Dear People Who Argue with Others on the Internet

Something I see very regularly on the internet is bothering me more and more. Two people get in some kind of argument. One of the parties commits an error of spelling or punctuation. And the other jumps up his ass like a wedgie, as if the whole argument is invalidated by a person not knowing that recommend has a double m.

I’ve done it, you’ve done it, and we’ve all done it. But that doesn’t make it okay.

Bad spelling or grammar doesn’t mean that the argument behind it is bad. Let’s be clear. You shouldn’t pat yourself on the back for being a grammar Nazi. Bad spelling just means the person is too lazy to go through and spell check his writing, and bad grammar or word selection just means that the person isn’t a professional writer. (When professional writers mess up in legitimate publications, that’s serious!)

Similarly, I feel some chagrin when I see what I like to call font-selection douchebaggery. I don’t know if it happens outside of tumblr, but damn is it moronic.

Just signing up for a tumblr account doesn’t mean you’re a designer, and even if you are a designer nobody wants to hear about how awesome you are for selecting Helvetica.

Also, I’d like to express my humble (and possibly wholly misguided) opinion that arguing with people online is a pointless activity. What do you think?

Update, 2023: Man, this is when social media was really new. I had no idea. Shit just done gone and got worse.


How did I end up in Spain? Why am I still here almost 20 years later? Excellent questions. With no good answer... Anyway, at some point I became a blogger, bestselling author and contributor to Lonely Planet. So there's that. Drop me a line, I'm happy to hear from you.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments