Welcome to Clarabells tutorial: “Existing on the Internet: how not to be flamed”
This will be useful to you is one or all of the following is true:
1. You are new to the forums 2. You are new to forums in general 3. You are under the age of 19 4. You are under the impression that anonymity creates feelings of good will 5. You believe this is 4chan
If you are under the impression of 4 then you probably have EVERY SINGLE FRIEENS on myspace (over 9000 friends). Just because they friend you doesn’t mean they like you.
If number 5 is the case…what happens on 4chan STAYS on 4chan.
Let us begin.
What is flaming? Flaming is the mockery and general insults a person obtains from people online that is started because of what the person in question says.
The difference between Noob and Newb Newbies are adored by everyone. They are new, but they are respectful and open to comments and criticism. While the criticism may be harsh sometimes, it cannot be considered trolling because it is useful.
Noobs are people who get flamed. No trolls required. However, to the noob, it seems like everyone’s trolling them. They view criticism as trolling. A noob persona is defined by all the things listed in the section “Reasons people get flamed”.
What is a troll? A troll is someone who starts flaming/spaming for no real justifiable reason apart from causing mass irritation. The most famous example comes from world of warcraft. Just type in “THUNDERFURRY BLESSED BLADE OF THE WINDSEEKER” into trade and see what happens.
What are admins and mods? Admins and mods are the dudes who decide who’s trolling and who’s not. If someone posts something negative towards you and right below theres a moderator/admin post, and they don’t say anything in warning, you can safely assume that there is, in fact, no trollin’ goin on.
Now flaming can get pretty bad at times. I myself have been flamed so badly that I’ve left forums before. Hence the reason I will never return to GamingW. Never. However, you are on RRR. Here the mod’s and admins are awesome. If they say its flaming, its flaming. If they say it’s not, it’s not. Not because they say so, but because they are excellent judges of what flaming is and what it is not.
So how does one go about getting flamed? What makes you that one particular snowball in the inferno of hell? Let’s find out…
Reasons people get flamed
You’re project is the greatest project ever and everyone else’s project sucks. You will be that one person who breaks the industry and rebuilds it from the deepest inferno all the way back to paradise.
Keep on thinking that. Thinking it is fine. Taking steps towards being Senior Awesome Pants is fine. Just don’t tell anyone.
Remember, most people think EXACTALLY the same thing. ‘s far as they be concerned, they’re more awesome than you. Always more awesome. Always.
2~Asking for everything, offering nothing
Pics or it didn’t happen. And I don’t just mean screenshots. If were talking about looking for recruits to help build your game, you need to prove that you have something awesome underway. If you just have one posts worth of material, don’t post. If you have a 20 page document of what you’ve come up with so far, sure. If you have a demo, ok. Trailer? Fine.
One post does not a team create. Offer everything. Expect very little. That is how not to start getting flamed.
You’ve all seen them before. It’s that guy who’s mastered 7 martial arts and can skateboard better than Tony Hawk, and he speaks 26 languages fluently (seriously, knew a girl who claimed that once). If you haven’t see them before, find a mirror. You see that dude? Yeah. That one right there.
That’s who I’m talking about.
Pics….or it didn’t happen. Pics being whatever the hell you’re embellishing.
Or, even better, if you really can speak every single languages, just shut up about it. Ask yourself, does it do ANYONE any good to know this information? No? Good. Stuff it.
I am a writer. I worked for a newspaper. I’ve published some articles. Nothing major. Small town, but still. I’ve done that. Can I spell? No. I use to spell friends as freins. I learn to spell a new word about once a month. One word, one month. There are some words I spell so badly that I have to rewrite whole sentences because I can’t use that word cause spellcheck is like WTF ARE YOU DOING?!
How do I solve this? Microsoft word. Don’t have it? Firefox. It has spell check. Unsure of a word? Google it.
I can be using such tactics of language as ‘dis sentence and it be fine. Why? ‘Cause I understands the language, and it be obvious I does. When I talk like that, it’s because I’m either being ironic or ridicules. But I don’t do that ALL THE TIME. Just like I don’t use caps ALL THE TIME.
Once you know the rules, you know how to break them.
Also, never EVER use things like R, U, w8, etc. That’s fine for texting. That’s what net-speak is for. Texting. However, here you are on a forum with full use of time and a keyboard. Type it out. No one respects net-speak.
This one can go on for a long time….
Forums: Its like being a native English speaker and going to mexico. You speak terrible Spanish, people going to snicker. Only here its worse, because if you are a native English speaker, and seeing as these forums are in English…
Proper English. Not using it is like me speaking old norse, only not as awesome.
5~Being an Inquisitive Idiot
There are no stupid questions. Being an Inquisitive Idiot in the real world is asking a question at the wrong time or to the wrong person. Being an Inquisitive Idiot online means asking a question that’s already been asked.
The hierarchy of questioning: 1~Google 2~Search Box 3~New Thread
If you google, then search, and find nothing then post AND THEN someone links you a post of the same question, it means you missed something. Not your fault. You searched. Maybe you put in the wrong words. Irrelevance: Still going to eat that kitten. Accept it, say thank you, apologize that you missed it, eat the kitten, move on.
The kitten being the droids information you’re looking for.
Now that you’ve found the droids you’re looking for in this post, let me give you another kitten: How to avoid flame wars.
What are flame wars? Flame wars begin when someone posts something critical about something you posted, or you encounter a wild troll…
…and you flame them back.
In the case of a wild troll: ignore it. Move on. Once you spend enough time online, you’ll be able to see trolls from 42 parsecs away. Points if you know the abbreviation for parsec is.
In the case of the critic: be tame, don’t flame. Keep your comments in your pants where they belong. You don’t have to whip it out to prove your commets are bigger and better than everyone elses.
How to avoid a flame war
1~There are no winners of a nuclear holocaust
Unless they are off-worlders lawling at then dumb-apples on the ground blowing each other up. In the case of forums, however, you, the one who started the war, are the only one who loses, unless there are a few other dumb-apples around who don’t know when to stuff it back into their pants.
Starting down the path of flames is easy. And it will seem difficult to resist the temptation of flaming others when you perceive that they have flamed you. However, participating in a flame war is bad for ya. It destroys your reputation quickly, even more so if you aren’t dealing with a troll but a person with ‘legit reason to roast you.
2~Never flame the admins/mods
Not because they can ban you, but because they were most likely chosen because they know what they are doing. If you encounter a mod who really is the tree from which dumb-apples are produced, then you don’t flame them anyways because they can ban you. However, I’ve only seen one moderator on a forum in all my life who was like that. It is exceedingly rare.
3~Do not flame newbies
Newbies are to be treasured and adored so that they post more and we all have more to talk about. A newbie
Not flaming is a good thing. Not trolling is good. Not responding to flames with more flames is good. No good can come from flame wars…unless you aren’t a part of it an you’re just trololol’ing in the background. Then its really funny. I often go to recruitment when I want a good laugh. Its fun.
But seriously. Want respect? Want help? Don’t journey through the fire and flames. Those are not the kittens you’re looking for.
4~Assume they know better
Whenever you are talking to someone you don’t know well, assume they know more about what you’re talking about than you do. Even if you have a PHD in the subject, they may know something you don’t.
How to gain respect
Now that you know what causes flames and some ways to avoid them, lets learn about how you can actually build respect with the members of the forums!
1~Give honest appreciation
Even if your first reaction is to say THAT’S FLAMING, stop. Look at it again. Relinquish your emotional hold on it. Is the advice relevant and potentially useful? If they’re complaining about a few pixels being out of place, forget it. Me? I’m anal about pixels. Having worked as a graphic designer before, I can see something from 5% and say THAT’S ONE PIXLE OFF, and then zoom in really close and edit it…pixel by pixel.
But if its someone elses stuff, those kind of minor details are worthless.
If it’s something not nearly so anal retentive as a few pixels out of place, then listen to them. You are under no obligation to make the changes they suggest. Just listen. Maybe you’ll find a better way even than that.
2~Be interested in other people
No one will be interested in you or your stuff unless you show interest in them and their stuff. That means the games they make, the advice/criticism they give you, etc. This gives others a sence of importance, and everyone likes that. In turn, they will often do the same for you. There are certain members on here whom I read all of their posts and check their topics when I see them, among them being Klokinator and Pink Soldier. Why? Because I respect them and am interested in what they are doing. How did that start? They showed some interest in me, and so I became interested in them.
When you start arguing/getting defensive, you will get nowhere. Think of it. What is the point of defense? Keeping things out that are viewed as harmful. Think of castles. Building walls. When you argue, you are defending your position. This is the same as defending your castle. While you think you are trying to force someone else to agree with your way of thinking, you are actually just defending your own castle.
If you want someone to see your side of things, don’t argue. Show that you actually are willing to listen to what they say. Ask them questions about it. Be interested. In this way, you are being receptive. You can hear their ideas AND they will be more willing to hear yours.
4~Never say “You’re wrong”
Never, ever, tell someone they are wrong/that they are stupid. They might be wrong, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to hear it. As a teenager I so often heard adults tell me that I was just a kid and was basically stupid. Were they right? Probably. Did that make me listen to them? No.
Nobody wants to hear that they are being idiots/they are wrong. Its irrelevant to them. They’re still going to eat that kitten.
5~Know that you know nothing.
There is great wisdom in not claiming you know something. Once you know how little you really know, accepting the fact that you might be wrong is very easy, and you can openly admit you are wrong. It’s not playing dumb. You really know very little. And sadly, the more you learn, the more you realize how much you don’t know.
This is not to say that you shouldn’t have confidence in yourself. You can say that you don’t know how to do something, or say that you are wrong, but you can keep going on with whatever you’re trying to do. Admitting a lack of knowledge will make your life easier. Trust me.
Intelligence is not what you know, it’s how you act when you don’t know.
So there you have it. What causes a person to be flames, how to avoid it, and how to raise your own level of respect in the community.
This post has been edited by Arbor: Apr 19 2011, 12:13 PM
When I read about the way in which library funds are being cut and cut, I can only think that American society has found one more way to destroy itself.