Gossip that is slanderous

What is your experience with GOSSIP? Do you thing that it is just being interested in others and passing on the news? Or has your life been devastated by gossip? Gossip, is by definition "casual or unconstrained conversation that is typically not confirmed".  Now, I think that is a good definition.

First, when we talk about others, we should at least know that what we say is true, or we risk the reputations of being  liars and a gossipers, so we can seriously damage ourselves by spreading false and malicious rumors even if we don't care about the damage to others. Maybe, that is the best reason not to gossip. I don't thing a habitual gossiper ever thinks of that reason.

Most people know that if you talk loosely or gossip about others to me, you will talk loosely about me to others, so most people will not confide in you or trust you. This is a second good reason not to gossip, that gossipers may miss. Gossipers miss the good reasons not to gossip and go on doing it for years.

How bad is gossip? In many lives people may be lucky and they just know of gossip as idle chit chat and not have direct knowledge of the destructive power of gossip at its worst. Gossip can destroy lives, marriages, friendships and professional reputations. I am not exaggerating. Gossip is evil and is a form of bullying that is causing suicides by young people and gossip can destroy the social fabric of a person's existence and or livelihood. Gossip, is bad and it is not possible to defend against it because the damage is usually done before it is discovered and it is like once released, it can never be contained again.

Idleness, and boredom help to keep gossip alive. The daily routine gets boring and people lack the creative energy to start a hobby or work for a cause, or some other interesting diversion so they gossip. I think this happened in my family; as the family grew older and independent some women with no pleasures in life got into gossip. Their lives had been good and useful, but sadly, they did not see themselves that way. People who gossip usually do not feel good about themselves and only focus on the negative in their lives and the lives of others. This is what I believe.

I used to say jokingly that half the people in my family could not be paid to lie and the other half could not be paid to tell the truth. I did not take the lies seriously until it was too late. My family trust and cohesion has been destroyed by gossip. I think we all need to take loose talk and unconfirmed rumors very seriously, it damages the loose talkers as well as the innocent ones about which they talk.

What do you think of gossip and how has it impacted your life and the lives of people close to you? If it has not done serious damage at some time, you have been exceedingly lucky but don't doubt that gossip can strike at any time like a hidden viper ready to attack.

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Published in People & Events

Comments

  1. starlette

    Hello Rose……..GOSSIP CEASES WHEN IT REACHES WISE EARS….I think it gives the gossiper a feeling of power to be privy to some information that we may not be, and to make it more exciting they add bits to it…….it can be very dangerous and hurtful….. I know two women gossips very well…….one comes across as a sickly sweet person who spends her day In and out of elderly peoples flats on the pretence she is helping them……in fact she is picking up gossip in the laundry room with other residents….she isn’t the sharpish knife in the box and couldn’t tell you anything about world affairs, but she could tell you who lived where and with who, and how many kids they had, where they originated from and who their great grandparents were back to the year dot…so boring……but a nasty piece of work under the false smile…….the other one pretty much the same but more up to date with current gossip…cough cough…….but again the one thing they have in common is………… both nasty and jealous of other people……

    1. roseinbloom Post author

      Starlette, as per usual, you seem to have good insight on this problem. I see you included nasty and jealous which is what I believe gossips are, though I find it hard to relate to such people as I am not that type. I have been too busy living my life to keep track of others. All I want to know is if they are alright or if they need help.
      It is sad that many women our age have come to this kind of way of life.

  2. waylander

    An old Spanish saying comes to mind. “We have two ears but only one mouth, therefore we should listen twice as much as we shout”
    To me that means whatever you hear keep your damned mouth shut.

    1. roseinbloom Post author

      Starlette, I just included false or unfounded talk, since talk about people can be truthful and it can be well-intentioned. With gossip you say they add bit to it, which is usually true, but some gossips make up thing totally and do not have a word of truth.

  3. Rockflower

    Gossip that is slanderous has broken the law of slander. The problem is in the definition of the slander, and difficulty in proving it. There is however lots of talk that can be cruel, manipulating and mischief making which is not perhaps in law slanderous. So I think it is all in the intent because those people using social discourse to diminish another or cause mischief know what they are doing. It is often a cowardly action, such people not having the courage to talk in open fashion their problem with a group or a particular person……they address their problem obliquely behind the person’s back. I think we use the term gossip to cover all kinds of human talking interaction, gossiping is not necessarily weaponized or bad. Gossiping in general is a kind of social grooming and amongst good people a pleasure that bonds people together and maintains sense of community. The constant to and fro of conversation between friends and acquaintances reinforces the morals and values of a particular society and builds trust. Jane Austin the great observer of 18th,century England. Has Elizabeth Bennet’s father in ‘Pride and Prejudice’ , say (I paraphras”). We exist but to provide entertainment for our neighbours “. So nothing has changed there then LOL! I live in very rural situation and we all observe each other, everything is noticed and probably commented on. I love watching people , listening to people and I hope if I occasionally judge , I do it kindly. If I hear something I feel unfair, harsh I would comment on it. Any thing downright nasty I would shut it down promptly and my opinion of the teller lowered . I do want people to engage in lively, honest, meaningful and funny conversations. Live would be dull with out such. So cup of coffee and a light hearted gossip please.