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Gossip - Healthy socialising or a bad trait?

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  • Gossip - Healthy socialising or a bad trait?

    Hey guys

    I've spent a while at university now, and with that has come new experiences - living with friends, having very close bonds with people and having many opportunities to talk to new people are some examples. However, a natural result of this is increased opportunity to gossip, which appears to be a very popular indulgence.

    Gossiping - the act of talking about other people's private lives - seems to have a negative connotation in society (even though Googling "gossip" results in various newspaper websites), but do you think gossip is always a negative thing? Does engaging in gossip make you a worse person for it, or is it just a natural result of humans being social animals? When should we embrace gossip and when should we reject it?

    The Mix has expert advice on gossip here and provides a perspective for both sides:

    I'm interested to hear your thoughts!
    Last edited by Kaze; 24-08-2017, 02:12 PM. Reason: added tags

  • #2
    Hey I honestly believe that gossiping isn't bad it's just the type of gossip.

    "did you know .... is pregnant?"
    "Really, no I didn't."
    "Yeah she put it on Facebook last week"
    "Good for her"

    This type of gossip isn't what I'd call bad. Yes ok They are discussing someones privet life but as it was on Facebook, the person was obviously ok with people knowing.

    Another example is this

    "I heard .... is with another guy now"
    "Omg really? How do you know and what happened to the last one?"
    "Who knows with her lol one of them must have cheated lol and I saw her with him yesterday.

    In that message details were being speculated about a relationship without knowing facts or having proof that anything was actually happening and if that person was ok with it being shared.

    I think that gossip should only be shared if

    1. It won't really effect someone. Eg ".... went home ill yesterday"

    2. You know the person doesn't mind it being shared. Normally I think that it's ok to say something when it is being posted on social media as it is being shown to a bigger audience anyway.

    3. It does not in anyway bully or humiliate anyone else.


    • #3
      Hi guys

      ​This is such an interesting discussion Kaze, because of the negativity attached to the word gossip.

      ​I actually googled the definition of the word and it states that it is: 'casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details which are not confirmed as true'

      ​​In this sense, I guess it is bad and I agree One-in-a-million:

      I think that gossip should only be shared if

      1. It won't really effect someone. Eg ".... went home ill yesterday"

      2. You know the person doesn't mind it being shared. Normally I think that it's ok to say something when it is being posted on social media as it is being shown to a bigger audience anyway.

      3. It does not in anyway bully or humiliate anyone else.
      ​If you are sharing a 'secret', news that is 'false' or purposefully hurting someone, gossip is of course bad. You mentioned Magazines Kaze and these can be so brainwashing and traumatising, especially for teenage girls. They can implement certain behavioural changes in people and encourage us to bully, criticize, judge and stereotype people.

      ​I feel such an urge to reject all of this type of 'gossip' and personally avoid those types of magazines, websites and comments.

      ​But like you both mentioned, what if it is just general information? Like passing on news about a friend or colleague?

      ​In this case, it's fine and not damaging.

      But how can we tell the difference?

      I know that we can usually tell when someone is being mean or malicious but how are we meant to know if something is true/false or crossing the line?

      It's a tricky subject! What do you guys think?



      • #4
        Hmm. My personal experience of a toxic friend group & gossip was that when I was feeling particularly bad one time and I wanted to vent to them about it, I thought about all the times they made fun of someone behind their back for feeling exactly like I felt and as much as I knew they likely wouldn't make fun of me for it I didn't want to be around people who i was scared to express myself to.
        Those people still claim it was harmless - but i know the people they shit talked constantly because I revealed all of it to those people and they were hurt. And i think that's the difference.

        "Bad" Gossiping is the kind that hurts people, not even the information but peoples reactions to it - when going behind someones back i like to think, what if i did this in front of them? would i still say this? and if yes then i gossip and if no then i don't because what goes around comes around, if one spreads negativity they're going to receive negativity (especially when someone gets tired of all the mean things, reveals it to all of the people they said bad stuff about, and then the people got mad ((and sad)) about it- i may still be salty at those former friends. maybe.) and also it helps me to think if it's a breach of privacy, whether that person would want the information out there - sometimes i straight up ask "is it alright if i tell another person about this?" even if i just want to spread a persons cool and awsome adventures.

        Good gossip is harmless, doesn't shame anyone, isn't breaching anyones privacy. Mostly it's the reaction to gossip that makes it good/bad - take for example the phrase " X had a panic attack yesterday" - a reaction like "lmao oh my god so dramatic" would be bad gossip, but something like "oh no, i'll check up on them later" is good gossip, context is essential and some people are just prone to make bad gossip because they gotta make everything dramatic and think making fun of people is cool- whoops my salt at former friends came out again.

        I don't like to spread gossip if i don't know if it's true, and if i'm spreading something that i didn't personally see and don't have evidence of i word it carefully and emphasise the words 'i heard it happened but i haven't seen any evidence' and people who instantly assume that it's a true fact because someone said it can suffer because they'll create a lot more drama than is warranted by doing so- damn there's the salt again.

        Why didn't you just shout i'm lonely and i'm looking for a place to go ~ Where everything's an embrace and everybody wants to know


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