About internet jerks:
If you mock and belittle someone who has done something wrong you’re not helping them learn from their mistakes, you’re being a jerk.
If you’re knocking someone down to make yourself feel better you are absolutely being a jerk.
If you’re knocking someone down period you’re being a jerk.
Yeah, what he said.
I’ve also seen this as “We need to be nicer to children who do stupid things on the internet” and at the time I thought, WELL ACTUALLY we need to be nicer to everybody who does something stupid on the internet.
Actually Nathan is especially talking about people who, for example, call a book a piece of trash. Not nice, says Nathan. Well, of course that’s true, but I don’t care if one or two reviews of my books are negative. (Well actually, I probably care a little). But you know what I hate? I and some other authors were talking about this at Archon and you know what we REALLY hate?
Somebody who gives our books a one-star review because the publisher says it’s 400 pages long and really it’s only 384 not counting the “extras” at the back. Really? And for this you go to the trouble to write a bad review that gets averaged with real reviews?
Somebody who gives our books a one-star review because they don’t like the cover.
Somebody who gives our books a one-star review because they think the back cover copy was misleading.
I mean, hello? The back cover copy is
a) hard to write
b) often not written by me
c) sometimes written before the book was finished
d) sometimes written before the book was started (seriously)
e) NOT RELATED TO THE QUALITY OF THE BOOK
So I hereby declare that if you write and post a negative review based on anything but the actual quality of the book, you’re being a jerk.
But I mean that in a nice way.