TheRtRevKaiser's recent activity

  1. Comment on What's something that you feel is unfairly criticized? in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    It looks like we're probably mostly in agreement. I think the thing that tripped me up was the phrase "Criticism for the sake of criticism". In my mind, your examples just now of pointing out...

    It looks like we're probably mostly in agreement. I think the thing that tripped me up was the phrase "Criticism for the sake of criticism". In my mind, your examples just now of pointing out problematic or abusive behavior, constructive criticism, pointing out systemic racism, etc., are criticism for the sake of someone or something else. Those are all great example of criticism that can add value to the world and can be very valuable if done well. I wouldn't have considered those to be "criticism for the sake of criticism".

    I have encountered many people, and been one myself many times, who were critical merely because it felt good to tear something down or roast someone. That's the thing that I most take issue with: negativity for it's own sake, or for the momentary pleasure of being negative, when it accomplishes nothing and doesn't leave anyone any better off.

    As for your issue with the idea of "If you can't do <thing you're criticizing> yourself, then you have no right to criticize it," I think I mostly agree. I do think that good, useful criticism of a thing requires at least an understanding of it, but understanding something and being able to do it yourself aren't necessarily the same thing. To take your example of Roger Ebert, he may not have been any good at making movies but he was intimately familiar with film and had a wealth of experience and knowledge of it. That makes for good, deep criticism instead of shallow criticism purely for the sake of being critical. I think the same goes for a lot of professional critics. They may not be able to do or make the thing that they criticize, but they do have more than a surface level understanding of what makes it good or bad.

    I'm sorry that we seem to have been talking past each other. I find that to be a common problem online, where you can't get immediate feedback on statements and ideas.

    7 votes
  2. Comment on What's something that you feel is unfairly criticized? in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    Yeah sorry, it's part of some things that have been rolling around in my brain for a while. Thanks for being patient. I certainly think we can agree on that. It's the last part that seems to...

    You wrote a lot.

    Yeah sorry, it's part of some things that have been rolling around in my brain for a while. Thanks for being patient.

    Anyone can like or dislike whatever they want, just don't be an asshole about it.

    I certainly think we can agree on that. It's the last part that seems to escape people.

    3 votes
  3. Comment on What's something that you feel is unfairly criticized? in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    Hey, thanks for replying. First of all, I don't at all mean to imply that someone has to have expertise in something to have an opinion of it, or even to express that opinion. If that's how my...

    Hey, thanks for replying.

    First of all, I don't at all mean to imply that someone has to have expertise in something to have an opinion of it, or even to express that opinion. If that's how my comment read it's probably my fault at not explaining my thoughts clearly. I do think that having expertise or at least broad experience with something makes a person's criticism of it potentially more valuable, though. Someone who has spent a lot of time watching action sci-fi and has spent a lot of time thinking about what makes an action sci-fi movie good will probably have more ability to express a critique of Batman vs Superman than someone who does not and has not.

    Another part of what I am trying to express is that the constant deluge of pointless, low effort negativity online is discouraging not just to creators but to others. Say you happen to like, gasp, Nickeback. Maybe you're not a superfan or anything, but you just kinda enjoy their stuff. You're going to constantly encounter horde of people who probably haven't taken the time to think about why they dislike your favorite band, or whether they actually do, who are just going to constantly shit on the thing you enjoy. Now you might say that you shouldn't have such a thin skin, it shouldn't matter what people say about Nickleback. But why is it the responsibility of a person who likes something to justify it's existence more than it's the responsibility of someone who hates it to justify their dislike?

    Also, I would take issue with your statement that most criticism never reaches the artist, at least for artists who primarily create on digital platforms or who have a significant online presence. I've seen enough interviews and comments from creators who primarily make their content online that they are constantly exposed to negativity, and the weird parasocial relationships that a lot of fandoms create around creators can get really toxic and very discouraging for those creators. To take the OPs example of an off-key singer. If that criticism is posted on twitter or reddit, there's a decent chance that singer is on one of those platforms and a non-zero chance they encounter it. On reddit in particular, if the artist posted the content themselves then they're probably going to see all of the comments. On a platform like Youtube I suspect it's just as bad or worse.

    A couple of examples that I can think of off the top of my head about some of what I'm talking about, particularly with what @FlippantGod expressed as the "scale problem" of criticism online:
    I play D&D on a semi-regular basis. I learned to play on the 1st edition of the game, AD&D, but before very long I took over as DM for my group, and after a while we transitioned to what was at the time the current edition of the game, 4th edition. Now any of you folks that were into Tabletop RPGs at the time probably know how absolutely toxic the hate for 4e D&D was. But my group absolutely loved it. It provided exactly what we wanted for the parts of the game we needed rules for, and got out of the way for the rest. We felt that it was clear, concise, and had enough diverse content that we didn't feel that our roleplay was restricted. But god forbid you ever post on a general forum or subreddit asking a question about 4th edition. You would immediately get inundated with tons of the same tired arguments about how 4th editions wasn't really D&D, how it sucked for a myriad of reasons, how it wasn't really roleplaying at all. It was exhausting and pointless. These people thought they were educating us on how we should be playing a real RPG but we didn't want or need that. We were already well aware of all of the criticisms of the system. But it worked for us, we liked it, and we weren't interested in hearing about how those other folks felt about it.
    Another example is the rampant, seething hatred for The Last Jedi online. I happened to enjoy that movie, I agree with a lot of what @babypuncher said elsewhere in this thread about it. But if anything remotely positive come up about that movie for years after it came out the thread would immediately be dogpiled with people trying to explain to you ALL of their millions of reasons that they thought it sucked.

    7 votes
  4. Comment on What's something that you feel is unfairly criticized? in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    Somewhat ironically, I don't find your initial reply to @Suspended to be very charitable either. It is, I think, pretty clear that they are not trying to make a formal argument in the OP....

    Somewhat ironically, I don't find your initial reply to @Suspended to be very charitable either. It is, I think, pretty clear that they are not trying to make a formal argument in the OP.

    Essentially they state:

    1. It is possible that something exists that we aren't aware of.
    2. The philosophical concept of "physicalism" is often used as a criticism of belief in the non-physical.
    3. They have personally had experiences that they feel can't be explained by any other way they know of.

    Nowhere in the OP does Suspended make any assertion of fact, or any formal logical argument for the existence of anything in particular. There are strong implications that they do have a belief in some sort of non-physical something, but that is really all that can be concluded from their post. So in your response, you accused them of using a logical fallacy in an argument that they had not yet made, and that you just assumed that they would make.

    Also, we're not in a debate here. Nobody is scoring you for pointing out "flaws" in the "reasoning" in other peoples posts. You're not helping anyone by pointing out the flaw in their reasoning, because they haven't expressed their reasoning to you. You just assumed that you understood their reasoning, interpreted in the least charitable way to be illogical, and then corrected the perceived flaw in their imagined argument.

    7 votes
  5. Comment on What's something that you feel is unfairly criticized? in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    I've been wanting to respond to this comment and struggling with how to do so for a while. This comment, in my opinion, is emblematic of some of my biggest gripes with online interactions. Now,...
    • Exemplary

    I've been wanting to respond to this comment and struggling with how to do so for a while. This comment, in my opinion, is emblematic of some of my biggest gripes with online interactions. Now, it's very possible I'm just reading my frustrations with internet culture and the culture of this site into this comment. If that's the case then I apologize.

    I'm also making a lot of assumptions about the circumstances here. I'm assuming that the criticism in question is public, either posted online or directed at the person being criticized in some way. If you're just complaining about your hypothetical off-key singer to your friends later, then I don't really see that as criticism so that's not what I'm talking about. I'm also assuming that this isn't some kind of concert that you paid a lot of money to go to. Once money has exchanged hands that changes the calculus a bit. I think it's fair to say, "Hey, I paid money for this concert and I didn't think it was very good" and let people know it may not be a good value for their money as well, although I do also think that this kind of criticism is often done in a way that treats a performer almost as a product rather than as a human being.

    Criticism for it's own sake isn't constructive, and it doesn't consider the human. Lets say you watch a youtube video of this off key singer and write your criticism in the comments. Or you comment on their Reddit post. Or you blog about their live concert. If you don't have any ability to explain why they performed poorly or how they can improve then what are you accomplishing? The only good that can come of criticism for it's own sake is to satisfy the critic. You've exercised your right to say that you didn't like someone's performance, that it was bad. Congratulations. On the other hand, you've now added to the endless torrent of pointless, non-constructive negativity that this performer doubtlessly has to face if they are putting themselves online, to no good end. If you did have some experience or expertise in singing then maybe you could at least be useful to our hypothetical singer by helping them understand how to improve, but as it is the only good you accomplish with your criticism is to satisfy yourself that you have exercised your right to express your dislike of something.

    I think what I'm trying to say with all of this rambling is that we need to be more thoughtful about what we put out into the world. Is what I want to say going to help someone? Is it going to improve somebody's life? Will it make somebody smile, or chuckle, or just give some good vibes? Or is it just going to add to the constant drumbeat of negativity. The constant argumentative, complaining, pointlessly critical nature of online discourse is, I think, emotionally draining for a lot of people who don't even see the effect it has on them. I just think we need to stop and consider whether we are going to add to that, or push back against it. Maybe you can do some good with your piece of criticism. Maybe you'll help somebody be better than they were before, or prevent somebody for spending money on something that won't be worth it. But probably you're just going to make a lot of people feel a tiny bit more shitty, or one person feel a lot more shitty.

    14 votes
  6. Comment on The Wheel Of Time – Official teaser trailer | Prime Video in ~tv

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    Yeah it's still quite a lot of books to get through, but for the most part they move at a pretty good clip. There is maybe 1 book that is actually a little difficult to get through for me on a...

    Yeah it's still quite a lot of books to get through, but for the most part they move at a pretty good clip. There is maybe 1 book that is actually a little difficult to get through for me on a reread, but knowing that things are going to pick up again makes it easier. But that's for me, I've known of plenty of people with what I consider to be very good taste that bounce off them.

    1 vote
  7. Comment on The Wheel Of Time – Official teaser trailer | Prime Video in ~tv

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    I tend to think "the slog" in the middle books is a bit overstated by fans of the series if you're reading straight through the series and not waiting for new books to come out. There's really...

    I tend to think "the slog" in the middle books is a bit overstated by fans of the series if you're reading straight through the series and not waiting for new books to come out. There's really only one book (I'm looking at you, Winter's Heart) that seriously drags. I do admit that there are probably a few too many plotlines in some of the middle books, but I've never found most of the books that bad on a readthrough, and the highpoints are fantastic. I will say that I'm a very fast reader when it comes to fiction though, so ymmv.

    I am feeling pretty optimistic about the show. They are planning on covering most of the first book in the first season, along with some material from the second and third books. The showrunner has said that he has a roadmap for covering the whole series in 8 seasons, which seems like a pretty brisk pace for covering 14 books, although they'll be able to cut a lot of the descriptions of dresses probably. X'D

    5 votes
  8. Comment on The Wheel Of Time – Official teaser trailer | Prime Video in ~tv

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    I am absolutely hyped for this show, I've been reading the books since I was a kid and I've been following the production of the show since it was announced. I'm really jazzed to see this on the...

    I am absolutely hyped for this show, I've been reading the books since I was a kid and I've been following the production of the show since it was announced. I'm really jazzed to see this on the screen and I hope it does well.

    5 votes
  9. Comment on Weekly coronavirus-related chat, questions, and minor updates - week of August 16 in ~health.coronavirus

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    I don't know where kfwyre is located, but I think they are in the US like me. My state is in the middle of a Delta surge that has new cases per day almost as high as our pre-vaccine peak in...

    I don't know where kfwyre is located, but I think they are in the US like me. My state is in the middle of a Delta surge that has new cases per day almost as high as our pre-vaccine peak in January, and our hospitalization rates are so high that we apparently have a negative number of ICU beds (which means that all designated ICU beds are full and hospitals are having to place ICU patients in ER beds or other parts of the hospital). School just started back here in the last 1-2 weeks, and many schools are not even requiring masks. I'm not incredibly concerned about breakthroughs, but I'm a little worried, and I'm more worried for my unvaccinated kids. It's incredibly frustrating to have done everything we were supposed to do over the last 1.5 years, including pulling the kids out of most of the extracurricular activities they were involved in, and them missing a lot of birthday parties and time with friends, only to have the ignorant morons in this region snatch defeat from the jaws of victory like this.

    10 votes
  10. Comment on Polarization, pedantry, and pugnacious behavior in ~talk

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    I'm in the same boat, and I feel like I've been looking for that kind of online community for years.

    I'm in the same boat, and I feel like I've been looking for that kind of online community for years.

    4 votes
  11. Comment on The 8-Bit Big Band - The Moon Theme from Duck Tales (2020) in ~music

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    Man, I loved this game as a kid, and the music in the moon level always got stuck in my head. My kids were at just the right age to get really into the new Duck Tales cartoon so I grabbed the port...

    Man, I loved this game as a kid, and the music in the moon level always got stuck in my head. My kids were at just the right age to get really into the new Duck Tales cartoon so I grabbed the port of the game and played it with them. I really loved how the show used the moon theme, too.

    Anyway, this is a really great cover, 8-Bit Big Band is almost always fantastic.

    3 votes
  12. Comment on nickelback chadsody (full version) in ~music

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    Disclaimer: I'm not sure I would call this cursed mashup good from an aesthetic point of view, but I adore the commitment and work put into what is really just a troll mashup.

    Disclaimer: I'm not sure I would call this cursed mashup good from an aesthetic point of view, but I adore the commitment and work put into what is really just a troll mashup.

    1 vote
  13. Comment on About one out of three men prefer playing female characters. Rethinking the importance of female protagonists in video games. in ~games

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    This is really interesting. I have a good (male) friend who has a very strong preference for playing female characters in games if he's offered the choice. I myself am about 50/50, but I've...

    This is really interesting. I have a good (male) friend who has a very strong preference for playing female characters in games if he's offered the choice. I myself am about 50/50, but I've noticed that I'm a lot more likely to play a female character in single player games and more likely to play a male character in multiplayer. Not sure if that says something about me. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    7 votes
  14. Comment on SpongeBob players discover filthy game discs make speedrunning tricks easier in ~games

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link
    Link to the SHiFT video about how the technique was discovered here.

    Link to the SHiFT video about how the technique was discovered here.

    2 votes
  15. Comment on Should you be wearing a mask again? Here’s a map of the Covid hot spots subject to the CDC’s new guidance in ~health.coronavirus

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    As someone currently living in Alabama, which has the lowest vaccination rates in the country right now, "but that's their own fault" isn't terribly helpful and is pretty discouraging. My wife and...

    As someone currently living in Alabama, which has the lowest vaccination rates in the country right now, "but that's their own fault" isn't terribly helpful and is pretty discouraging. My wife and I are vaccinated but obviously our kids can't be, and although we've tried to encourage people we know to vaccinate there's only so much we can do to swim against the tide of willful ignorance and misinformation. Is it "our own fault" that people in our communities aren't willing to do what's needed to protect others?

    17 votes
  16. Comment on Weekly coronavirus-related chat, questions, and minor updates - week of July 26 in ~health.coronavirus

    TheRtRevKaiser
    Link Parent
    I'm also not a virologist, but I would add to point 2 that you've got to somehow convince populations to actually use the vaccines that are produced. From my understanding, supply hasn't been an...

    I'm also not a virologist, but I would add to point 2 that you've got to somehow convince populations to actually use the vaccines that are produced. From my understanding, supply hasn't been an issue here in the U.S. for weeks/months, and for the most part lately the issue has just been motivating people to get the damn thing.

    4 votes