Screw those Arrogant Linux Using Jerks

I’ve been using Linux now for quite a while. I couldn’t even tell you when I first tried it. I can place a general time around 1997 or 1998. Probably 1997. So, if my math isn’t truly horrible, about 15 years with Linux. During that time, I’ve had many, many computers. I think Linux is amazing and right now, I wouldn’t use anything else, but I can say that it hasn’t always worked perfectly for me. When I’ve had troubles with it, I’ve done what every other person does when they have troubles. First, I Google. Second, I ask friends. Third, I go to the forums. I can’t think of a single negative experience I’ve had in the process.

Over the years, I’ve talked to many different people about Linux. Not all of them are fans. That’s just the way of humans. One thing that I’ve run into with some of the more…. let’s call them “unreasonable” people is the claim that “getting support from the Linux forums is a horrible experience. Linux users are rude, arrogant, condescending, blah blah blah.” Getting support for Linux is a really negative experience for them.

But here’s the trick.

Out of the people that I’ve seen make this claim I know a handful well enough to say, they’re dicks. Absolute assholes. Seeing them claim that the people on the Linux forums are big meanies just makes me wonder. Was the person hanging around the Linux forums just waiting to help out people that need a hand and receives no compensation other than personal satisfaction the rude, arrogant, and condescending one?

If you need to go to the forums and ask a Linux question, that’s fine. Be nice about it. These people aren’t paid to put up with your shit. Try to do a little research before hand and not just wade in expecting them to solve all your problems. If they have questions for you, that’s normal. I can absolutely guarantee you that no matter how much detail you put into your question, you missed something that might be important. If they start out with basic questions, don’t be offended. They deal with a lot of people, and not all of them are computer experts. They don’t know you.

Above all, show some respect. You’re coming to them for help. They don’t need anything from you. If you cop a ‘tude, expect them to ignore your whiny ass. It’s not because they’re rude, or arrogant, or condescending. It’s because you’re being a prick, and if you’re going to be a prick, you can fix your own goddamn problems.



  1. Poopfarm

    I’ve never posted anything on the forums but I have seen developers be total dicks to people asking simple questions or giving feedback, often resulting in stupid and prolonged arguments. 

    Usually this resulted in both parties being dicks, but either way, it began with an innocent remark from the person asking for help.

    • I’d posit that asking questions of a developer directly is a different scenario than asking on a forum. When you ask a developer directly, you’re singling out an individual, and you’re subject to that particular individual’s personality. When you’re asking on forums, you’re getting people that are there wanting to help. A dev that you seek out may not necessarily have any interest in helping. I’d say that those are two very different situations.

    • Mladen Mijatov

      Depends on project and people but I’d say that’s expected. Developers are not kind of people that like being roasted with questions simple search would easily solve. That being said, I don’t approve that kind of behavior and for software I develop, I always try to be polite. If I can’t do it at the moment or I am too frustrated with the question, just leave it be for a day and then answer it. 🙂 

  2. eojhet

    I have been attempting to use Linux for a year now. It has been a fun and at times a gratifying experience when things go well. I must agree, however that a lot of forum users are dicks. This is the case with any forum you go to about any question over any subject you can think of. People love feeling helpful even if they are condescending about it. I guess you gotta take the good with the bad. Dude wants to help you with answers but isn’t happy about how you worded your question because of your frustration. The key is to research your question well before asking it because chances are good that there are already answers out there. In any case, why knowledgeable people would rather badger you than steer you in the right direction is beyond me. I just hope that I can come to some understanding of this operating system before tearing every last hair out of my head. Combined with male pattern baldness, I fear that I will have have little time to comprehend this wonderful operating system.

    • I would agree that the key is to research your question before asking. In the past, when I’ve helped people on forums, it’s extremely frustrating when the answer to the problem is something as inane as the Linux equivalent of rebooting the computer. Too often, people come in pissed off because they can’t get something working. In the process of asking their question, they insult the software that the people they’re asking for help from love, and by extension insult the people they’re wanting help from. In those cases, it’s not condescension or badgering, it’s reciprocation. If you want help, remember that it’s OK to express your frustration but make sure that in the process of doing so you don’t take that frustration out on the people you’re asking.

  3. montaron

    In my personal experience I have never being treated arrogantly when asking for support on forums. Can’t complain there and I think neither would any reasonable user since the support is provided for free and selflessly.

    Now what I have run into was in real life. Recently I was talking about this problem I had on a windows box and woe wish I never did, had to listen to this guy trying to mock me with the “You’re using windows and I laugh at your difficulties, you deserve it also I use linux and I have none of this crap.” drivel. It just felt so strange to be getting that kind of attitude when I’m a linux user myself.

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