Sometimes you get people arguing on-line and all you can think is…. OMG what do you have in your life that you do this?
What I mean is that they often want to project themselves as ‘experts’ on-line without being able to show any evidence of expertise. They produce nothing original, nothing beautiful, nothing inventive and yet they think an awful lot of themselves.
If you look at these people you will see that they are not usually well known for their skill even if they are well known as a ‘presence’ on-line. They would like to think of themselves as pillars of the community, and benevolent dispensers of knowledge even though it’s plain that their motivation is completely self serving. Often they try to make themselves known by arguing with people who are well known, who have achieved things, people who are often in demand as performers or teachers. They like to argue with these people as they somehow think that it puts them on a level with these people. Of course nothing could be further from the truth. They actually make themselves in to jokes, annoying jokes but jokes nonetheless.
They are often prodigious on-line posters forever recycling others work in an attempt to seem like the can ‘contribute’ copying and pasting swathes of others research and knowledge when they could have much more effectively and frankly with much more respect for the originators of that knowledge just linked to the creators website, or as is very often the case Wikipedia.
Arguing with these people brings up the law of diminishing returns, the more effort you put into being reasonable with them the less you get back. The real problem is that they’re not actually interested in being reasonable, they’re certainly not interested in learning. What they’re interested in is getting as much attention as possible, because if they can get you to argue with them that makes them feel like they’re worth arguing with.
The best and possibly only way to deal with this is just to point out the errors and not get sucked into the argument. For they will just argue and argue, and not even rationally until any reasonable person gives up and goes away to do something more useful with their time. At this point they will gleefully think they have ‘won’ the argument in some way as they were the last person making noise…. Remember they don’t actually have anything better to do than keep on with these pointless arguments. It is likely however that you do!
It’s helpful to think of them as unruly children who crave attention. It doesn’t matter that it’s bad attention just so long as it’s attention and they’ve found that this is a much easier route than actually getting attention by for instance achieving something worthwhile.
When you think about it rationally and step back away from the arguments you cannot help but, in a way, feel pity for these frankly somewhat pathetic individuals, after all what do they have in their lives that they spend their time behaving in this way? What self worth can they have? They have no real achievement of accomplishment or talent to call their own and can only call attention to themselves by arguing with those that do.
Having written this and now looking back on it I wonder how many people’s over inflated egos and senses of self importance are going to make them believe that I’m writing this article is about them personally? I can think of at least 5 people that these words could apply exactly too around the world and another dozen that most of this applies to. I wonder how their egos cope with the thought that they are also sadly very commonplace too.