are able to use it and still feel somewhat productive, its just not for me.

    • Absolutely. Arguing is also just really really draining for me personally, so I pick my arguments carefully – I just don’t have the emotional energy to argue about everything!

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