Hater (Internet)

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Hater is a derogatory term used to describe people who are derogatory towards people. Haters behave as such not out of jealousy, but out of the need to reduce the target of hatred’s standing. The term is often used as an abusive ad hominem attack to dismiss any negative criticism. It is also often commits the fallacy of begging the question as it exempts the abusive use of the word hater from being considered hateful by assuming it's reasonable and the criticism made by the supposed hater is not. [1]

Haters are identified as people who offer solely negative criticism to others, without justification. Haters deal in negative cognitive bias, prejudicially arriving at a conclusion first and then drawing in their reasons afterward, refusing to alter their conclusion with exposure to the opinions of others. Haters are frequently thought of as imposing their self-hate on others.[citation needed]

A Hater is not simply someone who offers criticism. It is sometimes used as an accusation against others with different opinions, even against those who offer constructive criticism. Furthermore, mere negativity does not make a Hater- it is negativity without a justifiable basis.[citation needed]

Word and Concept Origins[edit]

The term hater dates back to the 14th century, though at this time it was defined simply as “one who hates an enemy.” [2] The modern usage of the term sometime around the late 1990s,A lot of people use slang terms without knowing their true origins. Many of the popular ones come from the slang heavy Bay Area. For example, It’s commonly used but its roots are found in Richmond, California with a rapper named Filthy Phil.

Back in the days (80s) there was a group of police called the Cowboys. They were a rough bunch who were actually profiled on the news show 60 Minutes. Phil ran with a crew who called themselves the Playboys.. “players” for short.

The cowboys used to mess with Phil’s crew and hence got dubbed ‘Player Haters‘. That was the original meaning., Then in the 90's rapper Biggie Smalls used it in his song “Playa Hater”.[1] The song proclaims “we have the playas, and we have the playa haters”, and continues “please don’t hate me because I’m beautiful”, accusing Biggie’s critics of jealousy.

Notable Instances[edit]

On September 20, 1996, at the University of California Irvine campus, an email from "Asian Hater" was sent to around sixty Asian American students of the school. The culprit was later identified through their use of university computing labs to send out the emails. The culprit’s defense while on trial was that the whole thing was a "joke".[2]

In 2012, British comedian Isabel Fay produced a song called “Thank You Hater” facetiously thanking internet trolls for their aggressive and unconstructive criticisms of her work. [3]

Effects on Modern Society[edit]

Internet hate is a growing problem with few recognized solutions. Current research shows that many children are getting their first introduction to group hate through the internet. Being on the internet leads to a heightened sense of community between "haters", which range from Holocaust Deniers to school children. In the past, civil suits have been used as a way to combat internet hatred like that in the case of The University of California, Irvine.(Stern, Kenneth Saul. Hate and the Internet. New York, NY: American Jewish Committee, 1999.)

In instances such as the Irvine situation and Isabel Fay (who noted “sexual aggression” as a form of abuse which inspired her 2012 sartorial song “Thank You Hater”), prejudice can be a significant factor in inspiring internet hate. Those who step out of traditional societal roles are more susceptible to hate of this form than those with less strictly defined roles.

Hater is a derogatory term which refers to a person who expresses hatred in public forums, especially those found on the World Wide Web such as YouTube.[3]

Haters are distinguished from trolls who seek to attract attention by making provocative comments.[4]

Haters may become organised into groups and the seven stage model of hate crime developed by Schafer and Navarro for the FBI may explain their behaviour:[5][6]

  1. The hater finds other with similar views to form a group
  2. The group develops symbols and rituals to identify itself
  3. The group shares its views to bond itself
  4. The target is taunted
  5. The target is attacked
  6. The target is attacked with weapons
  7. The target is destroyed

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Haters’ Are Going to Hate This Story". NPR. 
  2. ^ Lee, Mavis. "Hate Crime on the Internet: The University of California, Irvine Case.". Anti-Asian Violence in North America: Asian American and Asian Canadian Reflections on Hate, Healing, and Resistance 7. 
  3. ^ Michael Strangelove (2010), "Haters, Spammers, and other Deviants", University of Toronto Press, pp. 118–120, ISBN 9781442610675 
  4. ^ Zoe Williams (12 June 2012), "What is an internet troll?", The Guardian 
  5. ^ Paul Bocij (2006), The Dark Side of the Internet, Greenwood Publishing Group, pp. 190–194, ISBN 9780275985752 
  6. ^ J.R Schafer, Joe Navarro (2003), "The Seven-Stage Hate Model", FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin 

Further reading[edit]

  • Janis L. Judson, Donna M. Bertazzoni (2002), Law, media, and culture: the landscape of hate, ISBN 9780820449814 
  • Paul J. Becker, Bryan Byers, Arthur Jipson (2000), "The Contentious American Debate: The First Amendment and Internet-based Hate Speech", International Review of Law, Computers & Technology 14 (1), doi:10.1080/13600860054872