The Internet is made up of intelligent, thoughtful, and articulate individuals eager to engage one another in the marketplace of ideas. Oops, I left out the words "About 5% of" at the beginning of that sentence. My apologies.

At any rate, there are many, many people online who like to comment on things. A few are lucid, most are harmless, but some are… Well, let's just say "not very nice". Among the latter group, I've noticed a few distinctive types.

The Know-it-None

Do you ever find yourself fighting an irresistible urge to publicly piss comment on something you don't understand? If so, you may be a "know-it-none". I find that a key to this personality type lies the following formula:

y = 1/x

(where x = amount of knowledge you possess and y = amount of knowledge you think you possess.)

The Curmudgeon

There are two things in this world that the Curmudgeon knows for a fact:

  1. Things were better in the old days
  2. He's done everything there is to do already, ok young'un?

Somewhat surprisingly, having a touch of gray around the temples isn't a pre-requisite for being in this group. On the contrary, there are apparently quite a few 20 somethings who have "seen it all".

The Statistician

This person likes hard proof. For everything. Have an opinion you'd like to express? Shove it unless you have exhaustive research on the topic. Want to share a feeling? Screw you, unless you show me data.

Final Thought

This might sound crazy, but not all internet discussions are doomed to devolve into a verbal vomitorium. You just have to get past the obnoxious noise to get to the good bits. At least that's my opinion. Or, as the Statistician would say:

Where's your research for this post? You don't have any? Then shut up.

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