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Dismissiveness.
August 16, 2002 6:38 PM   Subscribe

Dismissiveness. [more inside]
posted by mr_crash_davis to Etiquette/Policy at 6:38 PM (38 comments total)

If you don't have anything to add to the discussion, then you should shut up and move on.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:38 PM on August 16, 2002


What about a comment like this?

It's dismissive to me, but then again to others it may be adding to the discussion.

Sorry to pick on you zoopraxiscope
posted by pitchblende at 6:59 PM on August 16, 2002


pitchblende, I think zoopraxiscope makes sense with A), B), and C), but D)'s "non-story" is a throwaway.

What I'm trying to say is take a position with some substance. If you don't care one way or the other, then why are you bothering to comment at all?

And yes, I too have been guilty of the very thing I am calling out here.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:06 PM on August 16, 2002


Maybe the big problem is that the commenter is being lazy: not taking the time to elaborate on why he/she doesn't care about the topic in question. Zoopraxiscope's post seems to me to be valid because he is presenting a point of view, and bothering to explain it.

Don't know/care is just lazy and there's no way the commenter didn't know it anger others. Perhaps, in that baseball thread, the commenter meant that he/she was fed up with all the rigamarole about the strike/non-strike, but from the comment, one cannot truly know.

It's a difficult thing, because for me at least I have the "If you don't care then shut up" reaction. That's probably because I love baseball. If it was a post about the New Kids On The Block, I would agree with the message of the comment. But no, it's still lazy.

I think spouting the lazy "don't care" is a way for a commenter to define him/herself as being anti-baseball.

My head hurts.
posted by Kafkaesque at 7:08 PM on August 16, 2002


There's a would in there somewhere.
posted by Kafkaesque at 7:09 PM on August 16, 2002


By commenting that the subject isn't worth commenting about, you are making a point -- it's just not a particularly helpful one.

Besides, all the cool kids are blasé about everything.
posted by crunchland at 7:21 PM on August 16, 2002


there's never such thing as a non-story, as long as one person cares.

but your first example? yeah. if he doesn't know/doesn't care, then why bother even posting that?

oh well, some of us have to dig ditches for the rest of us.
posted by jcterminal at 7:27 PM on August 16, 2002


I agree with kafkaesque on the don't know/care being more lazy than dismissive. I don't care about the strike and if I did post a comment I would have gone into some detail and explain why I don't care, etc. Instead I didn't post at all -- which most of us who don't care about a topic do.

Your second example from your remains of highjacker post of ehintz's comment was 100% dismissive and we could have done without it. I think your light smack on the butt in the thread might help him see that he wasn't really adding to the discussion.
posted by birdherder at 7:32 PM on August 16, 2002


This is in the same realm as the irritating ~yawn~.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:41 PM on August 16, 2002


...as opposed to the not-so-irritating yawn.
posted by websavvy at 7:55 PM on August 16, 2002


Good catch, websavvy.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:00 PM on August 16, 2002


I put a big yawn in there to communicate my disgust over having to watch big league sports continue their devo. I wish I could be dismissive. Instead, I'm sad and bitter, especially with MLB.

Of course, I'm a lifelong Astros fan, so I'm sure you can do the math.
posted by WolfDaddy at 8:17 PM on August 16, 2002


I'm amazed there is so much activity here on a Friday night. Don't you people have anything better to do?


I know I don't.
posted by insomnyuk at 9:29 PM on August 16, 2002


I was pissed too, crash. It was a really interesting discussion.

(and I'm sorry if I hijacked the thread inadvertently)
posted by amberglow at 9:30 PM on August 16, 2002


I meant it to be helpful, but, with hindsight, it occurs to me that this was kind of shitty and dismissive. Apologies to Herc.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 9:35 PM on August 16, 2002


Here's my nomination for useless & dismissive post of the day.
posted by muckster at 10:01 PM on August 16, 2002


Why exactly? I explained that I didn't like the film, the comment was related to the link (buying the DVD). It was certainly more explanatory than a *yawn*...
posted by owillis at 10:19 PM on August 16, 2002


...as opposed to the not-so-irritating yawn.

And let's just be clear on this: Snopes confirms that story.
posted by moss at 10:38 PM on August 16, 2002


owillis: that thread wasn't exactly amazing, but the point of it was discussing the sales tactic of planning multiple versions of a film. It wasn't a "Wasn't this movie cool?" post, you just took the opportunity to announce you hated it.

Doesn't ruffle my feathers, but certainly dismissive and a bit obnoxious to go into a thread just to announce you think everyone in it has bad taste.
posted by malphigian at 10:50 PM on August 16, 2002


Oliver, your post merely stated your indifference to buying either DVD. Since you didn't care about the different editions of the movie, and had nothing else to contribute about, say, the timing of alternate DVD releases in general, why post at all? Just to put down the movie everybody else who participated in the thread enjoyed? If you wanted to actually discuss the movie, you should have done better than "crappy," which is indeed dismissive and adds nothing.

On preview, what malphigian said. I'm not horribly upset about this either, but since we were discussing dismissive posts, it sprung to mind.
posted by muckster at 11:03 PM on August 16, 2002


Point taken. Next time I'll be sure to enumerate exactly how it sucked. I am kidding. But I understand. Really.
posted by owillis at 12:40 AM on August 17, 2002


...it was merry and pippin was it not. they seemed alittle fruity. Jackson explains that he did not want to do a directors cut, but there you have it. see, a dismissive "this blows" is a contribution because i wanna know why owillis thinks it blows.
posted by clavdivs at 9:01 AM on August 17, 2002


Apathy is an opinion, and a valid stance to take in any topic. In religion you have your zealous believers, your aetheists, and your agnostics. Acknowledging you don't know if there's a god, and question whether the very existence of a god is even valid to your day to day existence, is a very valid and understandable opinion. In politics there are people who actually believe candidate A will get the job done. There's people who believe candidate B is full of malarkey and should be tarred & feathered. Then there's people who'd much rather vote for Mickey Mouse cuz it's all the same to them. All three are valid stances to take regarding politics.

There are people who find baseball an American icon that should be preserved. There are people who believe corporate greed has ruined their appreciation of the game. There are people who'd just rather pretend baseball doesn't exist cuz they think it's silly. All valid positions. If you don't have anything to add to a discussion, you don't add to that discussion.

If you post the word "spatula" or make a reference to waffles, THAT is what you had to add to the discussion. Next to nothing, granted, but still valid. There are some exceptions to this, and those exceptions all eventually get deleted by TPTB anyway, so it's moot.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:26 AM on August 17, 2002


yawn ...
posted by swift at 11:09 AM on August 17, 2002


that thread wasn't exactly amazing

*hangs head in shame, and feels dismissed*

Heh.
posted by WolfDaddy at 6:28 PM on August 17, 2002


Point taken. Next time I'll be sure to enumerate exactly how it sucked.

I had a jolly moment of glee, levity and mirth when I read that.

Thanks, owillis.

*wonders if, by the brevity of the above post I am being dissmissive*
posted by hama7 at 12:48 AM on August 18, 2002


The kind of argument that zoopraxiscope makes irritates me totally. It boils down to 'x is a free citizen and can do whatever x wants, therefore there is nothing to discuss'. Yes, we know. What we're discussing is whether x is right to do such a thing, not whether x has the right.
posted by Summer at 6:24 AM on August 18, 2002


Just to add that posts like this: I love the fact that that we can criticize our government(s), and that we have an internet to do all this. also add nothing to a discussion. Yes, we all exist, we're all on the internet, there is such a site as Metafilter, yaaaaaaay! These posts usually crop up in political threads. "The government's taking away all our rights but at least it's letting us discuss it! Here's a shout out to the goverment. Thanks government!"
posted by Summer at 7:01 AM on August 18, 2002


There are people who find baseball an American icon that should be preserved. There are people who believe corporate greed has ruined their appreciation of the game. There are people who'd just rather pretend baseball doesn't exist cuz they think it's silly. All valid positions. If you don't have anything to add to a discussion, you don't add to that discussion.

But if you had to cut one of those three valid stances out, because it cost money to store, money to download, and time to read, which would you cut out?

I, personally, can't agree that expressing a lack of concern has value in any debate. If the lack of concern stems from knowledge that both sides of the issue don't happen to have, then you should preface your statement of disinterest with that information, ie "You shouldn't loot or plunder, it turns out the meteor is going to miss earth entirely." But merely going *yawn* is only as much as saying, "I'm a jackass who needs attention. Jealous?"
posted by Hildago at 3:21 PM on August 18, 2002


Simply not commenting in a thread is the same as saying "don't know/care", without the bandwidth costs. If no-one cares enough, the thread will die a quick and painless death (as mine invariably do). If people do care about the discussion, which will be evident simply by the fact that there is a discussion in the first place, it is only common courtesy to leave them to their fun and move on.
posted by dg at 3:46 PM on August 18, 2002


What dg said.
Better a "me-too" comment than a "who cares," which is the only point to this comment.
posted by StOne at 9:35 PM on August 18, 2002


For what it's worth, I enjoyed reading, and agreed with, owillis' comment on the FOTR thread. It may not have been necessary, but then, neither was that awful movie.
posted by bingo at 2:50 AM on August 19, 2002


the ring, it's getting heavier.
posted by muckster at 10:37 AM on August 19, 2002


The ring gets heavier?

Oh sure! Ruin the whole trilogy for me, why don't you?!
posted by Shadowkeeper at 11:02 AM on August 19, 2002


Interesting little coincedence... after reading this thread, I went and watched a bit of CNN Talkback Live. The topic was The Lincoln Bedroom. More specifically, they're examing who Dubya has been having over for the night. The first caller dialed in and said "First of all, there's money involved, and second of all, who cares?"

Hearing this guy waste the time of *that many people* on live television by saying "I don't care" made me realize just how unnecessary the same types of comments are here.
posted by dgt at 12:58 PM on August 19, 2002


Just for posterity's sake, here's a lovely example of nothing added to the conversation by five fresh fish.
posted by Catch at 4:04 PM on August 19, 2002


Hearing this guy waste the time of *that many people* on live television by saying "I don't care"

Not a waste of time at all. Now the whole country knows that there's at least one person who doesn't care.
posted by kindall at 5:08 PM on August 19, 2002


And a lovely example of nothing added to the conversation by ToothpickVic. I quote, in full: "How about 'How the fuck would I know?' Only people who masterbate to Tom Clancy novels would answer that kind of question." Not even SPELLED RIGHT, people, for god's sake; we've gone from adding nothing to subtracting something.

Not to shift the entire direction of this thread but I'm more and more all the time for the idea of requiring that people show an email address if they want to play in the sandbox with the rest of us. This is not the first time since new users signups were reinstated that I've wanted to send an email saying "hi, welcome, just wanted to say that I think x isn't really the best way to approach y..." but couldn't.
posted by Sapphireblue at 8:32 AM on August 20, 2002


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