How to Argue Politically Online

How to Argue Politically Online

We love our twitter/facebook arguments. It’s so great to own someone online right before you head off to work. But what if I told you there was a better way, sometimes you should just… not do what you were going to, and instead either stop arguing or conduct yourself a little better. Here are some small tips to help improve your argument etiquette\

Right before I get into this I would like to stress that this is directed at no specific group, and while I have left-leaning politics, I have tried to prevent it from being partisan and instead something all sides of any argument can use.

The Do’s

Cite Your Freaking Sources

Nobody wants to fact check you. It gets annoying if you make a bold claim and don’t cite any articles to support your point. Unless you are just trying to shoot bullshit into the void, you need to prove your original thesis and credible articles are necessary. Emphasis on credible, as nobody wants you to back up your point with a Breitbart article. Not citing your sources is as bad now as it was when you were writing an analysis paper in high school, but now nobody is expecting MLA format. Just copy and paste a link in its own tweet and be done with it. This will make you seem much more credible, and they can’t just refute something by saying “fake” as easily.

Be as Concise as Possible

Nobody wants a 20 tweet/post thread. The whole point of twitter is short thoughts, so nobody wants to read a novel. Make it 5 tweets at the maximum, and keep it simple. While you want to make it clear what your point is, this is not the place to explain your entire belief system with all of the nuance and caveats it has. People will just get bored and disinterested, and now you have wasted 20 minutes proofreading a coup de grace only for them to get bored. Just get your point, and then save your time for rebutting theirs instead of giving them an entire lord of the rings book’s worth of characters to illustrate your point to this one person.

Be Respectful

Calling someone a libtard or other such insults ads nothing. Twitter is neck deep in the most sodium-rich of salts, and there is no reason to contribute to that by being a complete foreskin. Just make your point and stop tweeting. There is no reason to use namecalling as it adds literally nothing. I know it can be tempting if someone says something particularly abhorrent, but also consider that you are arguing with some random on the internet. There is no reason to be a tool because someone else is, and if you want to piss them off, taking the high road surely will get them annoyed

Proofread the Tweet/Post

spelling errors make you look extremely unprofessional. So stop just throwing something out there and not checking it. Grammarly exists as a chrome extension and it works for tweets. So make sure you haven’t made a spelling error before you throw your opinion onto the interweb. It will give the other person something to latch onto instead of addressing your point, thus derailing the entire conversation in lieu of someone using the wrong “your”.

The Don’ts

Don’t use Hashtags, GIFs, or Memes… Ever

 

Two memes in the reply of a trump tweet
yes they posted about 10 more under these two

These are the opposite of productive and add nothing to the conversation. Hashtagging it makes you seem desperate for attention and support. Nobody is checking #killary or #dumptrump and it just makes you seem like a tool. You are wasting characters that can be used to improve your thesis but instead, have chosen to use the hashtag #demswiththedeepstatefakenewsMAGA2020Trump to make your point (and you) look dumb. The memes just look dumb because

a.) nobody uses top text impact memes so it makes you look super out of touch.
b.) It looks like you can’t hold your own opinion and need to make fun of the other person rather than rebutting them

Don’t Argue with People in Replies

This might seem confusing because that is where most political arguments start, but try and transfer it to either a new thread or DMS. Keeping it in the replies just annoys the OP more and fills up their notifications. If you genuinely care about have an open dialogue, then take it to your DMS. There you don’t have character limits and aren’t annoying anyone else. If you just want to argue with someone for the sake of arguing… don’t.

 

I hope these were enlightening, and if you are interested in tuning into my political rants, some jokes, and other tat I find online, check me out on twitter. I think Twitter is a great place for people to learn more about themselves and other peoples opinions, and it is fantastic for facilitating a dialogue amongst people with different ideologies. That being said, you have to do it respectfully, or you’ll just look like an ass.