Racism Alive And Well On The Internet

POSTED: 08:10 AM PDT Sep 27, 2011    UPDATED: 05:46 AM PDT Sep 27, 2010 
PALM DESERT -

When you walk down the street on any typical day, what you're not bound to hear repeated racial remarks.

When you head online, though, the voices of bigotry jump off the webpage at you.

More people are using their screen names as a barrier to hide behind when they have strong opinions to share, according to a report released over the weekend. That is fueling a growing sense of racism online.

Because people can be anonymous, anyone can post a racist or derogatory comment on a website, and not get personally attacked for it.

We see it on our website: KESQ.com.

Even the most horrific stories, like a teenager set on fire in Coachella prompted what some would consider hateful comments. One of our visitors posted he deserved it because he was "probably illegal."

Protesters who vented their anger over Arizona's new immigration law were targeted, too. Some of our visitors accused them of using welfare to get their supplies for the event.

Perhaps the most surprising trend with racist comments, most of them are coming from adolescents, prompting what some feel is more education for young people in defense mechanisms online.

You can see the study here.

On our website we have a feature where visitors can "flag" comments that are inappropriate, and we can remove them.