The net is like any form of technology; it can be used for good or
ill depending on who's behind the keyboard.
On another level (if I can mix metaphors for a moment), the net is
like a large, and very capricious beast. If you show the least fear, it
will eat you. It's very clear that most of the folks at ST are afraid of
the nets, they HATE the nets, because info they don't want out GETS out,
the criticism can be very harsh...it's tough. In the case of B5, we work
WITH the nets, to the extent that even after showing an episode, giving
people new information, and information = power on the nets, if I ask that
it not be posted publicly until the show airs, in virtually every case
that request has been granted. Because you know who I am...and I know who
YOU are. That dialogue doesn't exist with ST.
For those not plugged in, it can be terrifying. Mira Furlan has
commented, in one on-line message, that the nets can be very cruel. This
is true. People forget sometimes that there's a person at the other end
of the keyboard, and especially when critiquing actors, do so in terms so
often cruel and unnecessary and hurtful. Michael O'Hare recently commented
at Chicago comic con that he was *deeply* hurt by many of the things said
about him on the nets...here in particular.
So it takes a *very* tough skin to stick it out here, lemme tell you.