I have just returned, suitably scathed and chastened, from a short stay on a forum where people exchange views on subjects close to their heart. I was labouring under a misapprehension. In my innocence, I thought that all opinions would be welcome, if expressed in a civilised manner, but this turned out to be not quite the case. In my experience, these message boards are places where people come to air their obsessions which all tend in the same direction, leading to a claustrophobic and all too often toxic atmosphere.
Each post starts off reasonably enough with a well-written introduction post by the blogger, but since everyone is in agreement with this introduction, it seems that the only way to add a bit of spice to the proceedings is to descend, very suddenly and violently, into abuse and worse.
It's a bit like falling off the continental shelf.