Someone who still doesn't understand that you don't get to have things both ways. For example:
- If you use a theory to support argument, and someone goes to the trouble of finding a critique of the theory, you don't get to say, "Nah, I don't want to read it right now. I don't really want to talk about the theory."
- If you want to talk about the biology behind a social phenomenon, you don't get to complain when people talk about all the social layers one has to dig through before one can even begin to think one has hit biology.
- If you want to base your objections to someone's statement on your personal opinion, you don't get to object when your opinions become a topic of conversation.
- If you call women the "weaker sex," you don't get to complain that they're calling you names or that (irony of ironies) they're too mean for you.
Okay, the usual caveat about rules applies. The blogosphere is a freewheeling, anarchic place. Subject to the whims of the blog administrator, you can do any of these things. You do have choices--but they have consequences.
What you can't do if you insist on breaking rules is expect anyone to think you're anything but a dishonest troll. Dishonest because you're not following the rules you tried to set up for the conversation. Troll because you tried to insist the conversation only happen the way you wanted it to.
Now the rest of these rules only apply under the assumption that you don't want to be called a n00b or a troll.
- Don't assume the blog owner is on your side. Comments thanking you for adding to the conversation are not the same thing as an endorsement of your position. Opposition keeps discussion going.
- Don't retreat to your own blog to announce that you've brought your toys home with you. This only emphasizes that you were losing.
- Don't try to carry on the conversation by email, where you think no one else can see how badly you're losing. I am now in possession of a whine that outshines anything you've put into the public eye, and you're trusting my ethics and the blog owner's (which you complain about in the email) to keep it private. Think about this.
- Don't complain that comments you made on a public blog were quoted later on the same blog. Public is public. If you want to clarify, do it in public.
- If you're going to send me an email that says you feel personally violated, don't include a snippet of a private email from the blog owner to you. Private is private.
- If you're going to send it anyway, certainly don't make it a snippet that makes it clear that you've been suggesting he should help you somehow because I'm a meanie. I will call you a wuss. Wuss.
- When I tell you I won't post your email but you should because you may not like how I characterize it, listen. It's not a threat. It's not intimidation. It's just basic internet education.
Kind of like this post.