In the last week there were two really ugly incidents in the OPML community, and I can see other people threatening to do more. I don’t participate in these destructive situations, it’s very one-sided stuff. I’ve learned, over and over, if you feed the flamers, it just helps them do whatever it is that they’re trying to do.
Now, sometimes they’re competitors who don’t want to compete based on the usual things, product quality, service and price. They want to create emotional issues, and they can do it, if you let them. It can be very successful, there are whole companies made this way. Interestingly the model only works so far, eventually they have to get down to business, and by then they have their own flamers, people who try to, for reasons fo their own, to bring them down.
If people are going flame as a way to compete, I’m going to out them, very plainly in unemotional language. So don’t go there if you don’t want to be embarassed.
Make a better product and the world will be a better place, but try to take a shortcut and it’s going to come back at you. The web gives extrordinary power to flamers, but now we’re going to see if it doesn’t give us the tools to fight back, cleanly and with clarity.
If you’re getting ready to flame and you’re not competing, do us all a favor and do your stuff somewhere else. We’re just working here, trying to create some new software and a new community. If you want something else, then go somewhere else.