Jon Ronson has his finger on the pulse. He knows what’s up, he knows what worries us because chances are he’s just as worried as you. Maybe even more so. Everything is on the internet. Everyone is on the internet. Everything about everyone is on the internet. Every time you place an opinion on the internet, you are exposing yourself and there is no turning back. Ronson’s latest book looks into the world of public shaming.
Ye old public shaming was the congregation of people to watch exciting events such as hangings and throwing rotten fruit. It fell out of fashion for a while until the internet enabled anonymity. You can name and shame in large numbers without consequences, from spelling mistakes to tasteless jokes. There are no consequences for the shamer, but there is for the shamee.
I had a vague recollection of many of the people that feature in Ronson’s books but they had fallen out of the news as quickly as they came, naturally not many people have given them a second thought. There had been devastating ramifications; people have lost jobs. He approaches this with the same humour as the rest of his books as well as making you think and a little bit scared. Most importantly, he makes these people human again.