And you thought it was Bad
"Gossip is not a trivial pastime: it is essential to human social, psychological and even physical well-being."
That is according to this study
Anyone who has been the victim of malicious gossip might beg to disagree though. Gossip can make you feel your privacy has been violated. It can stigmatize & humiliate people. Or it can lead to a culture where everyone is restricted for fear of the gossips. Somehow I can't see it as positively as this research suggests.