Certainly, I am not providing new information when I state that the anonymity provided (to some degree) and relative remoteness (again, to some degree) by the WWW brings out callousness in otherwise polite people.
I have often seen PerlMonks referred to as a community. Certainly this is the case. There is a great deal of psychology behind this statement that I will not go into, but suffice it to say that here there are community leaders (established through the politics of this site, e.g. the code and XP system, among other things) and there are the troublemakers (those who make it their business to condemn or otherwise undermine the feeling of community).
Where am I going with this? As a homeowner, I have neighbors. I do not like all of my neighbors and have little to do with any of them. However, I am polite to all of them because I still have to live here.