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Users and losers

September 5, 2015

There's an Elephant in the Room blog

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User: – exploiter, user, selfish person
usage: a person who uses something or someone selfishly or unethically

The word ‘exploitation’ is frequently used in connection with our behaviour towards those of species other than our own. I sometimes feel it’s a word we save specially for this circumstance, perhaps without truly considering its meaning. However almost every one of us is familiar with the word ‘user’. There are several definitions, but focusing on the one defined above, the word is rarely uttered unless it is in a tone laden with contempt.

Many of us have personal and unforgettable experience of feeling ‘used’ in some way or another; even more of us have sympathised with, comforted or supported other people who have experienced this at the hands of others. Few of us are in any doubt that this behaviour is beneath contempt, particularly as the using frequently involves a betrayal of trust…

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