Why Exposing to the Right (ETTR) is BAD!

Started Mar 30, 2013 | Discussions thread
f8BeThereToo
Veteran MemberPosts: 3,297
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You're Preaching To The Choir As Far As I Am Concerned...
In reply to Sovern, Mar 31, 2013

... but you are wasting your time putting forth your heretical viewpoint on the DP Review forum.

I suggest that if you insist on playing Don Quixote tilting at windmills to the myriad theoretical photographers who populate this forum that you spend the extra time required to clean-up your spelling and grammar errors.

You are providing your critics with an easy way to attack your argument. It is much easier to criticize incorrect spelling and parse posts ad nauseum than to spend the time to offer a thoughtful and insightful rebuttal. Even the best-written posts are carefully examined for possible minor inconsistencies because it's the easiest recourse for the intellectually lazy among us.

If you have a problem with spelling and grammar take advantage of the computer tools available to improve your writing and check your spelling. I've been working at improving my writing skills for over 50 years and I still use a dictionary and Internet-based tools to confirm my spelling and grammar every day.

Keep in mind that many of your readers come from one of two camps: there are those who cannot be bothered to focus on any subject for longer than a minute and who respond to posts with attempts at being clever that take maybe 30 seconds to compose. (A subset of this group rely on ad hominem responses.)  Then there are the forum regulars who seemingly have an abundant amount of free time to endlessly argue their points. Their responses are considerably longer and they are experts at the parsing I mentioned earlier. You will never, ever convince them that your viewpoint is a valid one. But you can wind up wasting an incredible amount of precious time attempting to do so...

You can save yourself a lot of time and effort by simply ignoring those respondents who fall into either camp. This forum has a neat tool that makes it one-click easy so you never again have to wade through the dross. Don't fall into the trap of false equivalency; just because someone can type a response doesn't mean that their viewpoint is worthy of consideration. You are not obligated to regard as valid rude, argumentative and poorly thought-out posts. You'll know them when you read them; follow your instincts and don't validate the authors by responding. They are desperate for attention; let someone else do it.

That leaves a tiny fraction of forum participants who will take the time to compose a genuine response to what you have written. They may not agree with you but they will demonstrate that they actually read and thought carefully about what you wrote. They don't rely on the tricks of the Internet forum trade and they may give you something to think about that you hadn't previously considered.

I've been taking pictures professionally for over thirty years, have taken some excellent pro-level courses and I've read a lot books and articles to learn all I can about our craft. And yet there are certain people on this forum that I enjoy reading because there is a good chance that I will learn something new from them. Photography will always be evolving and I am in it for the long haul. (Read about Ansel Adams to learn how a master photographer continued to learn and grow in his craft until he died in his 80s.)

Be sure to take a look at alternative photo forums where the quality of the discourse is more consistent. Forums associated with professional photographer groups are generally a good bet particularly if they do not allow anonymous posts. People tend to put more time into their writing and exhibit better online manners when their name is attached to what they post.

Frankly, I think that your time would be better spent creating images than defending yourself on a photography forum. But if you are compelled to share your insights on an Internet forum I hope that you will think about what I have written. There are ways to make the forum experience more meaningful and pleasant for yourself and your readers. Avail yourself of the readily available tools so you can get the most out of it.

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