Where has this obsession with comparison come from ?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions thread
techjedi
techjedi Veteran Member • Posts: 4,088
Re: Its about personal validation in several ways ...

LeicaEye wrote:

techjedi wrote:

softmarmotte wrote:

Few people seem happy with what they have. We see comparisons everywhere

Comparing, sensors, lenses, weight, colours, IQ, sharpness, lastest... seems endemic

What are we hoping to do/achieve by constantly comparing one thing with another ?

and yes, like everyone I fall into the trap (sometimes)

So, calling all psychologists, anthropologists...or maybe we'll just end up comapring psyches

Generally, I think objective discussion and comparison of metrics is a fruitful endeavor as long as a particular interpretation isn't the goal of the discussion/comparison. We are more equipped to understand how our tools can help us and how valuable upgrades will be if we can quantify the differences, especially as they relate to our personal empirical experiences.

Some people look at this as pure interesting science, but I do think some discussion/comparison comes down to personal validation.

First, the healthy types of validation:

1) Validation about "Am I being limited by my gear, or do I need to improve?"

When someone is about to put money down on a product, they want the best they can get within whatever price/feature constraint they are working with. The primary reason is that when a newcomer is reviewing their photographs, they want to feel like they are not being limited by their hardware choice. Knowing you need to improve your skills or technique is a reasonable thing to accept and enjoy a learning journey. However, if you feel your photos are not great because you have been limited by your gear choice is a frustrating idea because there isn't much you can do on your own to improve it other than choosing again.

2) Validation about a past investment. e.g: "Will the platform I chose be able to support future goals that I dont need right now?"

No one likes to hear that their choice is great for X, Y and Z, but not great for A, B, C. So we like to endlessly compare options and capabilities to hopefully validate investments we already made or are about to make. We may never even get to shooting A, B or C, but it is comforting to know we wouldn't need to switch to something else if we ever wanted to buy a new lens and try it, etc. If we find out there are limitations, this might affect our investment roadmap in a positive way.

Types of unhealthy validation:

  • Forum Narcissist: Being perceived as having made the best choice or the technically correct one is more important to some people than the variety of options being discussed. Some will endlessly debate the comparison simply because being recognized as correct validates their hobby more than enjoying their own work.
  • Confirmation Bias: Some people are so fearful they might have made the wrong choice, they will seek comparisons solely to cherry pick the ones that make them feel better about the choice they already made. There is no objective goal other than supporting confirmation bias.

Next time I'm in town I will make an appointment.. Need to unbaffle myself.. L

My rates are very affordable. A stiff drink and good company!

 techjedi's gear list:techjedi's gear list
Sony a7R III Sony FE 70-200 F4 Sony FE 90mm F2.8 macro Sony RX100 Sony RX100 VA +21 more
Post (hide subjects) Posted by
MOD Smaug01
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow