We all know at least one person who's a jerk. I'm sure most of us don't even have to think hard to come up with a list of people. Some people just seem to enjoy being nasty, rude, negative, and contrary.
The internet is a wonderful thing, but it has its low points, too. It affords people an anonymity that we don't have in 'real life' - you can assume a persona and choose to hide behind it. For some people it's like a power trip - 'ooh, because I'm anonymous, I can act like a jerk and not worry about what people think of me, or how it might affect me.' *insert evil villainous hand-rubbing and cackling here*
I've been lucky not to come across too much of this in the blogging world, but I've heard plenty of stories. One of the most common examples seems to be bloggers who write nasty book reviews, and authors whose replies are equally nasty. I won't go too in-depth on the subject, because I talked about it a couple weeks ago in one of my features called The Daydreamer's Ramblings - Bloggers Who Attack and Authors Who Bite Back. We're all entitled to our own opinion, but I don't think it's necessary to be a jerk in your reviews. It's fine if you didn't like a book, but you can tell us why without sounding like an ass-hat.
In the post above, I mentioned one blogger in particular who appears to hate every single book she reads. How on earth does a person get such high standards that everything sucks?? Could she do better? I seriously doubt it, not with an attitude like that. She claims to love reading, but basically contradicts herself with every single review she writes. I had made up my mind that I would stop reading her reviews, but now I'm too curious to stop. I keep waiting for the day when she declares a book worthy of reading. I've had to stop myself on a number of occasions from asking her why she's such a jerk.
Sometimes I wonder what she's like in real life - is she that negative in her every day life? Does she have any friends or has she alienated them the way she has online? She's one of those people who hides behind her anonymity - she has a made-up name and never talks about her personal life, or posts pictures of herself. For all I know, she's a sweet, mild-mannered person in her every day life, but uses the internet to become a raging jerk because nobody knows who she really is. Makes you wonder, doesn't it?
Do you know any people like that? Have you come across any real jerks online that you'd like to tell off?