Eight Tips if You’re Going to Be a Social A**hole

You’ll be shocked to know I occasionally rub people the wrong way.

Sometimes, I get nicely-written “Gee, Ian, I’m not sure I agree” missives. Other times, I get lengthy rants, or a quick, passive-aggressive comment on Twitter.

It’s all good. I get it. You don’t agree with my feelings on duplicate content and RSS feeds. You respond. None of this will tilt the Earth off its axis.

But Then…

But then there are the people who write stuff, apparently, just to see what’ll happen:

Okaaaayyy. Everyone has the right to be an a**hole. I exercise that right often and with enthusiasm. But if you’re going to do it, I have some tips:

    1. Learn to write complete sentences. You use commas like cheap carpenter’s glue and string together five sentences into one big run-on sentence, it really makes you sound like illiterate moron, that really hurts your credibility.
    2. Understand what your words mean. While I do occasionally drool on my keyboard, I don’t think that’s what this person meant. The word is ‘drivel’:

    1. Use the right ‘your’. This makes me want to punch your English teacher in the face:

    1. Have a real profile. If you go trolling in a discussion forum, and this is the second time you’ve ever posted anything at all, folks aren’t going to pay a lot of attention. Bulk up first.
    2. Read the article. Want to be a butthead? Fine. But read the damned article first. Understand it. Then go and start a flame war. For example, if an article points out that Facebook pay per click ads double as free display ads, and you say:

      …it makes you like a repeat customer at the Stupid Fountain.

    1. Look for inconsistencies. I know Margie Phelps and her fellow phobes are idiots, but wow:

    1. Understand the silent treatment. Your goal is to post something mind-numbingly stupid. You succeed. Our minds go numb.
    2. Expect results! When you make an outrageous comment, complete with third-grade wording and Rummesfeld-esque reasoning, I’ll probably take the bait. It’s just too easy:

My Real Point

We’ve come to value volume over content. In marketing these days, loud stupidity often crushes quiet intelligence.

You should take an opposing viewpoint. You must challenge my assumptions, or the assumptions of any other ‘experts’.

Just make sure your challenges add something to the discussion. You should always raise the level of discourse, not lower it.

And yeah, I have my moments, too:

One comment

  • In regards point 3.

    I challenge anyone to get
    your
    you’r
    you’re
    or your’ correct.

    I need to use that important part of my brain for other things… like figuring out where the toilet is.

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