Being outraged at outrage is the new, uptown outrage. To just be outraged is passé, unserious; it is insufficiently meta and thinkpiecey. The real thought-leaders don't write more in anger than in sorrow about Bill Cosby rape accusations; they write more in sorrow than in anger about people writing about Bill Cosby rape accusations. It still gets the clicks, but has a gloss of respectability and contrarianism. Win-win.
The obvious next step is to be outraged at the outrage about the outrage, to wave one's fist in righteous fury at Slate's Year in Outrage, a clever piece of clickbait that lists outrages for every day of the year (with instapolling to entice readers to judge just how outrageous each case was) while writers simultaneously wring their hands over their complicity in outrage clickbaiting. But rather than go down the meta-road of meta-outrage one-upmanship, maybe it's worth asking, for a moment, whether outrage is really so bad or so new.
A few of Slate's essays acknowledge the virtues of outrage—Willa Paskin, for example, ultimately decides that criticizing television shows for their lack of diversity is a reasonable thing to do. But overall, the authors tend to present Internet outrage as a recent and troubling phenomenon. Amanda Hess worries that the outrage of the Internet has created a situation in which the "media order … is at risk of calcifying into a staid landscape where original thought is muffled by the wet blanket of political correctness." Jamelle Bouie worries that outrage may replace substantive politics: "If outrage stands in for activism, if we’re focused on the moral temperature of Internet individuals, then we’re distracted from the collective action—and collective institution building—that makes real reform possible." Betsy Woodruff points to the conservative outrage machine as a radical Tea Party departure from the right's traditional focus on gradualism and sober critique. Edmund Burke and William F. Buckley, she assure us, "eschewed the mob impulse, the scalp-hunting instinct, and the bellowing ire that's come to be business as usual in some quarters of the right." Thank God this country has never known a conservatism with mob impulses before, huh?