Answering Posts In-kind
Dear Fellow 'Hounds:
I am increasingly distressed by the number of just-plain-mean and argumentative answers I've recently seen popping up here. I don't mean posts where one hound disagrees respectfully with another. I'm talking about when someone posts something and immediately gets hit with really crappy, nasty-sounding answers.
I'm not thin-skinned. I can brook disagreement, or even debate. I certainly don't mind when someone's opinion differs from my own. It's kinda why we're here, eh?
What I find annoying is when the ratpacking begins with someone who states their own opinion in a negative or confrontational way. I do understand the function of the "report" button and use it all the time, say what you will about that. My point is that there's a way to phrase anything and phrase it politely. I don't believe I've ever come at anyone less-than-respectfully. (Okay, on thinking it over I can think of ONE post where I really blew, and I'm not proud of it. If I could actually remember where it was, I'd go back and aplogize for that.)
We're all adults here. I think perhaps that when people are having a bad day, they tend to blow a little harder and hotter than they ordinarly would. I do make allowance for that. But there does seem to be a core group who thinks their function here is to totally diss someone else. You know who you are, I think: or else you're completely lacking in self-awareness.
No reason whatsoever to be unkind. I for one am glad that the vast majority aren't.
Just a thought.
Folks, this thread is already going down the path of calling out individual posters, and that's not okay. We're going to lock it now, and we'd ask that everyone take mamachef's suggestion to be more friendly (as well as our own suggestion to assume friendliness instead of unfriendliness) to heart.
We do realize there are some snotty answers out there. But there are also a lot of fairly straightforward, factual answers that are interpreted as mean-spirited or rude, even when there's a good chance they weren't meant to be.
It's the nature of plain text, and particularly so on Chowhound, where people try to keep their replies keenly focused, for things to come across sounding cold or mean even if that wasn't intended. And then someone takes that the wrong way, responds in a deliberately cold or mean tone, which in turn gets interpreted as even colder and meaner and a very chilly cycle of increasing hostility is created.
So while we do encourage everyone to POST in as friendly a manner as possible, we also encourage everyone to READ in as friendly a manner as possible -- assume that the posters around you are posting in good faith and the spirit of helpfulness and respond accordingly. If that's correct, you've avoided creating a problem where there wasn't one, and if it isn't correct, you haven't made a bad situation worse.
re: The Chowhound Team
I guess that's fair enough, though I do make an effort not to keep the flamewars going by my responses. And I do need to say that I don't go looking for trouble, ever. It's pretty easy to see when someone's being deliberately shnotty, as evidenced by the posts I'm sure you're fully aware of by now on HC. Come on. I'm not dense.
re: Heidi cooks and bakes
It's just hard when you state your opinion, you're told that you're wrong. Really, how can an opinion be wrong. Or, you're told you don't "get it", or you "don't understand".
Ad hominem attacks should be out of bounds, period. Say you disagree. Explain why you see things the way you do, but don't insult my reading, comprehension, ability to express myself and intelligence in general.
Thanks for the topic, mamachef. It needed to be said and I'm glad to get this off my chest. Thanks for listening.