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taking critique, talking shit

misterR avatar
08/15/2018

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THE SORT OF THING YOU REALLY DON'T WANT YOUR BOSS PEEKING OVER YOUR SHOULDER AND SEEING.

i've spent a whole lot of my life eyes-glued to a computer screen, and one thing it's done is turn me into a shittalker.

i guess that's what happens somewhere like the internet where everyone and their pet dog is talking crap, bitching about everything that flashes up on the screen or plays out the speakers. not to mention all the trolling, pisstaking and shit. it rubs off on ya. it's like a cook-off, everyone's bringing the heat.

here's what that means: you're gonna get shit. yeah, you. whoever the fuck you are that's reading this. you've probably gotten shit already. probably enough shit that you've figured out how to deal with it when some monkey impressionist motherfucker starts flinging his fresh 3-second-old chocolate cake collection your way. maybe you've got a go-to or something, some rule of thumb about it.

some people just can't be assed with shittalkers, they'll keep the big red ignore button an arm's reach away and a airtight fucking angry fucking fist leaning over the fucking thing like a pissed off security guy over the 87th motherfucker starting commotion that night. you know? some people don't want to fucking hear it. hell, sometimes it's flat-out just "don't feed the trolls", but then that comes with sorting out who is taking the piss and who's not.

maybe you go out of your way to dob on the guy, report them to the mods or whoever's in charge, try to get rid of them. i think that's a lame way to go about it. poor sucker says something rude and you try to get their ass blasted off the face of the earth. for the terrible crime of poking fun at you they can't even hang out on the same website as you, the way you see it. jesus fucking christ. but whatever. it works.

i've seen some fuckers get devastatingly shittalked then try to pick the guy's brain. sort of figure out where they're coming from. comes in a couple forms too, ranging from genuine to fucking annoying as shit. maybe you're legitimately hearing out this flamethrowing son of a gun, trying to make peace with them.

more often it comes in the cunt form where some cyber-psych dropout piece of shit tries to really get to the heart of the conflict. and what that means is act like they've got you all figured out and say dumb shit like "all this rage is coming from some deep rooted sense of inadequacy, i can tell from the subtle typing mannerisms and having read quite a few psychology papers in my time". just annoying, sneering bullshit.

not every asshole on earth giving you shit through the big tube system has the same daddy issues, mummy issues, small dick embarrassment syndrome or whatever dumb crap it is you think's in all their heads. fucking professor x over here, get the fuck out with that shit.

my point is, everyone's different. everyone sorts out their own system for dealing with heat over the ethernet cables. maybe it's blocking, maybe it's snitching, maybe it's just scrolling past it, maybe it's trying to reason, maybe it's explaining yourself or trying to turn it into a debate. hell, speaking of: if you ever get insulted online, try bitching about "ad hominem" like you're in debate club. guaranteed to never work in your life.

a real simple method a lot of people like though, and this is the one i stick with cause it makes the most sense to me, is fair's fucking fair.

like i said, i'm a giant fucking shittalker. i love it. i bathe in it. if someone wants to trash talk me, and they're all full of shit, you bet your second fucking asscheek i'm talking shit right back. that's how i try to deal with crap, i cake the fucking walls with shit of my own. you bring a lighter i'll bring a flamethrower, bitch. might be a busted one but fuck it i'll give it a shot. anything's better than taking it up the ass like your narooto body pillow last lonely night.

i've seen more arguments and slapfights on this flatscreen of mine (and all the other screens i've had) than i could count on both hands if i was that red guy off ben 10 with a billion arms and it's taught me one thing: half the people online who start shit run the fuck away or bitch about it and make excuses why you can't say to them what they're saying to you the second the target bounces back.

and those people are FUCKING COWARD PIECES OF SHIT.

i'm not talking about trolls here, of course they want that reaction but fuck'em. let them have it, won't kill me if i make a guy happy by calling him a cunt. you've just got to understand that a lot of shittalk comes from a sincere place, but not always sincere enough that they won't puss out of it first chance instead of taking what they dish out.

so i like to test for that a bit, mostly cause i'm curious. someone calls me a dumb cunt or a faggot or something, i'm not taking that shit, i'll call them a cunt right back. see if they throw in some sad one-liner then block me or if they legit keep it going. if it keeps up a while after that, i don't mind. i try to keep it fun and think of funnier shit to type on the fly or catch them out while they're trying to catch you out, it's not a bad way to piss away time. and like i said, fair's fair. if you're insulting someone out of nowhere and giving them shit then you're asking for the same back.

i think a lot of people work like this, especially once they've been online long enough. if you don't believe me i reckom there's enough thread-derailing arguments and madhouse all-over-the-fucking-place bitching wars on all sorts of forums to back me up here a little. no one likes getting insulted, and not a lot of people want to let you off insulting them without getting in a few heated words of their own. say all the don't feed the trolls you want, what else is a guy gonna do with all these crumbs flying around already? for a lot of you out there, and for me like i said, it's if you can dish it out you can take it. i think there's a fair amount of places where it's agreed that's fair play.

but there's somewhere it starts to get complicated, i've started thinking.


remember back before twitter started, before facebook took off and when that image host for drawings deviantart was the big deal? i wanna talk about that site a bit. i'm going off what i barely remember about the place and about youtube and a bunch of other spots, but i think this is all mostly true when it comes to the trends i'm talking about and what order they came in.

you'd get these big-shots who land a few tens of thousands of watchers or something and all of a sudden they're the sickest shit around. you could be the most measured, polite motherfucker out there. you could be the most considerate sensitive voice in the comments and they'd still flip the fuck out if you even hinted at them their scribbles of dark and epic yugioh fan characters with 10 fucking layers of lens flare weren't shat from god's ass itself or some lofty fucking shit.

this weird attitude was all over the place, people so full of themselves that they took anyone daring to think they could look THEM in the eye and give THEM advice like a kick to the nuts. this is mostly kids to be fair, but full-on adults would get all stubborn like this, block comments and bitch into the night about people pointing out anatomy mistakes and shit like that. make all sorts of excuses why none of that shit's worth listening to. and i bet you've heard some of these:

  • "it's my STYLE!"
  • "i bet YOOOOOU couldn't do better!"
  • "i'm not taking this shit from some NO-NAME! bet you're just JEALOUS OF MY FAME!! AND SKILLZ!!!1 AREN'T YA?!"

if there's problems with the drawing, there's problems with the drawing right? what does it matter who points it out?

here's an example of what i'm on about.

click the image for a full-size version (image from encyclopedia dramatica)

i'm all for take what you give but that turned into outright talking shit vs a pretty measured comment.

that one was a few years ago but the whole attitude's stretched back for a long time before this artist. it got to the point where it pissed a lot of people off. people who thought it was a pain in the neck to go out of their way to look at someone's novice work of art, see what's good with it see what's bad with it, give a bit of feedback and find some furiously tapped-out ten-layers-of-concrete-levels-of-defensive remark in their inbox a day later. they started making themselves heard with all sorts of posts talking about how important it is to take criticism, how some people just don't respond to it right and it bites them in the ass later.

a giant internet-history/pisstaking wiki you've probably heard of called encyclopedia dramatica was claws-in mocking this shit as well, and they were saying pretty much the same thing (but a bit more hard-edge of course): these losers can't take criticism.

soon enough this was one of the big unspoken rules on deviantart: if you're an artist, and if you're a bitch about taking criticism, you're not going to improve, you don't have the attitude for it, you're taking a nosedive nose-first right into failuretown. miserable place, there. this is the internet too, people didn't all just go to the same site like they do now, so this bit of cyberphilosophy spread to forums, blogs and video sites like youtube. then it got to where it is now, the unspoken rule of deviantart turned into the unspoken rule of the internet: learn to take criticism.

i know none of this is groundbreaking shit, but listen i'm going somewhere with this.


so you'd think with the internet, where you can go straight to the source instead of going off shit you hear second-hand about anything, you could spread a message loud and clear, and keep it consistent. but nah, shit turns into chinese whispers in a snap especially when there's not an easy source to pin down.

that's sort of what happened with this attitude of "learn to take criticism". you've got people who saw this shit first hand or even came up with it themselves and watched it spread out of dA into the web, and they're hardline "constructive criticism should be listened to" and that's it. but once the idea's out there, it starts to go through this shit where people misunderstand it and end up with their own versions of it. and i bet you got people who went and had their own hot takes about the thing.

i think this happened especially with youtube (where it's mostly kids) once they caught wind, but somewhere down the line it turned into this dumbed-down piece of shit fucking unreleased beta version of the idea where if you're drawing, or you're animating or you're writing or making videos, you're not meant to listen to criticism, hear it out and take it in, weigh the good ideas against the bad ideas, watch for shit you never spotted about your work and use the reaction you get to improve. fuck you, not good enough. instead you've got to take it to the extreme.

when you're criticised and told what's broken, why it's broken and how to fix it, it's a goddamn order. you've got to follow that shit to the letter. oh what, this comment's horseshit? every correction it gave was flat out wrong and the advice was so useless it'll make your crap worse if you follow it? HAHAA BITCH tough shit BITCH learn to take my MASTERFUL CRITIQUES and do what you're told BITCH. just obey all of that shit. one kid saying your sound's too loud, another kid saying it's too quiet? make them both happy. DO IT BITCH.

by the way this is split off from the other type i mentioned, who keep it to "at least listen". they're still kicking. what's happening is it's the same sounding sentence (learn to take criticism/can't take criticism or whatever the fuck) but different people thinking it means different shit, or something like that. it gets real confusing like. it's that chinese whispers shit.

one of the ways i've seen it split off is out of taking criticism or critique to mean different shit. some people take it as shorthand for constructive criticism. some people take it as comments where it's giving pros or cons for a painting or a video or whatever, even if there's an edge to it. but one way i've seen a lot of people take it is criticism is anything you say that's critical, maybe about the work or maybe about whoever's making the work, even when it reaches flat-out shittalking. remember up a bit when i wrote how i noticed the fair's fair shit could turn into a mess? this is fucking how.


here's the way i see it: a lot of people on the internet and that, they don't want to hear smartass motherfuckers talk shit about them then watch them run along their merry way, yeah? not without getting some jabs of their own in. i'm like that, so i know the feeling.

and there's an understanding where unless you're some punk piece of shit motherfucking bitch fucker pussy bitch, you don't shovel shit over the wall and not expect your lawn to turn into a fucking sewer. you dish it out, you take it. easy right? it's like times tables or anything.

but if i'm onto some shit here, then maybe it's not that easy. i reckon for some of that take the criticism crowd, dish it out and take it only works for people like you and me. once you get an audience and you're known for something it turns into a problem. what i'm thinking is there's some hypocrite bullshit at play.

there's no way the idea of "talk shit get hit" and the idea of "always take criticism" have never both tucked into the same head. they're both nice, catchy sounding bumper sticker lines and they don't even contradict each other on their own. hell, depending what you take them both to mean they might not even give you ideas that don't fit together. but it all hangs on that criticism bit i think.

if you're talking about taking criticism and you're meaning you've got to play nice with people who call you shit at what you do and start-to-finish, top-to-bottom a failure, let's say, then what the fuck are you doing saying don't dish out shittalk if you can't take it? because that example i gave sounds a lot like shittalk to me. and like i said there's kids out there who that's how they look at the criticism thing, it's anything goes and you've got to just take it and say nothing or you're one of those big-shot pricks who just can't take criticism at all I GUESS.

meanwhile there's the punk critic who dished it out and never had to take it.

maybe it's different if you've got a fanbase, and you don't want to piss them off ideally, y'know... for pr and that. i think that's a load of shit. confronting some cunt trying to shovel over that wall at you and block off anything that's thrown back, is more worth it than protecting your dumbfuck internet reputation, way i see it. even just as a principle thing.

it's crap that some youtuber or anyone making cash money off the net gets stuck with that fear of losing a living keeping them silent in the face of blatant shittalking wrapped in a half-assed bow made outta cheap walmart string, cause youtube joe or derek on deviantart will come off like some sort of hotshot fucking diva for showing a goddamn fucking spine. for sticking to shit they could've been taught from the start of their time on the web. even the motherfuckers doing this shit for a hobby have to deal with bitchboy shittalkers who can't take the same heat they're firing out their ass so they've gotta make it seem like their target's the one who can't take the "advice" just for poking back.

for fucks sake, sick of this sneaky special-treatment bullshit where nobodies get "shittalking" and nobodies followed by nobodies get "criticism" even when it's the same shit (which i get it's not always). if you're going to accept the whole dish it out and take it thing, fucking commit to it cunt.

the R squad!