It would be easy to assume that the open letter is a symptom of the Internet age. Such is not the case. In 1774, Benjamin Franklin wrote an open letter to the prime minister of Great Britain, Lord North - a satirical call for the imposition of martial law in the colonies.
Internet outrage can seem mindless, but it rarely is. To make that assumption is dismissive. There's something beneath the outrage - an unwillingness to be silent in the face of ignorance, hatred or injustice. Outrage may not always be productive, but it is far better than silence.
Something outrageous, in the truest sense of the word, is always happening. On social networks, we're always voicing our reactions to these outrageous events. We read essays and 'think pieces' about these outrageous events. We comment on the commentary. We do this because we can.