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Freestuff = Rudeness

Have you ever noticed, the cheaper you sell something for, the ruder the people receiving it are?

I’ve noticed it in business and on the Net. In a variety of “free for the taking” newsgroups (aka binaries), I notice some of the rudest, most innane comments directed towards the posters of stuff like, say ebooks. A guy will take the time to post 500 .lit files for Microsoft’s Reader software, and a bunch of basement dwelling geeks will harp and criticise him for daring to post in the .lit format, even though within that specific group’s charter, it is perfectly acceptable. The poster was called a series of names, and pretty much all the comments were very rude.

It begs to wonder. If Random House puts out a paper back with 7/16ths of an inch margins instead of 1/2 and inch, do they get a ton of rude comments back from the buyers? Other than the occasional crackpots, I seriously doubt it.

I suffer the same thing from time to time with my website. The info is all up there for free – not even ads to support the site. And don’t get me wrong – 95% or more of the mail I get from the site is happy happy joy joy, and a good bulk of it is just simple thank yous. But every once in a while I get critical emails about how I don’t do this, or I should do that, or I should build it for Lynx users or etc etc. Some are downright rude. It really makes you wonder.

So what do you think? Does giving away free things automatically get you the lowest form of humanity, ready to insult your generosity? 



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