There is an etiquette to cracking on fellow A.netters. Here's a good starter guide, not sanctioned by A.net or it's administration and crew:
1. You have to make them a caricature; assign them an overblown trait based on something they once posted that becomes their "crackback persona." For example,
- Jcs17 is fat and eats constantly
- Aa61hvy is a roided-out fratboy who can't hold his liquor
- All women not hospitalized for anorexia are too fat for EmiratesA345
- Airlinelover gets fired all the time
- I'm a Beetle-driving, makeup-wearing lush
etc. The joy of the crackback isn't in the personal attack, but in finding creative new ways to slam folks with their existing persona.
2. People who aren't regular trash-talkers may not enjoy being cracked on. If they repeatedly say stupid things, post tons of attention posts, or spew flamebait, then by all means, blast away. Otherwise, if the victim gives a negative response after a trial blast, you know they're "off limits." Euros often fit into this category, especially the humorless Germans.
3. Posting gay references in blasts on straight people is a gray area. The essence of the "you're gay" joke isn't really to call someone gay. It's to tease an obviously straight dude about his masculinity.
These are generally too obvious and easy to constitute good smack. Most gay members don't care too much about this sort of thing, but some can get pretty riled up. If you're gonna post a "gay" blast, base it on some cheesy innuendo you found within your victims post, don't just make a cheesy gay reference out of the blue. And for god's sake, don't blast any of the gay members for being gay. It's tacky and they've heard it all before without having to get it on A.net as well.
4. Overly political users are really fun to wind up
5. Pics, pics, pics. ebaum's world
has a bunch of forum-ready crackback images, as does eurowhiners, which focuses on more of the classic A.net member-generated images. Lately, I've been getting a kick out of making my own. Remember, every time you post a pic of you or your stuff, you're putting your a$$ out to get kicked
6. If someone wants you to stop, stop. Personal example, a couple of years ago one member posted something that went over as extremely southern racist. I illustrated the point by making a photo collage of a klansman driving the General Lee (from the Dukes of Hazzard), and posting it a few times, saying "you're ride is here." After a bit, I got the feeling that he really hated it, and maybe it was too harsh. That image was retired that second. The smack talking and crackbacks are supposed to be funny and edgy, not overly hurtful.
7. The most important thing. If you swing it, be able to catch it, too. Nothing gets someone piled on more than being able to dish it out, but not take it. KROC gets accused of this a lot, but he'll even KO
himself if the smack is strong enough. Which brings me to...
8. The "awards." KROC brought most of them to the forum (I think MattD brought "The Prize." They just sort of evolved here. A brief rundown:
- The K.O.
An award for a knockout blast against another member. There have been imitations, but there is only one K.O., And only KROC can issue it with authority.
- The Shaft
Issued for self-gloss and Ralph Wiggum-style idiocy. Again the shaft is pretty much the sole province of KROC, its inventor.
- The Piazza
This image of Mike Piazza striking out is issued whenever someone brings weak smack (see Appendix D. Subsection II: TheCoz). Anyone can employ the Piazza with decent effect.
- The Cricket Player
Like the Piazza, but reserved for members from commonwealth countries. Since Indian and Australian members have pretty much no sense of humor, that leaves the Brits. It will apply to Gkirk until I can find an image of someone screwing up a caber toss.
There are plenty of others: The Prize, the Attention Whore, The room (or cargo bay) of People who Care, etc. Go ahead, mix and match!
One of the things that makes the non-av forum is the spirited give-and take between the members. If you've been refraining from joining this fray, but you'd like to, feel free to initiate yourself by hurling your first blast at me. You can rest assured I'll view it with good, sporting humor. But you'd better steel yourself, 'cause I'm gonna crack back.
[Edited 2005-05-17 00:16:23]
[Edited 2005-05-17 00:18:34]
"Sympathy is something that shouldn't be bestowed on the Yankees. Apparently it angers them." - Bob Feller