Why Does So Much Hate Mail Come from Men

Justin Wolfers at the Freakonomics column has a thought provoking article on why so much hate mail comes from men.

He has these suggestions as to why:

Yes, I’m re-discovering that men are more aggressive than women. Duh. But why? Here are a few possibilities:

1. Preferences: Men find writing hate mail to be more enjoyable (or perhaps therapeutic).

2. Hormones: Aggression and testosterone are no strangers. See #1.

3. Cost of time: Typically we think about the wage as a marker of the marginal cost of time, but men have higher wages, which makes this all the more puzzling. Perhaps writing hate mail is crowding out ten minutes of SportsCenter for men, versus something more important (like childcare) for women.

4. Perceived productivity: Men are more likely to believe their missives will be closely read, leading the reader to nod slowly as they realize the error of their ways. Women are a bit more realistic.

5. Overconfidence: When there are competing views, men are often certain that they are right and I am wrong. Again, I would like to say that women are more realistic, but perhaps it is safer to simply say that they are less likely to be overconfident.

6. Value of anonymity: People are very rarely rude to me in person, suggesting that the anonymity of the internet is an important factor. Perhaps this is valued differently by men and women.

At last check there were 198 comments.  It's worth your while to read the full article – especially the comments. 

What's been your experience?  

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