Discussion forums hate inaccuracy more than they love inquiry

I'm going to pass along a meme from an acquaintance: Proof By USENET Assertion.
If you ask, "what is X?" you get little or no response, but if you assert "X is Y," you'll end up learning more.
It's a variation on lazyweb, but relies on crankiness rather than mentoring. This cartoon is on point. (No, I'm not complaining about my commenters!)


One of the reasons I think Facebook has become so huge is that it doesn't encourage that kind of crankiness. There is no "dislike" button, and there never will be. Sure, people will sometimes complain about a rotten day, but overall it's positive. By contrast, anyone who has spent time in discussion forums like USENET has probably noticed a tendency towards bitching and fault-finding. Maybe it's an embodiment of the GIFT. On Facebook, your audience is mostly people you've met in person. The next time you see them, you don't want them to remember you as an obnoxious prat.