Actor Scott Baio gestured while speaking at the Republican National Convention (RNC) in … [+]
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It may be a “buddy comedy” in which two polar opposites overcome their differences and become close friends, but comedian / actor Patton Oswalt and Scott Baio are unlikely to fix any fences. Instead, the two embarked on a very public and sometimes quite hostile showdown on Twitter that began Thursday.
This is just the latest celebrity argument to be posted on social media, and unlike previous feuds with stars and starlets, it makes it all the easier for fans to join the fight.
It started when Oswalt took to Twitter Thursday to mock those who believed President Donald Trump would be inaugurated for a second term. The comedian called Baio, a well-known Trump supporter, directly.
“Folks, I’m at DuPont Circle Pinkberry for the #TrumpInauguration. I’m here with four Proud Boys, their mothers and Scott Baio. Did we get the address wrong? Help me, this Minuteman costume is itchy.” “
The humor was shared by others, including consumer advocate Erin Brockovich (@ErinBrockovich) who added, “Patton, it’s at Pinkberry Landcaping in Roslyn”.
Scott Baio (@ScottBaio) responded and took fire on Oswalt: “Poor Oswalt needs two prescriptions. One for his TDS and one for his STD itch!”
Oswalt fired back, “Oh YIKES. I don’t even have this guy ‘@’. Poor Juice is looking for his name on Twitter. Nobody dives into him, that’s really depressing. BUGSY MALONE is still a great movie, isn’t it?”
It didn’t take long for both celebrities to be trending on social media.
Some users also noticed that the first exchange it wasn’t addressed to @ScottBaio, suggesting that the actor look for tweets with his name. Oswalt’s followers noted “he has a career” while others compared the number of followers of the two celebrities.
A common theme in the discussions was that few under 30 would even know who Baio is, while some joked that this might be the case for those under 45! Baio seemed to accept it, however.
“Do I have to be on TV … #No #Blessed,” the actor wrote.
Even then, many people on social media continued to mock the actor with memes and other insults.
But one user, Jeff Harper (@realJeffHarper) stood by Baio: “Vengeance lives well. Kudos, sir. I hope you have a wonderful weekend. God bless you.”
Bad role models
This recent spit on social media is yet another example of our deep nationwide divide, and further demonstrates how difficult “unity” can really be as it is now so easy to publicly mock another person. Social media has also allowed once low-key feuds to get quite heated, but it has also allowed anyone to take sides.
“The filters are off and things get personal very quickly online,” said Josh Crandall, technology industry analyst at Netpop Research. “Celebrities are people, and when arguments get personal, people tend to get angry. It is in our DNA to defend ourselves and that leads to us saying things we will later regret.”
Celebrity feuds have certainly gotten more extreme thanks to social media.
“Celebrity flare-ups on Twitter tend to follow some courses,” said Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT. “Some are personal branding efforts aimed at drawing attention to someone who believes the limelight will pass them by by engaging theatrically with someone of a far higher profile. Others seem more ethical, like the abolition of the historian Kevin M. Kruse. ” historical falsehoods which various public figures claim to be true. Over time, such exchanges tend to follow very predictable trajectories, although the verbal slap-downs seem to keep people coming back. If it worked for Don Rickles, maybe Scott Baio can give it a try. “”
While Oswalt or Baio’s careers are unlikely to suffer – and in some ways they could be in the spotlight for a moment – the rest of us may not. Heated words posted on social media live forever, and as the platforms have become a medium of broadcast, even something intended for a small audience has a truly global reach.
“There will be a moment during the day when we get into an anxious or frustrated moment,” added Crandall. “People aren’t perfect. We’ll lose sight of what’s best for us in those stressful moments and just react with a flame and keep the tension going online. So we need to think about our online comment the same way we do when writing A difficult letter to a boss or family member. Often the best course of action is to write the note and not send it for at least a couple of hours. Many times after rereading what we wrote after the fog leaves you with stress after, we will weaken it a little. “
It’s also always common for fans to take sides and that’s why these got so hot.
“There are certainly prominent Twitter users who are approached by individuals and groups who disagree with them,” added King. “If the target in question takes criticism and complaints too seriously, it offers attackers exactly what they want to achieve. Alex Baldwin is a good example of this dynamic. Others have a more mature and nuanced approach. For example, the Twitter account The Bestseller- Science fiction novelist John SCalzi (@scalzi) will be pinned a tweet explaining how he uses the service and what followers can expect, including muting, blocking or reporting. I believe his approach is the most practical and mature. “”
Celebrities have publicists and other handlers to help manage such situations and even defuse situations. While this exchange wasn’t exactly between Hollywood A-listers, it’s still possible behind the scenes fences could be mending. Again, this is not a luxury that most people would have, which is why this feud should be viewed as a cautionary story rather than for the sake of humor.
“We all have to be better ‘handlers’ of ours today,” said Crandall. “Communication is instant and often public. It is more important than ever to step back, breathe, and think about what you are saying online.”