It's been a while since I stirred up some dirt and kicked a few people in the shins, but I'm having a shitty month, so I felt it was time to put a few people in their place.
This is regarding deviantART contests, and although you might not care about the contests themselves, I think all of us should be concerned with the poor sportsmanship and insulting behavior of our fellow deviants regarding contest winners.
This has been going on for a while, and quite frankly it makes me sick. People are of course entitled to their opinion and free speech, but what gives people the right to knowingly and openly insult the hard work of their fellow artists? What the hell happened to morals, or the Golden Rule of treat others they way you'd like to be treated?
Would you walk up to an artist, stare them in the face and say, "Your work sucks, I hate it, you didn't deserve to win this contest."? Fuck no, you wouldn't. So what makes it okay to do it on the internet? Do people think that just because they don't know a person directly that the person somehow is devoid of feelings?
And to all of you who think it's just 'critiquing', wake up. There's a difference between critiquing, criticism, or simply being a bitter asshole because you or your favorite entry didn't win.
I especially love the comments that say, "no offense, but..." or "I don't mean to be mean, but..." The fact that you continue your thought after writing that is contradictory and betrays your true intent. Of course you aim to insult, you just seem to think preceding your thought with one of those phrases absolves you of responsibility for your words.
Not happy with the results? That's fine, but is it necessary to take time out of your day to do nothing more than insult a few people just because you don't agree with something? Does it make you feel that much better to belittle or insult someone else?
We're all artists here, we're a community of like minded, creative individuals all with similar goals and aspirations. If you can't support your fellow artist or at least respect their hard work and vision, then you belong somewhere else, I'll even show you the door.
Put your energy into becoming a better artist instead of bitching and moaning about other artists. I'm aware that's hypocritical of me to say, but it needs to be said. Putting someone else's work down doesn't suddenly make yours any better, so do something worthwhile instead of being a stain on the community.
In other words, don't be an asshole. The people that write these comments know exactly what they're doing, but play dumb if you call them out. Well, I'm calling them out. Don't be an asshole, because even though you hide behind your computer monitor and keyboard in a virtual community, your actions have real world effects and consequences.
That, and who wants to look like a flaming douchebag to thousands of people.