Are we really a world of bitter and bigoted haters?

Nicola Adam, Group Editor
Nicola Adam, Group Editor
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I hate to be so glum on this summery week, but I am feeling quite worn down by the haters of the world, creeping out from under their rocks in a bid to make other people miserable or to dilute their sunshine.

This week was an all time low for the human race - when a desperate young lady threatened to throw herself off a building for the second time in 24 hours - onlookers urged her to jump. Worse - in front of her mother.

But there is no doubt it is social media which brings out the very worst in people, with intolerant, nasty, unnecessary opinions being regularly aired - the type of comments which would never have made the light of day pre internet - and would certainly never be expressed face-to-face.

The frightening thing is people often do not mean these nasty things, instead making smart comments at someone’s else’s expense in a bid for approbation or approval, a sort of online act of desperation to gain popularity or attention.

Those already with a high public profile are generally the biggest victims of this online abuse - their public profiles seemingly offering immunity for hatred, as if they are not human too.

This week Team GB’s Olympic silver-medal gymnast Louis Smith was hammered for not looking 100 per cent joyful at relinquishing an Olympic gold he has worked for relentlessly for the past four years to his teammate.

As he battled with tears, overwhelmed by mixed emotions, he was vilified for not looking happier for his teammate who he had just congratulated.

Meanwhile, over on Instagram, flawed teen sensation Justin Beiber quit the social media platform - abandoning a staggering 78 million followers -because the foul abuse directed toward his young girlfriend became intolerable.

It is safe to say, as journalists, we know which online stories will attract the worst of society .

Opinions are welcomed, but malice and intolerance are not - we are often forced to close to comments when bigotry rears its head.

At the end of the day a kind word costs nothing at all.

And the sun is shining.