Insults about my work rarely disturb me. If they're not illiterate, I can almost always count on them to misunderstand what I said or show signs of having an agenda that has nothing to do with the quality of what I've written or the issues arising from it.
Most of the time, too, they're anonymous, which always seems less than courageous when you're abusing someone (By contrast, people who have read what I've had to say or who feel moved to explain why they disagree with me usually sign their names). When not anonymous, they tend to have a conspiracy theorist tone that makes them impossible to take seriously.
Still, it wouldn't be fair to list the praise I've received without also mentioning the brickbats. In that spirit, here's a selection of the insults I treasure for their sheer venom:
"You are desperately in need of an intervention, Mr. Byfield. Your
self-hatred and conditioned sense of male-inferiority are obvious." -
Anonymous comment on "Linux Fund and anti-harassment policy."
2. "Bruce is a Micro$oft/Novell shill. Don't listen to him, he spreads nothing but lies." - Commenter on "KOffice's stance against OOXML more practical than pollitical, developer says"
3. "I wonder how much Bruce Byfield was compensated by M****S*** for writing this article?" - ObKenobi on "It's time to get over Microsoft"
article, 'Nine tips for Web 2.0 entrepreneurs,' is absolutely
hilarious. I've been reading web-hype for years by non-technical
people, and this is the best. You consider yourself a "computer
journalist", but are a totally clueless moron . . . . I am a
senior computer science student, and you are so dumb, I will stop
here. “ - Matt Jones on "Nine
tips for Web 2.0 entrepreneurs"
5. “To Bruce Byfield I say; Start writing articles about people that actually matter or stop calling yourself a journalist. This article is the sort of content free crap I would expect from Tina Gasperson. But, you probably think that comparison is a compliment.” - Anonymous comment about "Portrait: Zak Greant - ombudsman, advocate, and strategist"
6. “My university critical writing teacher would have thrown this back in my face with an "F" grade on it. So, I asked myself why this author would make such a mess of the time line. IMO it's emphasisizing the wrong thing and is a weak support to the "trollish" headline. I see this not as "good solid" reporting but as spinning the facts to make the history more favorable to the quotes from the executives.” - Anonymous comment about "Dropping GNU/Linux helps restore Corel profitability"
7. “A balanced article would not conclude with a statement that trivializes the premise of one side of a controversy . . . . Bruce is ill informed, and thus unequipped to inform the rest of us.” -Anonymous comment about "Free Software Foundation and OpenOffice.org team up to escape Java trap"
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