Understanding forum personality types.
This is simply my opinion, I have no formal training that qualifies me to do this.
There are a number of traps that many new forum users fall into, particularly those who are used to dealing with mature, rational thinkers - in real life. This is not real life.
They believe that presenting a logical argument will be persuasive. That an accusation implies an onus to present some supporting evidence. That there will be one standard for all. That a minimum standard of ethics and integrity will be the premise by which all will behave and all will be judged.
Many of the regular contributors to forum discussions believe they have purchased a soapbox by trading, however insignificantly (
in fact they are simply squatters) upon which they can seek revenge for all of life's injustices, refute the lifetime character, IQ and personality assessments handed out to them and generally become the proverbial Big Frog in their chosen small puddle. What is truly astounding is, the number that will fit in that tiny puddle, defies all logic.
Acceptance is based more on whom you agree with than what you say. A definite statement can be simply changed to argue the opposite point of view without notice, apology or embarrassment.
An astute insight will not necessarily recieve more agreement and applause than an incorrect one, depending on who made it. A true statement is less likely to be applauded than a sarcastic snipe. Anyone who foolishly embarrasses a large frog will find that the brays of derision and demoniacal laughter elicited from the vocal minority would silence the protests of the rational majority, were there in fact a culture of courage that could prompt this.
Be prepared to have statements you did not make, actions you did not perform and intentions you did not have, accredited to you with disingenuous innocence. Be prepared to be ridiculed, denigrated and have your character assassinated at each and every opportunity. Be prepared to be sanctimoniously accused with pious outrage, of each and every abuse to which you are subjected.
It might not happen overnight - but it can happen.
With a little help from my friends!
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8 June 2009
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