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WOW, this was a riveting listen. I normally listen to nonfiction on my commute to work (so I can learn something useful while waking up sufficiently to be fully ready to learn more from my patients), and mysteries or thrillers on my way home (to keep me awake on the road). SYBPS was that incredibly rare nonfiction book that was so enthralling I found myself listening both to and from work and in any spare minutes I could find at home, eager to hear about the next case of real-life public shaming and what details Ronson, a crackerjack journalist, would dig up that would totally turn the story on its head. Jon Ronson, my new hero, has forever changed the way his readers view social media and the internet generally. I was especially astonished to read/hear about the flaws--which now appear glaringly obvious--in Zimbardo's Stanford Prison Experiment, a study which I had previously felt confident I understood and believed in the conclusions of. I'd say the only flaw in this book (a tiny one) is that the chapter on the Shame Eradication workshop is a little bit gratuitous and drawn out, probably to stretch it to closer to the length of other chapters. I recommend this book to every adult. Grade: A-plus.
21 of 25 people found this review helpful
I expected this book to be a bit more light hearted, like a retrospective and sympathetic look at old memes like the Rebecca Blacks and Light Saber Ninja meme kids who the Internet turned into jokes. Instead Ronson takes the reader to the darkest levels of public shaming and forces us to see how we are all part of this modern epidemic of social media shaming. He focuses in on the way shame destroys people on such a fundamental level and how difficult it is to recover from being publicly shamed. My biggest complaint is probably the books length, I'm left wondering about so many people in the book and how their stores unfold, I also wish there were more explorations on shame as it effects physical wellbeing. Like all of Ronson's books it is a compilation of people's stories and experiences that are all centered around a single theme, but I feel in this instance there are so many more stories that could've been tied in. Regardless, I found it very intriguing, and entertaining (and I now feel ashamed for finding a book about shaming people entertaining...). Ronson's narration is fantastic as well.
41 of 50 people found this review helpful