Of course, it goes without saying that whatever it is that people are deciding to be offended by today is probably not that important in the grand scheme of things. After all, being offended these days is probably the most popular participatory sport in the world, at least in the social media grumbleoshphere.
After all, being offended doesn’t need much special equipment beyond a computer, or phone, and a social media account. It is not as though much training is necessary either. Although, experts do say it is probably better to start off complaining about small unimportant things or getting offended by the behaviour of, say, next door’s cat, teenager or madwoman in the attic. They say it is best to get the hang of being offended by the local small and trivial before moving out into the wider reaches of the various social media platforms.
Although, many of the more experienced of the permanently outraged often say there is nothing quite as exhilarating as joining your first Twittermob to bully and bombard some socially-awkward deviant with wave after wave of virulent abuse. Often they are picked on merely because they have the audacity to differ from the accepted norm, daring to say – or even accidentally saying – the currently unsayable.
There are many others in the ranks of the permanently disgruntled though who feel that the number of amateur, or even only part-time, offendees is somewhat diluting the sport. After all, there is nothing more galling to the permanently outraged than discovering they are not in the vanguard of the righteously offended.
In fact, one of the more famous of the Twiteratti offence-takers, Hetty Bilespitter, recently complained that ’it is not fair. I used to be the first to be outraged by almost everything. For example, I was the first to accuse Tesco of sexism when they had a special offer on bananas and cucumbers, but not peaches or melons. Nowadays I have to stay up 24 hours a day watching my Twitter stream to make sure I’m the first one to be outraged or offended by something. It means I’ve had to give up my job and what little home life I had outside this basement. But it means that if there is something out there that the rest of the social media grumbleosphere needs to express its outrage and offendedness over, then I am there to lead the charge. Unfortunately, this fascist baby-eating Tory government, do not see this as a vital or essential role, which I perform for the benefit of society. The fascist bastards have threatened to stop my benefits. Which is – of course – an outrage and it deeply offends me. Although, I do think there is a chance of me getting a job in journalism, or even the public sector. Which means that I will still have time to monitor my Twitter feed all day. But still, it is an outrage, as I’ve just tweeted to both my followers.’
Anyway, such is the popularity of the sport that Sky TV has now set up a channel for fans of social media outrage. There they can watch the latest bursts of outrage on the various social media platforms as they happen, with live commentary and expert post-spat analysis from some to the country’s leading practitioners of outrage and offence taking. Not only that, there is talk that the International Olympic Committee is looking at allowing 400-Tweet Freestyle Offence Taking to be an Olympic sport at the 2020 Olympics. So it looks like offence-taking is here to stay, which some might find totally outrageous enough to claim they are offended by it.