Why does blunt automatically equal rude?

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I wasn't really sure if this belonged in "mature" or "off topic" but since it has the potential to be sensitive I figured it probably belongs here in the "mature" area. I've just been noticing a massive difference between adisc and or forums, social media sites, etc. and I can't wrap my mind around it.
It seems like here members are lots more accepting and chill. Regardless of what people say or how blunt it may be I've yet to see anybody get overly offended or be called rude for it.
Around other places it seems like the exact opposite. I've seen it too many times where somebody might be innocently correcting misinformation, stating facts or making their point and they're just being blunt. Then other members at those places and even moderators get upset or offended and jump on the poster calling the poster rude or acting like the poster is stupid and insist they don't know what they're talking about or accuse the poster of making accusations or putting words in their mouth. I always feel bad seeing this happen because I can clearly see that the poster is just blunt and they I've yet to find any of these posters saying anything that isn't true. These poster don't seem to have done anything wrong but they get treated like they've committed some heinous crime.
I guess my question is why does this happen? And why is adisc different? What causes this forum to be better and could that cause be used to help other sites?
 

Slomo

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I don't know, I still get that a fair amount of that even here, but yeah it is generally much worse elsewhere. I most certainly am straight to the point, and what I say is exactly what I mean. Yet I have been called worse than rude because of it, and have had way too many "read in between the lines" and come up with some way off meaning that I never intended. Though the why of it I have never understood.
 

ORBaby

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Maybe AB's are more mature. Actually I think that because ADISC is a support community that we are more accepting and expect that comments are not being meant as an attack. We do have a kind and loving community here.
 

Kalis

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Usually when I’m being blunt to people, they just call me an a-hole or a b-tch. When this happens, I try and just stop talking to them.
 

dogboy

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I think we tend to handle things better on this site because as a whole, we're more intelligent than the members on other sites. I know that sounds elitist and maybe it is. That said, we sometimes do experience heated tempers because someone has crossed over from blunt into rude. It happens. I've often wondered if someone has written something insensitive, if they aren't drunk or stoned. That happens too, so I tend to give members some slack.

We also have people on this site who are dealing with mental issues, especially depression. Because we are a support group, I try to respond with a measure of kindness, and hope I'm treated the same way. I've had a rough year and now have a therapist. Last week we got into my college past and the possibility of my having Borderline Personality Disorder. I was shaking telling him this. Yeah, he typed it all into his computer.

It isn't a far leap to assume that if someone is living outside society's norm, wearing diapers out of desire, that we might be different in other areas of our life. I welcome our collective differences as I already know we are a unique group and I like who we are.
 

WoodlandWanderer

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Two theories, which are linked.

Firstly, we're a support community. Founded that way, the rules are written that way and it's moderated that way. We're meant to be a more accepting place so people don't get shouted down immediately if they've been misinterpreted. There are several members who credit the support with preventing a suicide attempt or acting as a trigger to go and seek professional help. Anyone who's acting like an a-hole and being overly aggressive usually gets moderated or temp-banned pretty quickly. Often by the time I report a post, one or two other members have already done so.
One of the requisites of having more mature discussions is that you have to accept your views might be challenged and learning how to deal with it. You can't have mature discussions if your response to being challanged is agression. Once you can do that, you can handle others being more blunt with you. Of course we have members who are more sensitive than others which should be respected, as with the general population, but the hyper-agressive reactive sort don't tend to stick around.

My second theory is that we have a large section of members on the autistic spectrum - several of them longstanding members. One of the effects of autism is a tendancy to skip a lot of the social niceties and be quite blunt wherer others may have tried to alter their words to tread more softly. I don't think that's a bad thing, sometimes being blunt is necessary to say what you really mean, I may also be biased. The bad reaction it often gets is because people feel uncomfortable or it hurts their feelings if they feel it was meant as an insult. Once you get used to the style and realise it's a different way of expressing thoughts rather than an intention to offend, there's no real harm done. If anything, it means the discussion gets straight to the point.
 

Lilah

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I also think a reason some come across as blunt is due to the fact this is a chat forum. It's hard to convey emotion through messaging and impossible to use body language to help get a point across. Now there is a difference between being a jerk and being blunt. I like to think those with short, curt answers may just be saying what they'd normally say but without body language and tone it's seen as blunt.
 

Slomo

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I also think a reason some come across as blunt is due to the fact this is a chat forum. It's hard to convey emotion through messaging and impossible to use body language to help get a point across. Now there is a difference between being a jerk and being blunt. I like to think those with short, curt answers may just be saying what they'd normally say but without body language and tone it's seen as blunt.
Exactly, I second this. This is a black and white, text based, forum. There is no body language or tone here (what some call "reading between the lines"). What you see is exactly what you get. And being blunt or brutal is simply being honest and straight to the point. That doesn't make you a jerk, it makes you honest and straight to the point.
 

Azie

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Exactly, I second this. This is a black and white, text based, forum. There is no body language or tone here (what some call "reading between the lines"). What you see is exactly what you get. And being blunt or brutal is simply being honest and straight to the point. That doesn't make you a jerk, it makes you honest and straight to the point.
For most people, there is a tone in how text is perceived, based on the combination of words used. Just because it is text, does not mean that all social cues are actually thrown out the window. Also, being blunt is okay, being stupidly brutal about it, does in fact make them a jerk.

For example, take my last sentence - replace 'them' with 'you', and it becomes obviously clear that the tone of the post is now aiming to be an attack on the person.

Let's do a little exercise and see. The following two blurbs will essentially say the same thing, but can you pick out the difference?

The eyes of the dog look like they are rather large for its body. Perhaps you need to work on drawing your eyes better.

Wow, those eyes are huge, learn anatomy.



On that note, reminds me of a saying I've heard 'Another defnition of being blunt is being dull.'
 
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Azie said:
For most people, there is a tone in how text is perceived, based on the combination of words used. Just because it is text, does not mean that all social cues are actually thrown out the window. Also, being blunt is okay, being stupidly brutal about it, does in fact make them a jerk.

For example, take my last sentence - replace 'them' with 'you', and it becomes obviously clear that the tone of the post is now aiming to be an attack on the person.

Let's do a little exercise and see. The following two blurbs will essentially say the same thing, but can you pick out the difference?

The eyes of the dog look like they are rather large for its body. Perhaps you need to work on drawing your eyes better.

Wow, those eyes are huge, learn anatomy.



On that note, reminds me of a saying I've heard 'Another defnition of being blunt is being dull.'
The difference is that the second one isn't sugar coated. Its not prettied up to sound nice, but its not in the realm of "stupidly brutal" yet either. A "stupidly brutal" way of saying it would be more along the lines of "That dog looks ridiculous with how big you drew its eyes." or "The eyes don't even fit on its face. It looks stupid." or "I'd get a refund on those drawing lessons if I were you." or "Seriously? Have you never seen a dog before?"
Slomo is right, there is no tone in text. People may perceive a tone because of word usage and placement in the sentence and their own biases and present emotional state, but there is not actually any tone there. Different people will perceive the words differently and the only person that will ever know what tone there was meant to be is the person typing, unless they tell somebody what tone the words should have. Assuming they don't though, people or going to assume what ever tone they want whether its the right one or not.
 

Traemo

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It is true that in a text format the vast majority of sub-channel and side-channel communication is lost - but not all of it. Word choice, rhetorical structures, even formatting, are also nonverbal aspects of communication. Another factor that seems to often get little attention in these discussions is a foundational principle of communication: the message I send isn't the exact message you receive. Shortest version: no one has identical filters and biases. The longer version just expands on what, precisely, those filters and biases are and points out that feedback and attention to that feedback are critical to minimizing loss of information during exchanges.

tldr; blunt can be rude, depending on the person; text strips out most of the nonverbal parts of communication
 

Slomo

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The difference is that the second one isn't sugar coated. Its not prettied up to sound nice, but its not in the realm of "stupidly brutal" yet either. A "stupidly brutal" way of saying it would be more along the lines of "That dog looks ridiculous with how big you drew its eyes." or "The eyes don't even fit on its face. It looks stupid." or "I'd get a refund on those drawing lessons if I were you." or "Seriously? Have you never seen a dog before?"
Slomo is right, there is no tone in text. People may perceive a tone because of word usage and placement in the sentence and their own biases and present emotional state, but there is not actually any tone there. Different people will perceive the words differently and the only person that will ever know what tone there was meant to be is the person typing, unless they tell somebody what tone the words should have. Assuming they don't though, people or going to assume what ever tone they want whether its the right one or not.
Thank you. Yeah, that example Azi gave didn't come across for any worse of a "tone" for either of them. Though yes, the second one was more blunt it certainly wasn't an attack.
 

Azie

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Thank you. Yeah, that example Azi gave didn't come across for any worse of a "tone" for either of them. Though yes, the second one was more blunt it certainly wasn't an attack.
I'm going to start off by apologizing for writing this while I'm in ill health today, as their might be more grammatical errors in the post than normal.

Yeah, my second statement was really intended to be subtly less tactful than the previous, but more specifically completely blunt while not quite being inflammatory. Tack on one word, and the tone, such as n00b at the end, and certainly it becomes an attack, and the more inflammatory way of being blunt.

However, what is really perplexing me the most is how people are claiming there is no such thing as tone in written discourse. The Federalist Papers come to mind quickly when I think about this topic, as many of the essays are designed to convey and illicit emotional response based on the political atmosphere of the time. Other than that, look at any good fiction writer, as they know how to charge their words with emotion to set the tone of each scene.
 
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Azie said:
I'm going to start off by apologizing for writing this while I'm in ill health today, as their might be more grammatical errors in the post than normal.

Yeah, my second statement was really intended to be subtly less tactful than the previous, but more specifically completely blunt while not quite being inflammatory. Tack on one word, and the tone, such as n00b at the end, and certainly it becomes an attack, and the more inflammatory way of being blunt.

However, what is really perplexing me the most is how people are claiming there is no such thing as tone in written discourse. The Federalist Papers come to mind quickly when I think about this topic, as many of the essays are designed to convey and illicit emotional response based on the political atmosphere of the time. Other than that, look at any good fiction writer, as they know how to charge their words with emotion to set the tone of each scene.
I'm no stranger to writing fiction or persuasive essays. I write a lot of fiction with people telling me all the time that certain scenes gave them chills or made them cry and I have always been at the top of my class when it comes to writing persuasive essays. Regardless, it still comes down to the individual, not the text. The text has no tone. Any perceived "tone" is placed there by the individual's bias. If a person isn't saddened by death then regardless of how tragic a character's death is written that person won't perceive a sad "tone". If a person is scared of dogs then reading a well written happy reunion between a boy and his dog won't be perceived in a happy "tone". The words don't actually have a tone.
 

AddyShadows

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I'll be blunt, the reason why being blunt most often comes across as being rude is that someone wants to tell you either a fact or opinion that you may not find appealing. This generally leads to the person being told "I'll be blunt" getting upset. Now some people misuse the word Blunt to cover up being insulting, this makes other people who are trying to be sincere look bad, see: "Does this dress make me look bad? Be Honest" "Well. . . I mean. . . It's not- I'll be blunt. . . it makes you look fat." In this instance the person asked you to be honest, and if it made them look fat, thats honest, but you know person 1 is going to get upset at that. Thats a bit of a poor example, but you get the idea.
 

Slomo

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I'm going to start off by apologizing for writing this while I'm in ill health today, as their might be more grammatical errors in the post than normal.

Yeah, my second statement was really intended to be subtly less tactful than the previous, but more specifically completely blunt while not quite being inflammatory. Tack on one word, and the tone, such as n00b at the end, and certainly it becomes an attack, and the more inflammatory way of being blunt.

However, what is really perplexing me the most is how people are claiming there is no such thing as tone in written discourse. The Federalist Papers come to mind quickly when I think about this topic, as many of the essays are designed to convey and illicit emotional response based on the political atmosphere of the time. Other than that, look at any good fiction writer, as they know how to charge their words with emotion to set the tone of each scene.
That's just it though, any good writer is going to describe the tone, feelings, or emotions of a character. It's never inferred or assumed.
 

Mickeymic

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I have a degree in English Linguistics. Linguistics comes from Lingua meaning tongue. Linguistics is the study of how peoples' language, speach and communication. I am not an expert on textology. In fact I do not like it. Ever since the cellular phone came out I was annoyed by it.
Actually, I don't dislike texting. It is what the culture and people have done with it.
Here are examples:
1. On a recent trip to visit to my nieces' one texted me a long caring message followed by {Hug} and :-x. It was the actual emojis. Normally, I would have thought this cute and loving. But she was standing right next to me!
I said nothing and bit lingua mea.

2. Back ground is needed for this. My phone is set to do nothing when I receive a text. No beeps, lights, buzzes, or little pictures, numbers or icons appear when I receive a text.
My girlfriend (I know I don't believe I have one also sometimes LOL) Sent me a series of texts asking me to pick-up stuff and run general errands while I was off and she was working.
I performed all the tasks and continued with my day off.
She came home in a huff and asked me why I didn't do what she asked? I explained I did, and showed her the miscellaneous food and other stuff was taken care of.
Still in a huff she asked why I didn't text her back?
I explained she never asked.
She said she did and I should look at my phone.
I did and the last text said "Why didn't you text me back"
This was sent about ten minutes before she arrived home. She has a twenty minute commute, but that's another rant.

3. LAST ON THIS POST IS THE USE OF WORDS AND PUNCTUATION V.S. ACRONYMS, AND CUTE LITTLE PICTURES (EMOJIS).No I was not yelling my caps lock got stuck :-D:laugh:
If I was yelling I would have put an exclamation point at the end. That's the thing that looks like an upside down lowercase I
I don't know who invented all the symbols used in texting and other communication. (1917) Lord Fisher in a letter to Winston Churchill is credited with being the first to use OMG. When people say OMG ore even Oh my god! around me i feel nauseous.
Punctuation and words when used correctly can display a huge range of emotion. XOXO ILY LOL Mick.
 
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RubberJin

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My second theory is that we have a large section of members on the autistic spectrum - several of them longstanding members. One of the effects of autism is a tendancy to skip a lot of the social niceties and be quite blunt wherer others may have tried to alter their words to tread more softly..
I can relate to that, I've always been a bit toward that end of things and find it hard to NOT be bluntly honest with people about things.

You ask a question, you get an honest answer, why would that be offensive unless someone calls you names? Some forums etc. seem to just work OK like that and others are either a bit sensitive or full of bullshit & "banter".
 

sallyanne

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To be fair, most people's handling of the English language is rather poor at best and modern education has not improved it, rather it has made it worse. It takes a reasonable level of skill to communicate clearly and precisely using the written word. It is why there are still professional writers using their skills and education to pass on a message. That is the first part of the problem, which can be improved by care and time taken when crafting posts and responses. The second problem however, is more problematic - thin-skinned, opinionated and ignorant people.

A new development in the 21st century has been the creation of a new breed of people who are almost permanently offended on pretty much everything. You seem them on forums (fora!) all the time, where they weigh in with angry and often vile responses to the most innocuous of posts. It is virtually impossible to discuss anything with them unless you are 100% in agreement with them - and I do mean 100%, not 95%. That is bad enough, but they also seem to be the kinds of people who lack the ability to fully understand the content and context of posts. So yes, they get offended by anything blunt or not in line with their thinking. I particularly despise those who abuse the writers of books and have as yet, not read a single word of said book. That is not new. Harry Potter originally brought masses of criticism and yes, it was all entirely unfounded by people who literally had not read the books.

Some people simply need to 'grow a set' and stop being violently offended by everything they read that they don't agree with, especially when they know very little about the topic. No offence to the younger people on here, but if you are 20yo, you might want to consider that someone with 40 years of experience in a particular industry or simple life experience, might know something you don't. I wrote a book recently and yes, I have received more than my fair share of criticism for it - naturally by people who hadn't read it. I was abused for the mere use of the words 'growing up as an Adult Baby', because to these ignorant morons, that implied referencing the evil of 'childhood' which no one ever seems able to mention anymore.

Also, irony and satire are difficult to do for any writer, never mind in the limited platform of a forum. If you were to try using satire, you can guarantee you will be misunderstood and abused.

There was a time when reading, writing and understanding same, was valued and taught. There was also a time when people had the ability to disagree without being rude, ignorant and abusive. Sadly it seems, both eras are in danger of slipping away.
 

RubberJin

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My favourite example is Gordon Ramsey - he's blunt AND rude AND can be a total arsehole to those who don't step up - but you better believe he really CARES passionately about saving your restaurant/hotel and wants you to learn and succeed so damn much.
 
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