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|In the beginning, the technology gods created the Internet and saw that it was good. Here, at last, was a public sphere with unlimited potential for reasoned debate and the thoughtful exchange of ideas, an enlightening conversational bridge across the many geographic, social, cultural, ideological and economic boundaries that ordinarily separate us in life, a way to pay bills without a stamp.It's possible that the social norms in this brave new domain will change once more -- with users shunning meanspirited attacks from posters hiding behind pseudonyms and cultivating civil debate instead. Until then, beware the nasty effect.|
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