A self-destructive enterprise

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With the rise of Facebook, does anyone care about the Oxford gossip forum? But the Oxford gossip forum is not the same as Facebook, nor is it the same as your average gossip column, and we would be foolish to treat them the same way.

The aim of the Oxford gossip forum is to talk about other students. People log onto the website in the hope of discovering something they are not supposed to know; in hope of acquiring that precious piece of information about a rival or someone they just don’t like. Facebook activity can be innocent, but those accessing the Oxford gossip forum always have some kind of ulterior motive. Gossip is often harmful, and while it is amusing for those on the outside, it can cause substantial emotional damage to those involved.

Gossip of this kind ruins relationships and destroys friendships. For what? So that a few people can perpetuate their meaningless existence by reading about someone else’s sex life? There are people who don’t care and those who crave the publicity, but the gossip forum does not discriminate between them and those who want to be left alone.

The forum was closed down last time amid allegations of slander and harassment, and it will again become a place to attack those who neither want nor deserve an intrusion into their private lives.

One would assume that the Lewis Iwu would be concerned about something like this, but he merely declared it useful to “help people know what is going on in Oxford.”

We wonder if he’ll still be echoing that phrase when the inevitable misogyny and harassment emerge once more.

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