Welcome to the second installment of the Internet forum field guide, a look at the inhabitants of the various woodwind-related message boards, forums, and email lists. (Read the first chapter here.) Today we will examine how the indigenous wildlife deal with conflicts.
One of the most common sources of conflict is the introduction of a dangerous threat into the community. It generally starts with an honest question:
Hey guys, just wondering which alloy gives an instrument a darker sound: 93% silver with 7% copper, or 97% silver with 3% copper? Thanks in advance.
Enter the troublemaker
Suddenly the herd’s status quo is endangered, unthinkably, by one of its own:
Well, actually, it turns out there’s over 100 years of well-documented, peer-reviewed scientific research that says the material makes no significant difference to the sound of a wind instrument. I know this because I went to the library and read actual books and journal articles about it.
The herd stampedes
This kind of affront is clearly unacceptable to the community, and they respond swiftly to correct the errant behavior. The alpha male is often the first to weigh in:
I have been playing for 40 years with some groups whose names you think you vaguely recognize, and I say the material does make a difference, so that should pretty much settle it.
He is followed shortly by a rival who will try to discredit the original poster: