While the federal parliament tries to head for a "kinder, gentler" way of doing things, social media is getting a bit nasty.
Which leads to the question - how many outings of an anonymous political blogger does it take to make Twitter explode with rage?
Just the one it seems.
On Monday, The Australian's online reporter, James Massola, outed anonymous political blogger, Grogs Gamut, as federal public servant, Greg Jericho. A bridge too far for many in the blogosphere and social media world who struck back to defend one of their own, and heavily criticise the mainstream media outlet's actions.
There's already been quite a bit of back and forth and I'm sure the debate about journalistic ethics and whether bloggers have an inalienable right to anonymity, with valid positions on both sides, will continue for some time. But what is even more remarkable is how loud and angry social media can get when it wants to be, especially when it's critical of institutional media.
Cue epic social vs mainstream media battle scene - avatars bloodied, editors armed to the teeth - this could get messy.
Gamut/Jerricho himself became famous (well, as far as a political blogger can) for criticising the big media institutions coverage of the 2010 election campaign. And he got his name out there when ABC head Mark Scott responded to the criticism, referring to it in a speech at the Melbourne Writers festival.
Criticism is one thing, but Twitter has turned into an all-day word stab-fest against The Australian and Massola. And likewise, lots of tweeps have gone all out to support the named blogger Gamut. Many even changing their avatars with banners like "I am @GrogsGamut." There was even the inevitable hashtag "GrogGate" created and a facebook group "If 100,000 people like this page I'll name my firstborn Grogs Gamut."
Twitterer and pot-stirrer extraordinaire, Catherine Deveny, put out a few comments that would fall into the abuse category, tweeting "#groggate is NOT about public interest, it's about envy and relevance deprivation. @grogsgamut? Good work. @jamesmassola? You f***wit."
And then later adding her own further two cents "@James Massola. You d***head."
More abuse followed from others in the Twitterverse much along the same lines. One of the top tweets of the day was from JeremysEar who said "@JamesMassola is quite right; only journalists may discuss politics. Everyone else needs to have their job threatened." And from another tweep "@JamesMassola You must be so proud of yourself, you petty and insecure little man".
Woah . . . harsh. So much for kinder, gentler.
Then the twitterverse tried to co-ordinate some strategies. Some suggested a mass boycott of the journo, while others reflected on the storm-in-a-teacup nature of it all. SMinney wrote; "Newsflash: Intelligent person with own opinions living in Canberra turns out to have a day-job unconnected with opinions."
Or just straight satire, mocking The Australian's position on the matter. MichaelByrnes tweeted "When is the satirist who writes columns under the name "Piers Akerman" going to be revealed?"
After all this bile and venom from the social media world, there is something that may comfort The Australian and James Massola. In the end, to bastardise a Wildian phrase, there is only one thing that is worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.
Definitely none of that at the moment. At least not on Twitter.
Bella Counihan works in the Press Gallery at Parliament House and writes for the National Times.