The coward’s world of Twitter

Bitter disappointment | Tom Daley may not have brought home a medal, but he has received widespread and enthusiastic support from followers and supporters, bar one mindless lowlife. (Image | The Telegraph)

The internet masks true identities. Companies use it to present a honed, targeted and user-friendly brand image. Celebrities attempt to show their “other sides” to the general public, while the great mass of Twitter users vent their frustration or anger on the micro-blogging site, or merely speculate on the issues of the day.

Yet Twitter also provides a shield for cruelty, hate and genuine abuse, the type of which would not be long tolerated in the street, on the Tube, or at any social gathering. Today, Tom Daley and Pete Waterfield failed to bring home the gold medal (or indeed silver or bronze) for Team GB that many had hoped they would. The pair dived excellently in their opening three attempts, and were leading the table before a disastrous fourth dive condemned them to exactly that position.

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