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"I can't be blamed for how you interpret things" - Inane Ramblings — LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Christopher Bradley

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"I can't be blamed for how you interpret things" [Jun. 3rd, 2010|05:13 pm]
Christopher Bradley
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This is a form of argument, almost always seen on the Internet though I have seen it used in real life, too, that really annoys me.

Because, in short, yes you can be blamed for the response of your words. Almost everyone uses words to provoke a particular or range of responses in their audience. If I say, "Fuck you, asshole!" I can't really get upset if they get upset - saying "fuck you, asshole" is obviously a provocation. It's idiotic to say otherwise.

The same is true with almost all other language constructs. We say something with the intention to get a certain kind of response in almost all cases.

Oh, sure, sometimes we say something and get an unexpected response. We might not be understanding the significance of our words or understand the specific context our audience has about our words. It obviously happens. But when this happens, I don't think the appropriate response is to blame the audience for some nihilistic, anti-communication freeform inability to properly interpret a given communication. Better, I think, to reassure the audience that's not what you meant and try the communication, again, with a bit more care as well as respect for the feelings of the other person. (Assuming, of course, you're not trying to piss them off!)

One of the things I hate about talking to people on the Internet, hehe. Stoopit people. ;)