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I get that any kind of writing can provoke strong reactions, as some people have strong preferences. And they have a right to those preferences. But I hope we can agree that being vocal about one's preferences is a different kind of activity? Everyday on Hacker News there are dozens of articles that don't interest me, but can you imagine what people would think about me if, in every one of those articles, I posted a note saying that I didn't like the article?

Most of us simply skip over the stuff that doesn't interest us. That is clearly the default behavior. Therefore it is interesting why, on certain articles, people do feel the need to comment on the style.

Personally, I've been lucky, because the most vocal people have been the people who like my writing. But not always. I wrote a book about startups, and some people loved that it had a lot of humor, whereas others really hated it. At least so far, the one's who hate it write to me privately, whereas the ones who love it have written the reviews on Amazon:


I'm lucky, but I'm also curious why this is. As a purely sociological question, why is that sometimes people feel the need to be very vocal with their disapproval, whereas most of the time they keep such disapproval private?

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