Do You Think There is Peer Pressure on MyLot?

@debrakcarey (19925)
United States
March 20, 2011 12:26pm CST
Everybody has heard of peer pressure, but most people argue that they are not affected by it, or at least not affected as 'most people.' The truth is, we are all affected by the people we interact with, many of whom we don't even know personally. Our social environments play a significant role in how we view ourselves, and conversely, how we see ourselves impacts our view of the world. I have been thinking of how I could have handled certain interactions here on MyLot better. I have asked myself some hard questions. Why do people react the way they do when they are disagreed with? Do I react badly when I am disagreed with? Do cliques exist on MyLot and if they do, am I participating in them or am I the outsider? I understand that we all tend to gravitate to those who agree with us. We seek ego reinforcement from our peers. This is not necessarily a bad thing. But do we then develope a negative and harsh attitude with those who don't agree? Is it possible to really get along, to not go along with the harshness and sometimes mean spirited exchange? Then we have to consider the possibility that we are misunderstanding or we are perceiving someone differently than they really are due to the nature of online communication, the impersonal and annonymous factor. So,what's your take on this. I'm interested to know if my observations are the same as others.
8 people like this
19 responses
• Philippines
20 Mar 11
Hello Debrakcacey, I am a filipino, but unfortunately, I can be sensitive as the rest of my people most of the time. in other forums, such debates turns into insults and down right hate. so, in most of the times, i tried to just ignore it and be neutral from one issue to the true. THE ONLY EVENT THAT I WAS TRUE TO MYSELF WAS WAY BACK 2010 ELECTIONS. I fought for my belief and lost my blue star, which took months for it to come back.. sometimes, i prefer to have a good community rather than seeing the harshness of conversations existing here, i don't like having enemies in mylot.
2 people like this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Do you think the star rating system is misused. By this I mean, not used objecively as intended, but rather as a sort of 'punishment' for not agreeing with the majority on the discussion or original poster's views?
1 person likes this
@badwes (408)
• United States
20 Mar 11
if i may answer that , i say yes , i guess that most of the myloters are not so honest when it comes yo the rating system ,, also i think that is soemthign that you can't control
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
thank you badwes. And I hope that doesn't stop you from being an active member on here.
1 person likes this
@ptower76 (1619)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Mylot to me is another environment with many different people. It is the same as any other discussion forum either virtual or not. My experiences in life have taught me to stay away from certain topics and so I do that wherever I go here or there. I will be myself regardless of what others say or how they rate my discussions. If my ratings are taken away because of someone's vindictiveness, well I hope they feel better for it. Meantime, I will continue discussing those topics I enjoy and avoiding those I determine I should. I personally believe that true friends should agree to disagree and only by seeing all sides of an issue even if they contradict our side, can we truly reach the truth. I believe there are cliques on mylot and as I said before, more power to all.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
I've always enjoyed hearing and learning all opinions on a given subject. I am told I am opinionated at times though. I see myself as growing and evolving in my opinions the more I learn from others as well as holding strong opinions that would not change. All in all, I try to see it from all sides. I don't really care about the star rating, other than realizing that some may view my lower rating as an indication I might need to be avoided or not trusted. I caught myself thinking of someone who had a low rating negatively and had to apologize, so I know it's possible that people do judge by others by their star rating. How could we change this, should MyLot do away with the rating system? I agree with you and applaude your idea that people can be friends and be civil even if they strongly disagree. I still haven't learned to not let others push my buttons. At least not in discussions I feel strongly about.
2 people like this
@ptower76 (1619)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Your words will speak for themselves and so someone that prejudges because of high ratings or such will be ignoring the real you. Discussions one feels strongly about should have their proper forum so that everyone's opinions can be considered and respected. In a forum like this, I take the QTIP approach. Quit Taking It Personally. You'll be ok.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Good advice, I'll try to follow it. I've been accused of being an emotional woman more than once though. Not that that is always a bad thing.
1 person likes this
@spalladino (17929)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I've been participating in online discussion forums for probably 15 years now and they are what they are...discussion forums. Yes, friendships are made but for the most part they consist of the non-personal exchange of ideas and opinions. I'd have to say that no online forum has had an impact on how I view myself but they have, from time to time, impacted how I view certain situations. And, ***YES***, cliques exist on mylot! I am definitely in the minority on the political board in many areas of thought and opinion. Back before the election, after I had voted for Romney and then swung my support behind McCain when he won the Primary, I wasn't considered the Devil wearing Prada because I'm a Republican and was acceptable to the conservative majority. When I started to express genuine concerns about Palin I suddenly became a target by a select group. I was no longer a Republican...I was a RINO...I was a liberal...I supported the destruction of this country...yaddda...yadda. As you've seen though, I don't tend to gravitate towards those who agree with me on that board because I don't now, nor have I ever, needed my ego to be reinforced by faceless strangers on the internet. I have opinions and knowledge that I put out there if the topic interests me, usually backed up with facts, and am more than happy to have a civil discussion. Some of the more reasonable and rational members here will agree that I have changed my opinion a time or two and that I have agreed that certain parts of another poster's argument are right even though I disagree with other parts. That's the nature of discussion forums. If everyone agreed with everyone else on all matters, how dull would that be?
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Believe it or not spalladino, I look forward to disagreeing with you. You've challenged me a few times to reconsider and that is a good thing. I can be opinionate myself when I feel strongly about something. I've caught myself becoming way to wrapped up in a topic, needing to step back and look at it from a different angle. Thats what I like about this site, you are exposed to more than just those who agree with you and you're opinions.
@spalladino (17929)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Some areas of this site do challange you, I agree....and other areas can be very supportive and fun. There are times when I wish I had more time to hang out here. The members of mylot as a whole are great people. A few years ago one of my dogs came down with Parvo and the vet gave me the option of treating her at home but didn't hold out much hope for her. She and I fought for her survival for 5 days and nights. I started a discussion about our battle and, during those long hours of caring for her with little to no sleep, I found a great deal of support, advice and encouragement here. So many people waited for my updates and they helped me as much as my family and close friends did. I used to be able to do the same for othes in return but life got in the way of my mylotting.
• United States
21 Mar 11
There are cliques here, and as someone mentioned above, if you disagree with anyone in the clique, you will be attacked by the rest of the group. Sometimes when you have commented and in no way are trying to be negative, one of the clique will jump down your throat, because they interpreted what you have written in the wrong way. I think it is really silly. But from reading so many discussions, I believe some of the oldies are personal and friends other than just on mylot, and they feel the need to help the group out. Yes, I have also experienced my star being reduced for this reason, and no matter how I try, I haven't been able to get it back up. I think it is sad that others being vidictive want to affect your earnings also. I wish it weren't allowed.
• United States
21 Mar 11
excuse me: vindictive
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Some days I just give it right back to them, other days I get weary of it. I've also realized that there are groups of close personal friends on here. But that really does't bother me as I have close personal friends on here as well. I just try my best to be true to myself and yet have some dignity when dealing with jerks...wish it didn't have to be that way. but it is. It really is sad, here we have this forum that allows us to speak to a host of people whom may be able to teach us a great deal. And it is used for a playground of egos. I hope to see more of you if I have any discussions that interest you.
• United States
20 Mar 11
I think it is very obvious that there are cliques here on myLot. One has only to read some of the discussion posted by self proclaimed clique leaders. The slew of that OP's clique members who rush to support his/her views with slavish devotion. They immediately attack with insults anyone who dares to respond with an opinion not to their, or the clique bosses, liking. I am quite happy to have been subject of these attacks because it make me realize that they must be afraid of the truth of some of my postings when they attack with personal insults.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
I thank you for the validation. I thought I was becoming paranoid. I like your attitude about it all, and will try to emulate it.
1 person likes this
@praty77 (63)
• India
20 Mar 11
Wow ! Wonderful discussion debra ! I must say, everyone's different. lets compare this to a classroom of people whom you are meeting for the first time. Everyone's different and everyone has their own view of things. We just can't be of the opinion that everyone thinks the way we do. I personally feel that if we let everyone be their own self and not matter much over other's thoughts then we'll live a happy life and maybe even escape the 'peer pressure'. When someone acts unexpected, I just think to myself that its their life, their freedom, why should I interfere... Have a wonderful day !
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Why thank you very much praty77. Yes, we must realize that not everyone will agree with us. What do you think, though about issues that are important and critical, should we refrain, as you suggest, from attempting to change peoples minds on them? Is it improper to feel that your opinion is the correct one and others as not being correct? Is there really no right or wrong answers, only shades of gray opinion? Keep in mind, I do believe everyone has the right to their opinions. But true debate demands taking a side and defending it, doesn't it?
2 people like this
@cream97 (29178)
• United States
20 Mar 11
Hi. debrakcarey. I know that I don't feel pressured to be what others want me to be. Nor do I feel any kind of pressure when it comes to being on myLot, period. I am fine with just being me. I do believe that there are certain cliques that are on myLot. But it does not phase me. I carry on as if there is nothing going on right now. I always be who I am, I don't try to change to fit in with certain cliques or groups. I will state my opinion and I am not too concerned with how someone feels. I will tell the person the truth but I will be honest and respectable at the same time too.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
20 Mar 11
That is commendable cream97. Which interests do you frequent? Do you avoid interests that generate strong opinions or do you avoid expessing an opinon on difficult topics because of controversy? It is interesting to me what motivates people in cliques or groups. I know that I at times have felt pressured by peers and admire those who have the high self esteem not to be swayed. One aspect of this is when some feel smug because theirs is the dominate opinion and that leads them to believe that because they are the majority, all other views can be insulted.
2 people like this
@suspenseful (40330)
• Canada
21 Mar 11
There is peer pressure here. I was on a discussion where my views were opposite of what the poster and all the others were. And there was an attempt to get me to completely agree with them. I kind of got the idea that they all ganged up on me eveb though I let them know the reason why I disagreed with them. When someone does not agree with me, I may expand a little bit, but I certainly do not force them to agree with me. Oh I am a definite outsider.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
oh sweetie, I am so sorry you feel that way. I hope I've not ever done something to contribute to your feeling that way. People tend to get their adrenaline up when discussing politics suspenseful. And the other culprit is religious discussions. That is why some people back away from those two topics. But please don't do that, as these two topics are the most important of all. Politics is how and by whom we are governed, and religion is by whom or how we govern ourselves. That is important an everyone needs to think on those two topics. It's ok that we all don't agree. It is even all ok that we thy to persude another to change their mind. That little process has made us civilized!
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
* try not thy,
1 person likes this
@suspenseful (40330)
• Canada
21 Mar 11
I am bit upset because I learned that one of my best friends who helped take care of my husband when he was dying might have cancer. But what makes me think of peer pressure is that when you are the only one with the same view. If there had been someone with my view I would not have minded, as I like to learn a lot, but they were the same mind as the poster. With politics, I get on some posts and there is the Democrats, the REpublicans, the Obama worshippers, the Bush admirers, and me who is Canadian and does not want to live next to a country that might turn into a dictatorship. I think persuasion can go a certain way, but there has to be a point where you have to stop. Like when you reach an impasse. I understood, my computer keyboard also has a mind of its own.
@dawnald (84109)
• Shingle Springs, California
22 Mar 11
I posted a discussion about something that happened on a chat site. The other person who was involved also posted a discussion about it. Interestingly enough, most of the people who responded to my discussion agreed with my point of view, and most of the ones who responded to hers agreed with her. Make of that what you will.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
23 Mar 11
Kissing up were they? Well, I don't think that helps anyone. I'd rather be disagreed with. Maybe though, it was just a case of like attracts like. I know I respond to subjects that interest me more than to ones I have no opinion on. And I've gotten used to the people who frequent the same interests I have. Missed that one dawn, what's the title? Recently posted? I'll come and disagree with you, ok?
1 person likes this
@dawnald (84109)
• Shingle Springs, California
23 Mar 11
The one about learning about other cultures, and I think maybe you did already respond...
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
23 Mar 11
well, then I can't disagree then can I? sorry
@hora_fugit (5374)
• India
21 Mar 11
I'm quite opinion-less person so I don't know when I get disagreed with. I would like to think my calmness stands still in such situation. Though I did react badly once, not in the sense you mean. I just went self-destructive From my experience lately, I see a peer pressure looming even in quarters known to me. I don't bad-mouth anyone just because I'm supposed to. Better to analyze first. The case I'm referring was unfortunate one, between my friends. I was, however, gagged by my network. Banned from writing anything here (I worked out to be able to read). Could I be able to mediate? I doubt, still I would have liked to be there. All mean to say is a yes to your discussion title and that I'm a third party.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
22 Mar 11
I appreciate you taking the time to respond hora_fugit...what an interesting name. Can I ask the meaning of it? Please don't go self destructive again. Just use your ability to stay calm and perhaps it will teach others by example.
1 person likes this
• India
22 Mar 11
Time flies - that's what I'm told. I am not sure. The person who attacked me was dear to me. I don't expect such treatment from them. Maybe I'll react again if someone close does that. Best part is she doesn't know...
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
23 Mar 11
If you can keep your temper, maybe you should tell her? clear the air, so to speak?
@anniepa (25504)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I think myLot is like a microcosm of "real life" so of course there's peer pressure, or at least I suspect there is. I have a feeling all of us who post regularly in some of the more "controversial" interests feel we're being "bullied" or ganged up on from time to time and we probably suspect that some of those taking part are more "followers" than "leaders". I also believe it's very easy, TOO easy to misunderstand or misinterpret what someone online really means or what kind of person they really are. Plus there's the huge difference between speaking with someone face to face or just writing back and forth; when we're just posting on a forum like myLot others can't hear the inflection in our voices or see our expressions so it's quite easy to mistake something meant to be tongue-in-cheek or satire for insults or condescension. Another thing is sometimes if we're discussing a particular topic we may tend to forget there is a lot more to all of us than our views on that topic. We come from many different backgrounds here so it's natural our world views would vary greatly but that doesn't mean we don't have more in common than we have differences. I know I'm always trying to be a better person and to not take things personally if I'm disagreed with. I'm far from perfect but I always TRY to keep it respectful and to add a little humor and lightness now and then! Annie
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I've been guilty of using sarcasim way to much. Do you ever get a 'feeling' about people? You know, when you've read a lot of their responses and you just feel that they are not a happy, friendly person? I guess that can be dangerous to do, go with a feeling like that. Cause as you point out, we can't see them or hear their voices. But then I get positive feelings from some as well. I'm going to make a conscious effort to just assume everyone has the best intentions from here on out. If they don't, their loss.
1 person likes this
@spalladino (17929)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I think it's difficult to get an accurate feeling about a person if you're only exposed to their contributions in one or two topics. For instance, I'm not nearly as harsh as I come across on the political board. Back when I had more time I posted on many of the other boards and my *tone* was definitely different on the other boards...perhaps because talking about things like family, pets, diets, etc. are not such intense subjects.
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
That is true, politics is intense. I think it is because as humans we instictively don't like be 'ruled over' and each of us to one degree or another resents it when our 'rulers' don't do what is right. I've been frustrated at you and I'm sure I've frustrated the h*ll out of you at times. But I've always respected your knowledge and tact. Even good friends can get that way at times with one another. I've had situations with my best friend where we almost came to blows... But all in all, spalladino, I've never seen you actually be mean to anyone.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Mar 11
Hi Debra, I've only been a member here for a short while, but I've already been affected to a certain degree by peer pressure here. I'm by no means saying that everyone here, or indeed people in general have to agree with everything I say, but on at least two occasions, I have felt attacked on mylot for my opinions. One of these happened just today. Also, I had wanted to post a bit about my life here, but now I feel unsure about doing it due to some responses that made me feel uncomfortable.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Yes,I remember you from a discussion and traskr responded to you. I truly think that was just male lack of sensitivity. I've learned to have pretty thick skin when it comes to talking to some men, they can be the best of people but often come across as insensitive. I've had the same sort of experience on here recently. I'm sorry he made you feel unwelcome. He's pretty intense about his views. Just shoot right back the answer to his question and move on. I know it is hard for someone who is used to it being one way to deal with it being the way it is. Are you used to online discussions? or are you brand new to them?
• United States
21 Mar 11
I'm not brand-new to online discussions, but this is the first time I've experienced feeling uncomfortable to this degree. I hope that makes sense, sometimes I know what I want to say, but not how to articulate it well
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I know what you mean, then you add that its the written word and not spoken, with the attending facial expressions and body language that helps us sort out peoples motives. It makes it difficult sometimes to discern intent. I've judged it wrong at times and had to apologize. Don't let it make you back off from participating. Go where you feel comfortable and test the waters. I'm learning who to trust and be open with and who to stay away from. You'll get it too I look at it this way, when you back off...you've lost an experience to learn and grow. Don't let them do that to you.
@mysdianait (64019)
• Italy
21 Mar 11
There may well be 'cliques' on here but isn't that the same as offline too? Don't some people want to be part of the 'in' crowd at some point in their lives, online or off? I observe some who are always with certain users here and agree with them no matter what and that is their choice. I also notice the others who just 'do their own thing' and seem to getting the best out of myLot. It should be fun here and that is the only way of allowing fun to happen IMO.
@mysdianait (64019)
• Italy
21 Mar 11
POh indeed I do hold myself responsable for my corner of it and that is why I do what I do and I am wary of who I do it with I agree that all the negatives that cliques can create are an absolute no-no and I could never be part of it. I have been on the wrong end of it, as many are aware here too, but I continued to look after my corner and pulled through it I have friends here that appear to be part of a myLot clique. That doesn't mean that I have to be part of it too in the same way that some of my friends have the opposite opinion on some topics to mine. We are friends because I admire how they stand up for their opinions - but some have the idea that friends should think alike too. Life is complicated as it is without us making it even more so
@jb78000 (15178)
21 Mar 11
yep. cliques form in any situation where a large group of unrelated people come together on a regular basis. work, school, online forums. having a group of 'friends' is fine. how much you let yourself be influenced by them is kind of up to you. i can see a couple of people in this discussion who i doubt are overly influenced by anybody, although they take on board and think about other ideas. i think it is about confidence.
@mysdianait (64019)
• Italy
21 Mar 11
'Confidence'! That was the word that I was hoping would appear in this topic somewhere
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Now that is very true. Confidence is very important. Some days I just don't have the energy to have confidence! you are absolutely correct and I've kinda picked that same suggestion from other posters using different wording.
21 Mar 11
I think that we have all experianced this as some point on many forums more often then not i find its the long time users that can object but ifeel that they become fustrated when many people dont read the terms of sites and post things that will end up deleted and these people that put us right are trying to help site by keeping to terms we must also remember that all people have a opinion and a right to express it
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
yeah, I've been guilty of not keeping to the terms, not deliberately though. And my friends try to keep me in line. Wouldn't it be nice if those who've been here a long time would do so without the meanness? I mean, not everyone can be perfect all the time, right? I do understand being frustrated. I've been guilty of that too. Trying to do better. I'm a hothead, when someone is rude, it gets to me and I often do not do well being patient with them. All we can do is try, I guess. Because you are right, everyone has a right to express their opinions. And everyone has a right to disagree with them. Just wish we could all play nice.
1 person likes this
@GardenGerty (82318)
• Marion, Kansas
21 Mar 11
I do not know that I would call it peer pressure, but I do know there are cliques. I think we all find a certain circle that we are comfortable interacting with. I try to broaden my experience, deliberately, but if others do not that is all right. MyLot is recreation, we need to be able to relax while we discuss things and have fun when we visit here. Some people can be a negative influence on the Lot, even without a peer group. I have a friend from another site who was trying to get back in here as she has been a member for four years without ever reaching payout. She developed a routine here, and one other user came and criticized what she was doing, and basically turned her off to the site. I told her that user always puts every one down, and that there was nothing wrong with the posts she made, but she just does not feel comfortable and accepted on MyLot. So yes, we have cliques and peer pressure.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I suppose that every facet of life has cliques and peer pressure. And we do have to find our 'comfort zone' within the whole scheme of things, online or offline. I am attempting to find mine still. (I was absent for a year, then returned) Like you I try to broaden my experience, widen my view a bit. Thats the whole point of discussing things isn't it? Why be nasty about things when it is so much nicer to be pleasant? But this discussion has helped me figure out some of what is going on, and that will make it easier to know how to deal with the 'personalities'. Thanks gardengert.
@flookie (31)
• Philippines
21 Mar 11
Everybody is entitled to have their own perception on things. On one matter you might agree but on 10 others you won't. Respecting other's opinion or views is very important. You can't ask everybody to agree with all your opinions. That will never happen. And I guess peer pressure has always an effect to a person but it depends on yourself if you want to absorb it or not.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
I'd hate it if everyone agreed with me! What a creepy world that would be. And yes, very true...it depends on ourselves if we allow the negative to be absorbed.
@tkonlinevn (5786)
• Vietnam
21 Mar 11
I think that you're right. I'm here. And I usually think how to gravitate others. And I feel happy when I can see very many response below my discussions. If I can't see them, I fee sad and bored. So, I sometimes feel pressures when I write discussions.
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
It is difficult to decide which discussion topics should be posted. I have lists of them. When I read something interesting or hear of something that I find upsetting or intriguing, I file it away and usually post only those I think will get a good number of responses. Btw...ever have a discussion with NO RESPONSE? How does that make you feel?
@shaggin (23213)
• United States
21 Mar 11
In life I do sometimes feel peer pressure but I dont usually let it bother me. I'm pretty strong in how I feel and the way I am so I dont give into the way others expect me to be. Bullying me isnt going to make me change the way I think or act. I think there are a few people on mylot that I have come across who get really nasty if you dont agree with what they think but oh well I'm not going to let them bother me. I love mylot and all these people who think being nasty is going to change someones opinion and force them to see things their way are wrong. I dont know any of these people personally why would I let it effect me in real life. You shouldnt feel peer pressure here if you do just ignore the people who are bothering you and enjoy mylot :)
@debrakcarey (19925)
• United States
21 Mar 11
Do you ever feel the need to confront the bullies? I love the site as well. I have good friends here. I am glad for all the input and appreciate you taking the time to help.