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Toxic is a dumb word with no meaning

Chiu on This
A short and regular opinion blast from Stephen Chiu

I’ve been in esports for a bit now. Long enough to remember when people like Slasher heavily campaigned for the use of eSports instead of esports. Having said that, I have no idea where the hell the word “toxic” comes from. It is an incredibly nebulous term that is applied everywhere and for no apparent reason. I’ve had people try to define what “toxic” means, an no one has given me a good definition.

Is it being a terrible person? Then why is it used for people that aren’t terrible, but just have outspoken opinions? Is it for people who have behavior that spreads around and makes the world a worse place? Well I have a problem with that notion as it assumes the person who is using the word toxic has a higher moral standard from which to judge what makes the world a better place and thus brand other people from a higher place. (You know like RiotLyte, the guy whose job it was to stop toxic people before his own shit became public). So if no one can be that moral arbiter, is it by consensus of the masses? That doesn’t work. First off, how do you measure the “consensus” of the masses? America’s strongest political parties and systems can’t even do that. Even if they could, then you’re just up to the whims of what is trendy for the day rather than some absolute moral principle. In which case, anyone can be the judge of what’s toxic, in which case I’ll go ahead and say that the toxic people are the people who label others as toxic as that is corrosive behavior that doesn’t apply any kind of logic to the one being accused.

Basically, toxic is a dumb word with no meaning.


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